Sometimes, it can be nice to meet your clients at a Starbucks. Typically, you’ve done a lot of your work on the phone or Zoom, but getting out to a fun location can make your borrowers feel at ease — and give you a nice break from your home office.
Still, if you start to feel like you’re always running out to the coffee shop or you find that you need secure WiFi or other business amenities, you might think you finally need to rent office space.
However, if you’re not ready to commit to a long-term lease, you might consider using a coworking space. Coworking spaces are an excellent way to get professional office space without committing to a long-term lease for a full-time office. Here are tips for getting the most out of coworking.
What Coworking Is — and Isn’t
Coworking spaces offer cost-sharing for your business needs. Rather than taking on all the overhead costs for an office, you share the expenses of WiFi, refreshments, security, and space. Some spaces offer mail and package delivery, receptionist services, and other business amenities. Some offer 24-hour access for those late nights, and others are only available during standard business hours.
Depending on the type of coworking space and the options you choose, you may have limits on how often you can use the space each month, so it is not likely to be a complete office replacement. Coworking works best when you use it in addition to your standard home office.
Think about the Amenities You Need
You know that you’d like an upgrade from the coffee shop or your home desk, but what do you really need? Secure high-speed internet is a definite yes, as you work with borrowers’ financial data. But what else do you need? Do you want to have the opportunity to attend exclusive networking events? Get great coffee, snacks, and even beer and wine? Have access to a street address to use instead of your home address or a PO Box?
As you explore the coworking spaces in your area, take note of the services and amenities they offer and the costs associated with each to see what will be the best fit for your needs.
Look for a Space with Private Areas
Many coworking spaces offer tiers of membership. You can pay for the lowest tier to get access to the business services plus a bullpen of working space. Higher tiers might provide an option to reserve a private office occasionally, certain days of the week, or all month.
Because you will be speaking with borrowers about personal financial matters, the ability to get private space will be vital for your business.
Use the Space Wisely
Unless you’ve contracted for an entire office every day of the week, make sure you structure your business to make the most of your location. Schedule tasks that can be done anywhere for the days you are at home and do the work that coworking serves best when you’re there. You might consider getting a coworking office for Tuesdays and Thursdays, for example, and schedule all face-to-face meetings for those days. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday can be for Zoom calls and quiet work.
Coworking can offer some great opportunities to ramp up your business without requiring you to invest in a whole office space for yourself. Investing wisely and using your coworking space to the fullest extent is key.
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