Co-Working or Working Remotely: Which is Right for You?

Entrepreneurs are faced with an important decision regarding where they will work, and Raymond Marx compares two popular options.

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Co-Working or Working Remotely: Which is Right for You? by Raymond Marx
Co-Working or Working Remotely: Which is Right for You? by Raymond Marx

Among the many decisions that small business owners must make, one of the most important will determine where they will work. Technology has made remote work more accessible, so business professionals can work from almost anywhere. Depending on the nature of your business, you may not even need an office. Working remotely or in a coworking space can both be excellent options, but each comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages

Working remotely can save you both time and money. It doesn’t require a commute, so it can save you time that would typically be spent on driving or taking public transportation. Working from home doesn’t require you to pay rent for office space, which can save you a lot of money in the long run. You may even be able to write off certain business expenses on your taxes, like your phone bill or office furniture. Remote work affords you flexibility when it comes to balancing life and work, so you can walk the dog, prepare dinner, and do much more. In spite of these advantages, there are a few downsides to working remotely. Entrepreneurs who work from home need to have a strong sense of self-discipline and sharp focus. Pets, kids, and household chores can make staying productive at home difficult. Furthermore, there is a lack of face-to-face interactions that can result in a lack of collaboration. 

Coworking spaces are a nice middle ground bridging remote work and traditional office spaces. A coworking space provides access to other professionals, which can help to elevate mood and spark inspiration. Additionally, human interaction means that these spaces can be great places to make new connections and find networking opportunities. Unfortunately, you may still be prone to distractions because many coworking spaces have open floor plans, though some do offer private offices. While it will still probably cost less than a traditional office, you still need to pay rent, which can range between $100 to $400 a month depending on the space size and area of the space. 

The three big things to consider before deciding on a workspace are productivity, socialization, and cost. If you think you’d be most productive in your own environment, then working remotely may be your best bet. Otherwise, a coworking space may be a sound investment. When it comes to the social aspect, being surrounded by other people can either be inspiring or distracting. Each coworking space will be different, but depending on the terms, you may be able to find the best of both worlds by renting space on an as-needed basis to allow you to take advantage of the perks of the space while giving you the freedom to still work in your personal space.

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