Bhatia is a freelance writer He does his morning chores and gets ready.
And then he waits.
He waits for 2 hours and then leaves for the cafe.
In the cafe, he has his eyes on a nice quiet cosy corner by the window.
To his dismay, it is already occupied by someone else. Now he has to walk to the seat just beside the door.
Soon enough, a group of noisy students barges into the cafe.
Bhatia just cannot focus on his work. The noise created by the students is drowning his concentration.
He orders 3 cappuccinos every day. It costs him 600 per day.
He looks for a power plug point to charge his phone. The nearest plug point is three tables away. Now he has to stand there till his phone gets sufficiently charged.
Bhatia is frustrated with the problems he faces working at a cafe. He does not know about the existence of coworking spaces.
But he soon will.
After he moves into a coworking space, life changes for Bhatia. Things seem so much better at this coworking space than they did at cafes. The coworking space is helping bring out the best in him.
Coworking spaces are perfect for freelancers such as Bhatia. They offer workspaces that combine collaboration and cooperation at very affordable prices. Freelancers have a certain budget to maintain and coworking spaces make sure they don’t burn holes in the pockets of freelancers.
So, it is clear that coworking spaces are better than cafes.
Not convinced? I wasn’t done yet.
How are coworking spaces better than cafes?
Coworking spaces ensure the safety of your belongings
One of the major things that a workspace should ensure is the protection and safety of your belongings.
You don’t want your belongings tampered with or stolen when you leave your workspace for a toilet break or some other reason. Cafes are visited by all types of people. Some of them may be kids who just wanna play around with things.
Coworking spaces offer workstations that are personal. Unlike cafes, everyone who enters a coworking space is a worker.
Coworking spaces are much more cost-effective than cafes
Coworking spaces are the cheapest options for a workspace, given the amenities.
At first glance, it might look like cafes are much cheaper than coworking spaces but if we take into consideration the amenities that a coworking space provides, coworking spaces beat cafes by a large margin.
On average, a freelancer working at a cafe drinks 3 cups of coffee, if he spends around 6 hours in that cafe.
At a decent cafe, the 3 cups of coffee would amount to 500-600 rupees. Also, coffee is not the only thing you’ll be consuming throughout your time in the cafe. The smell of food in the cafe can get even the strongest willed individual distracted.
So, on average, a freelancer would spend about 800-900 a day. When added over for 30 days, it costs him 2400-2700 rupees a month for just the six hours that he spends every day in the cafe.
Now, let’s take a look at what a coworking space charges you. Coworking spaces come with a supply of coffee. There’s a cafeteria too that has reasonably priced food. Add to that amenities like free WiFi, comfortable chairs and well-designed office spaces. Most of these aren’t available at a cafe.
Coworking spaces also provide a variety of indoor games such as table tennis, foosball, carrom, and darts, most of which aren’t available at cafes. A flexible seat at a coworking space costs around 4,500 rupees. But if you take into consideration the amenities available at the coworking spaces, it looks cheap compared to cafes.
Coworking spaces are devoid of distractions
Coworking spaces are occupied by people who are all either freelancers or employees of small or big organizations.
Everyone who’s present at a coworking space is there because he/she is serious about their work.
In comparison, cafes are frequented by people who are there on leisure. They’re there to enjoy a cup of coffee, meet a friend or just pass the time.
So they don’t need to maintain any form of decorum.
It can be very difficult to focus on work amidst the loud talking of other people in the cafe, constant clattering of dishes and music. Coworking spaces ensure minimal disturbance so that you can perform to your best.
Apart from noise, cafes can also be distracting as the smell of food can make one lose his/her focus.
Cafes usually serve a variety of delicious dishes and during work, it is necessary that food is not a distraction.
Humans have a tendency to see what’s happening in the life of others.
Cafes play host to a variety of people and depending on what they’re doing or talking about, workers’ attention may divert towards them.
Coworking spaces do away with distractions of such kind. They serve as a community of like-minded individuals who are there to work.
Coworking spaces offer much better infrastructure for work that cafes
Coworking spaces are designed and built for the purpose of creating a community of hard-working and motivated workers.
The coworking space is designed in a way to attract working professionals. In contrast, cafes are designed and built for the purpose of serving coffee and food to customers. It is not designed to host meetings or serve as office substitutes. The furniture at coworking spaces is such that they facilitate long hours of intense brainstorming sessions.
Compared to this, the furniture at cafes is suitable for customers who visit the cafe for a short time.
Coworking spaces come with meeting rooms and conference rooms. They serve as ideal meeting places for clients. They are the perfect balance of professional and informal. In contrast, cafes do not provide a conference room and a meeting room for obvious reasons.
They are designed in a way to ensure customers have coffee and food and leave in an hour or so.
Coworking spaces offer much better networking opportunities than cafes
Coworking space is an area where like-minded individuals from different backgrounds and work cultures come together to work, sharing and imparting knowledge in the process.
One of the more unique advantages of working at a coworking space is networking.
Coworking spaces host a variety of workers, working in a variety of fields.
As a freelancer or an employee working in an organization, you will need professionals from other fields. Networkings lets professionals from different fields connect with each other.
These connected professionals can be motivated to create something together that they couldn’t have otherwise.
It also saves resources spent on searching for suitable professionals. As you personally know the professional as he works with you in the same co-working space, you do not have to go out to search for one.
Unlike cafes, coworking spaces offer 24×7 access
One of the biggest advantages that coworking spaces have over cafes is 24×7 access. Members of a coworking space can access a coworking space at any time of the day or night.
This is in stark contrast to cafes, which are open for a maximum of 12-14 hours. And even if one were to spend the entirety of the duration of 12-14 hours, one had to drink quite a lot of coffee and eat quite a lot of food to justify his occupying a cafe seat. This would burn a big hole in his pocket and still not offer 24×7 access.
Many workers need to work at night.
Coworking spaces remain open during the night to ensure that members can work even in the dead of night.
Coworking spaces give members a proper structure
Work ethics is necessary for a worker, be it a freelancer or an employee working in a small or big organization.
Coworking spaces provide an atmosphere where work is the prime objective. It’s like going to the office but only much cooler. There are other workers around who have the same objective. Such an ambience is healthy for any worker.
In contrast, cafes have a much more laid back vibe. People visit cafes to relax and not to work, so the resultant vibe is such.
Visiting a cafe for work every day does not make a freelancer feel like his work is important.
Any worker, be it a freelancer or an employee, needs structure to succeed in his/her endeavour.
Bhatia has read through the above 6 points of how coworking spaces are better than cafes. He is convinced about the benefits of coworking spaces and intends to book his own dedicated desk by next week itself.
The purpose of this article is not to belittle cafes in any way but only to help readers realize the fact that when cafes serve a different purpose than coworking spaces do.
Work is worship.
Coworking spaces provide members with an ambience that facilitates the community spirit amidst hard work and dedication, something that cafes cannot and do not hope to provide.