How many freelancers do you think are actively engaged in their work today? Try and find an answer to this question, as I was not able to find a concrete figure. But what I found was that every third worker in 20% of the global organizations is doing some kind of freelancing now and then. Some are designing logos, others are writing articles and some are developing iOS applications for their clients. What drives them towards this line of work despite the fact that they have regular jobs? Money, freedom or the self-attested work schedule. Probably all of them, that is why the most successful freelancers like Ilise Benun and Preston Lee have left their jobs to be a part of the gig economy.
Set aside the regular employees what about those who are regular freelancers, who have played such a big role in the ‘gig’ economy. Majority of these freelancers are millennials who are driven by the craving to earn money as per their convenience and do not bode well with the regular 9-5 job tradition. A study estimated that until the year 2020, almost 40% of the American workforce will be contractor based and will not choose to go to any office.
We often say with time the society and its systems have to change else they will be stamped as anachronistic. One such change in the work culture is coworking, and it has taken the freelancing world by a storm. The reason for such a bold statement is that coworking has proven to be a big improvement to the work culture of the millennials. They prefer to work independently just because they are not chained to their desk and can enjoy every moment of their life. According to me, this freedom to work as per their own schedule is the biggest motivator and which makes them responsible, interactive, engaging and apt to work for themselves.
Now why and how coworking has managed to upend the freelancing model and encouraged the “giggers” to abdicate their couch is another story, which we are going to cover next. So let’s get started and know how coworking has become the biggest success factor for freelancers:
Just 2 minutes of Facebook
This sentence is the epitome of procrastination, whenever you say that I will spend the next two minutes on Facebook it means that you are losing focus on your work. A coworking space acts as a deterrent and a motivator both, you will notice that everybody on your desk is busy making money and you are wasting your time looking at something which has nothing to do with your work. I think coworking spaces inculcate a sense of discipline in freelancers and makes them realize that they are not alone in this field.
The circadian rhythm of work
No matter how hard you try to keep a routine of your work at home, there must have been instances when you would have forgotten about that discipline. Similar to our body, our life should also have a circadian rhythm, which segregates work from home. This does not mean that we are going back to the traditional 9-5 office routine, but the point is to realize the importance of a distinction between work and home. When you are working in a coworking space all day or night you will notice a certain degree of improvement with regards to your focus, concentration, thinking ability, and work speed.
Freelancing is not a superhero job
Who said that you have to work alone as a freelancer? Isolation is not the key to success at least not in the 21st Century. When working from your home you are missing out on building a great network of social interactions and community build ups. Coworking spaces are perfect for freelancers because they are similar to an office but are not an office, rather it can be called as a social office. You can build connections with like-minded people, gather some insights from people about varied topics, have a small talk with your neighbour. All in all a coworking space resembles a social encyclopedia in which you can leverage out information on demand, and build a bond with the whole community. Being a part of something is much better than being alone and that is why Watchmen is more successful than Green Lantern.
Coworking Spaces are Blinkers
You must have seen in a horse race that the horses’ eyes are covered with some leather flaps, they are called blinkers. They help the horse to maintain focus ahead and avoid any distractions from the bypassing horses. Consider your work as a race, you are the horse, and the coworking space a blinker. The point is that it allows to focus and avoid all the distraction at home. Imagine you are sitting at your home and an uninvited guest pops in, what can you do other than being hospitable. Working from a coworking space will help you divert all these petty distractions and help you to be attentive towards your work.
Statista has concluded that on an average almost 129 members work regularly in all the coworking spaces. Now imagine your client wants you to design his website along with developing his application, now you may not be an expert website designer and none is available at your home or in your neighbourhood. But if you check with your coworking neighbours you will surely find a plethora of website designers. Hence you have a pool of people ready to work sitting by your side every day in every coworking space.
The majority of people think that the freelancing economy does not contribute to the GDP and hence they do not feel like dressing up for a meeting or taking part in regular events. But do you know the worth of your gig economy? According to Field Nations, it will reach a whopping $2.7 trillion until the year 2025. That calls for some plaudits for you as you are a part of this economy and secondly it also forces you to think that how I meet my clients reflects my approach towards my work. Meeting a client at home wearing pajamas seems a bit unprofessional and tardy. The coworking spaces have exclusive meeting rooms and conference halls or even skype pods that help you build a long-lasting impression and also imprints a professional image on your client.
In Total, coworking is and will be the most successful bet for freelancers and regular employees alike to hone their skills, build up connections, be a part of the community, forge themselves according to the demands of their clients and most importantly work without feeling pressured and burdened.