group of coworkers in a coworking space
From cost savings to increased collaboration opportunities, coworking spaces can make for ideal offices, especially for small and growing businesses. — Getty Images/Hispanolistic

Coworking spaces provide small businesses, independent contractors and other workers a space to get work done, network and participate in their local business community.

What was relatively an unknown concept 10 years ago, coworking spaces have transformed the way the modern worker interacts with the business world. Currently, there are about 17,000 coworking spaces across the world, which means understanding the benefits that come along with using them is essential to planning your business’s success.

[Read: Need a New Office? Tips for Finding the Perfect Space]

Benefits of a coworking space

From meeting other business professionals to collaborating on independent projects, coworking spaces can be a shared location where people with varying business ideas can get together and learn from one another. Joining a coworking space means pursuing a new opportunity and participating in a community of business professionalism.

While there are countless benefits, the following six are essential for any small business owner considering a move.

More networking opportunity

One of the biggest benefits of a coworking space is the opportunity to connect with other individuals. If you’re working in a home office or independent office, you could be robbing yourself of the important connections needed to drive your business forward. Sometimes, the only thing a small business is missing is the spark that proximity to other successful business owners can bring.

Increased productivity

This is especially true for small business owners working out of a home office. When we’re at home, it can be easy to get distracted. Kids need attention, the house needs to be cleaned or maintained and special projects can constantly crop up in our minds. By going to another space, you can solidify a “work mode” that can increase productivity. Many coworking spaces are accessible 24/7, so you don’t have to worry about when you need to get something done.

Coworking spaces expose you to chance and opportunity.

Boost in creativity

By working with other individuals and exposing yourself to new perspectives, coworking spaces can provide bursts of creativity. Sometimes, switching spaces and heading to a new office can allow you to refresh your mind and consider alternative solutions to business problems.

Collaboration opportunities

This benefit goes hand-in-hand with networking. Coworking spaces expose you to chance and opportunity. Who knows where a casual conversation may lead? Working in proximity to others allows quick collaboration to occur. Next thing you know, you could be hiring someone new.

[Read: Cashing in on the Anti-Open Workspace Movement]

Cost-efficiency

If you’re renting an office, there are a host of extra costs you may have to deal with — especially if your employees are looking for perks like free coffee, snacks and (occasionally) alcohol. Coworking spaces come equipped with perks like these all at one monthly rate. They also come with many built-in business services, like business mail, that can save you money in the long run. It’s important to consider what features you need before choosing the right space for your business. Cost-efficiency could be a crucial benefit to small businesses locked into leases that are too expensive.

Greater flexibility

Many coworking spaces offer very flexible agreements. If, for some reason, you need to cancel your membership, there are usually flexible options to do so. This makes it an ideal business service to try out and see how you like it. If you have a good experience, you’re set. If not, there’s no harm in canceling your membership.

Coworking spaces allow you to get out of your own bubble: By exposing you and your employees to new perspectives, you can build a better business. A comfortable and efficient workspace is essential to any business’s success. While there are many benefits, choosing the right coworking space can be difficult. It’s important to review our guide for how to choose the right coworking space for your business before weighing your options.

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts. However, before making any business decision, you should consult a professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

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Published November 05, 2019