Many freelancers credit renting a separate office space for doing better work—and making more money!
Over the past two decades or so, knowledge working nomads have taken great satisfaction in their ability to “work anywhere”. For many working from home fits their lifestyle. They enjoy commuting in their PJs from the bedroom to the coffee maker to their laptop on the dining room table. There is, however, a growing argument in favor of freelancers heading out to an office to do their work.
Many freelancers are finding many reasons to rent an office, not the least of which is increased productivity, and ultimately, increased earnings.
If you’re a freelancer committed to the freedom of nomadic or work-at-home life, here are several reasons you might want to consider a leap back into office life.
Increased Possibilities for Networking
One of the big perks of working in an office is the increased possibilities for interaction and networking with other professionals and freelancers.
Between the local coffee shop on the corner and your favorite lunch truck, the opportunities for meeting people and expanding your network is vastly expanded.
Consider, too, the professional neighbors near your office. Doctors, non-profits, photo and video businesses, publishers, foundations and many others create fertile ground for networking opportunities throughout any given day. You also run the chance of being stimulated by the professional energy and ideas that circulate in office environments.
Higher Productivity, Efficiency and Earnings for Freelance Work
Rather than merely settling in at your dining room table or home office desk, transitioning to a professional environment surrounded by other working people doing business helps with the mental shift from home to work. It feels official and business-like, and that helps to get into a “time-to-work” mental space, with less procrastinating.
The office means focused work. You’re not watching the ever-growing laundry pile or the cat’s litter box fill up.
More focus means more productivity and getting more work done, which translates into higher earnings, due to rather than despite, paying rent for a dedicated and more professional office workspace.
Working from a home office offers all the flexibility you need to address work along with the demands of the household and family.
But, working from a home office means you’re in the home to address work along with the demands of the household and family.
As any freelancer who works from home will tell you, the lines between home, life, and work become blurred early on.
However, when you draw a distinct separation between work life and life at home, and rent a separate office, you establish a physical boundary between the two, and more successfully minimize distractions.
Make the office you rent your own and be sure to include decor and furnishings that create a pleasant work environment fostering productivity and abundance—make it a place you love to go!
Space for Appropriate/Efficient Office Furniture
Often one of the challenges as a freelancer working at home is that the workspace doesn’t appropriately meet the needs of the work.
From your dining room table or a small desk tucked into your living or guest room, it can be hard to eke out enough space among all of the furnishings and items that make your home just that… a home.
Renting an office provides you with a dedicated space with more, perhaps even ample, space to create a productive working environment expressly set up to meet your professional demands.
An office will allow you to equip the space with furnishings such as a U-shaped desk, where your computer, office equipment, and all of the other professional accoutrements are within easy and efficient reach. You can even visit with clients or colleagues in an orderly and professional manner.
As freelancers, we know how often we rely on nearby cafes, restaurants, or even city parks to meet with clients and colleagues. We can meet at our homes, too, but that would require cleaning, locking the dog in the bedroom, or making sure the baby is asleep first—all hard to schedule!
With a rented office, freelancers can far more easily invite clients and colleagues into a space that is professional in appearance and equipped for efficiency when it comes to work-related meetings.
An office can make the right first, and lasting, impression. If the space you’ve rented has been thoughtfully designed, it’s sure to be a space in which you’re proud to entertain clients. You will be taking great satisfaction in your comfortable yet professional appearance.
There’s also something inherently professional about being able to invite clients and prospective clients to meet you in your office rather than in your home or at a coffee shop. Particularly if you have your credentials, diplomas, framed press features, awards, etc., on display.
No Raiding the Fridge!
The only thing that will make you feel more inadequate than a missed deadline… is visiting the fridge frequently to eat your feelings of inadequacy over a missed deadline.
Rented office space can help mitigate the mindless trips to the refrigerator as you face the range of emotions associated with work tedium, stress and anxiety.
Your office is a place to conduct meetings with clients, network with other entrepreneurs, and stay focused on what needs to be done—not randomly snacking throughout the day.
Potential technological perks
Among the variety of benefits to be had by renting an office is the possibility of enjoying enhanced technological perks.
Some office suites provide a convenient video-teleconferencing capability, particularly advantageous if you have clients in multiple locations or internationally.
True, you may have access to peer-to-peer tools (e.g., Webex or Go-To-Meeting) from home. Nevertheless, there can be limitations such as transmission quality and the number of locations to which you can have video.
A Nice Transition Between Home and Work
As a freelancer, have you considered the buffer space you have between work and life? Essentially, the time it takes you to travel between your bedroom or the kitchen and your workspace.
While most of us have embraced freelancing to avoid long commutes to an office, there is particular benefit to be had from commuting. It lets you enjoy space and time transitioning from one important aspect of your life to the other.
Consider it a buffer zone to think or listen to audiobooks or enjoy the sunshine as you walk or bike into work. Engaging and interacting, or even just being among, passing people on the street can be a great way to disconnect from the stresses of the day—therapy in the form of people-watching!
A short commute can provide a great way to clear your head before walking through the door at home. Bonus: traveling from home to work and back again could put that step-tracker you bought years ago to good use!