Coworking vs WFH: Why a hot desk is better for freelancers
One of the biggest perks freelancers enjoy is having the autonomy to choose where they can work. Amid the many options, working from home tend to be a popular choice for obvious reasons – it’s more accessible, comfortable and less costly.
Yet, this comes with some snags. Having a poor study set up or unstable internet connectivity, for instance, can make it difficult for some to work. Then there are distractions that hinder productivity (cue the TV, a cosy bed, your crying toddler or the adorable kitten snuggling between your legs each time you’re on a call). These point to a larger phenomenon – the blurring lines between work and home life. Since work and home are intertwined, especially when you perform work and household duties at the same time, it leads to – what we know today – the ‘WFH burnout’. While burnout can occur in a regular office environment too, the exhaustion caused by working from home is a combined consequence of attending to never-ending household needs and putting in longer work hours than you should because it is just so easy to lose track of time at home. There’s also the feeling of isolation being on your own, underpinned by the lack of camaraderie you would otherwise enjoy seated next to colleagues.
If you’re having gripes with your work from home arrangement, similar to those we’ve noted above, it’s probably time for a change. We reckon a coworking space will help. How so?
- You can draw a line between home and office
Since the blurred lines between work and home form the crux of many problems associated with such an environment, the first step you should take is to shift your workspace away. A library or café may be the next best option, but these come with a caveat – taking a wrong seat or not finding one at all.
Renting a hot desk at a coworking space solves the problem. The environment, which is essentially a co-sharing office space, guarantees a desk for you to work at. This helps you establish the boundaries of work. You have the space to solely focus on your tasks with a peace of mind, and then return home to pay full attention to your household needs.
- You will work alongside a community of like-minded individuals
Working in a co-sharing office space makes you part of a community of like-minded individuals who could be freelancers like yourself, owners and employees of new startups or independent entrepreneurs. You get the opportunity to mingle with them and share experiences, eventually making new relationships with people even as you work independently. This saves you from the isolation and loneliness felt while working on your own. When you get stuck or need some inspiration, strike a conversation with someone at a nearby hotdesk. Who knows, that might just land you your next big gig.
- You can secure yourself more prospects
There’s no better way for a freelancer to acquire leads than to make connections. A coworking space creates an environment for conversations and knowledge-sharing, geared towards creating opportunities for growth. While you can connect with people over video, calls or chats from home, mingling with groups of individuals, in the common areas or at community events you gain access to with a hot desk plan, lets you widen your network faster.
- You can establish your freelance career professionally
Maintaining a professional outlook is also essential for freelancers. When you book a hot desk at JustCo for instance, you get a business address to direct all work-related mails to, such as cheques or project documents. You may also print this address on your business card or add to your email signature so your prospects and clients know where they can speak with you in person – whether in our meeting rooms or cafés in the vicinity. Since most of our coworking spaces are located within or near the central business district, you also enjoy the benefits of working in the city and easily making your way to client meetings without travelling too far.
- Coworking still provides you with the flexibility to choose your workspace
While working from home may appeal to some, especially those who are caregivers, a coworking plan will still prove beneficial. You can choose to come down once a month or just a few days in a week, that too at any time you want – all these while having full access to amenities and other hot desking benefits.
Working from home is not entirely bad – often, it can be a necessity. What can help improve the situation is having an alternative workspace and a community to tap on so you don’t miss out on what you need to take your freelance career to greater heights.