Should Startups Opt for Co-working Spaces? Pros and Cons

Along with the rise in gig economy, the idea of sharing offices with strangers is no longer a remote concept. Owing to expensive prices and limited real estate to rent as office, it becomes easier to find co-working spaces in many urban areas. While co-working space is widely-known as the place where independent employees get together and work, this unconventional workplace has been gaining popularity among startups too.

Leaving behind traditional and secluded office space, entrepreneurs are considering co-working space as an option to start and grow their unicorn companies. Not only contractors, remote workers, or freelancers, more and more startup founders are opting for co-working spaces.

There are several reasons why leaders are keen on moving their headquarters to more open and shared office. Besides financial reasons such as saving budget on real estate and operational costs, the opportunity to build wider networks has also become powerful reason why startup founders are choosing co-working spaces.

However, while sharing office with foreigners or even other startups might sound like an exciting idea to socialise with other players in the industry, it does come with a few drawbacks as well. It is duly noted that working in a shared office environment might not be suitable for some people. That being said, before deciding to bring your office there, it is imperative for you to weigh both pros and cons of coworking spaces:

PROS

Save up on your budget

Compared to renting a full-time office space and arranging everything from scratch can be expensive and tedious, using co-working spaces has proved to be more affordable and comfortable for small businesses.

Not to mention, you do not have to go through complicated and costly office setups such as phone lines, internet, or electricity. All you have to do is come to the workspace and pay for the membership to avail of all the facilities to include free Wi-Fi and unlimited tea/coffee.

Opportunity to network

Networking is the key to business success, and you can do better with coworking spaces. Since your team gets to meet people from various resources and industries, there are good chances that you can collaborate with them. By connecting with all kinds of people, you can always dig out potential business partnership or even engage your first client.

Boost creativity

Co-working spaces are great places where you can find collaborative environment. When you see other people doing their best to achieve their goals, unconsciously this will motivate you to work hard and be productive as well.

As you will be able to interact with people from other backgrounds, you can share and gain insights from them as well. This, in turn, will boost your creativity and ignite your spirit to create something new.

CONS

Bigger distraction

There are two possibilities that you can gain from people you meet at the coworking workspace: either they inspire you, or distract you instead. While collaborative environment in itself is a great benefit, you might get carried away with trivial conversations and end up wasting your precious time away for nothing.

To keep you productive without losing the fun element, it is crucial for you to restrain from such distraction and focus on your project.

Lack of privacy

Working in a co-working set up means you will not be the only one in the room. Such conditions might give your team lack of privacy. Dealing with this situation can be difficult, especially when you need to make confidential calls or simply concentrate on particular things. Therefore, if you can only work in a quiet atmosphere, co-working spaces might not be your ideal office.

Difficulty to build startup culture

Culture is something that will define your startup. The problem lies in the fact that when you work at shared workspace, it will be difficult to distinguish one culture from another. There are good chances that your work ethics might clash with another, and such situation might lead to further conflict between neighbours.