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You didn’t like working in an office, so you started your own business and got a few clients. Now, however, you have a lot of business, and you’re finding yourself distracted by your roommates, your pet, your TV, and you’re thinking that a coworking space might be the answer. It might, but there are five issues that can cause your coworking experience to turn out badly.
1. Wrong Place
Not all coworking spaces are equal, and many workplace issues will still arise at many of them. If you expect all spaces to have the amenities and atmosphere you’re looking for, that’s simply not correct. You need to make sure that the vibe and the type of coworkers you will encounter in your new space are compatible with your coworking vision.
Also, if you have a need to meet clients in person, your location must provide private conference rooms. If you make many private phone calls, your coworking space will need to be able to offer you a place to do that. In short, make sure that your prospective location meshes with your work style.
2. Wrong People
If you’re not an inherently social being, a coworking situation may not be for you. Many startuppy types like the “it’s us against them” camaraderie of a startup environment. If you’re beyond that and just want to get your work done, maybe you need to consider a private office instead.
3. Smelly Food
Vet any coworking space opportunities when stuff is happening there. If you go at 6 a.m. and at 10 p.m., you may encounter a totally different feel. We suggest that you visit at 11:00 a.m. and stay through lunch. If the entire area is affected by Thursday’s tuna melt being nuked in the kitchen, you may want to find a different space. Likewise, once you move in, don’t be the person that offends everyone else with your keto diet lunch choices.
4. Stick to a Schedule
Flex time is great if you don’t abuse it. If your goal is eight productive hours per day, it doesn’t matter if you get there at 9 a.m. or 10 a.m. Just stay there for eight hours and do your work. If you try to put in 16 hours on Monday so that you can be off on Tuesday, that could work also—if you have the ability to be as productive during a long day as you would be throughout a short day. If you just show up when you feel like it, your coworking experience may not be any better than your working at home time was.
5. Don’t Sell
If you look at every coworker as a potential sale, people will stop talking to you in a hurry, so look for your prospects elsewhere. Sure, coworking spaces are great for networking, but don’t overdo it. While many people like socializing at a coworking space, remember that people are there to work; they need to discipline themselves in order to get stuff done. Just like you.
Sam Radbil is the lead writer for ABODO Apartments, an online real estate and apartments marketplace with available apartments from college towns like Athens, Georgia to major cities like Los Angeles, California. Their research and writing has been featured nationally in Curbed, Forbes, Realtor.com, HousingWire and more.
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