A note from a Switch Coworking member:
As most entrepreneurs and freelancers can relate to, I am focused on developing my company. However, another aspect my fellow entrepreneurs can relate to is that my company is not generating the funds for me to afford office space or the costs associated with it. We need to keep costs down! Though Austin has some incredible coffee shops, many that I have frequented not only for some strong coffee but as a workplace to work on projects, I was ready for a change.
Coffee shops are normally too crowded
Austin is experiencing immense growth with people constantly moving into the city. As a result, coffee shops (and honestly, any restaurant) are crowded with people. Don’t even get me started during finals season when college students head out in droves to coffee shops and take up several tables. There is a lack of consistent space which can become stressful when you need to finish a project with an impending deadline but are forced to spend time roaming for some free space.
There is no community at a coffee shop
By freelancing or pursuing entrepreneurship, you forfeit the built-in network that you would automatically create by working in a traditional company or firm. A strong community is important for creativity and business but creating such a community is difficult in a coffee shop when people are going in and out and customers range from a hurried mom stopping by for a few minutes to buy a cup of coffee to a college student studying for his accounting final all day.
A few $4 cups of coffee a day can add up
As someone who is dependent on caffeine, I drink several cups of coffee throughout the day to keep my energy up so I can finish my work. However, let’s face it. Coffee is expensive. Even if you are avoiding Starbucks and its pricey cups of coffee, several cups of coffee begin to add up which becomes a problem when you are working out of a coffee shop several times a week.
Outlets weren’t easily accessible
If you think the number of seats in a popular coffee shop is limited, the number of outlets is even fewer. In an age where we need to be plugged in at all times and people tend to have numerous electronic devices, this poses a problem when we forget to juice up our cellphones beforehand or our laptops are dying after working on a project all day.
It is not incredibly professional
Entrepreneurship is tough and standing out from competition for clients and funding is tougher. As a result, brand reputation and legitimacy are important. Meeting with clients in a coffee shop may not only have them questioning your stability as a business, but may prompt them to go with a competitor instead! Having an “office” can make all the difference when running your business.
Though I will admit that there are perks to working out of a coffee shop such as the mobility from traveling from one shop to the next, finding Switch Cowork has been a more suitable fit to my entrepreneurial needs. Not only do I have a consistent space to work in (with coffee and outlets provided!), but I am surrounded by fellow entrepreneurs whom I can bounce ideas off or just talk with. Making the switch from coffee shop to coworking space has been one of the best decisions for my company and I cannot recommend the switch enough!