You’ve heard about coworking space – perhaps you’ve even tried one out – but what is it about these unique workspaces that makes them so popular? And when it comes to app developers, are they actually effective in promoting creativity and enhancing productivity?
The Appeal of Coworking Spaces For App Devs
Coworking spaces have been around in some form or fashion for years, but they’ve become much more popular over the last decade. In particular, the rise of freelance app developers and other remote working positions has created a need for more places to work. And as the research shows, coworking spaces are a fantastic solution.
There are a few reasons why:
Coworking spaces help people see their work as meaningful
Researchers have studied coworking spaces for years and have always been intrigued by the psychological impact. Specifically, people who belong to these spaces report levels of thriving that approach an average of 6 on a 7-point scale. (This is a full point higher than the average for employees who work in a traditional office space.)
Among other things, this meaning may come from working in a culture where it’s the norm to help people out – without any agenda or hidden motives. There are also a variety of workers with different backgrounds, which stimulates diversity in thought and ideology. So instead of constantly being surrounded by other developers, coworking spaces provide a chance to work alongside marketers, freelance writers, small business owners, accountants, and even legal professionals. This diversity of thought sparks greater creativity (something that’s paramount when developing apps).
Coworking spaces provide more job control and flexibility
Most coworking offices are accessible 24/7. This gives app developers the choice to come early in the morning, stay late at night, or change up their schedules as they see fit. They can also choose to work out in the open, grab a secluded office or nook, or participate in a collaborative space.
But coworking spaces also create some structure, which is often necessary for freelancers. As Harvard Business Review explains, “Too much autonomy can actually cripple productivity because people lack routines. Coworkers reported that having a community to work in helps them create structures and discipline that motivates them. Thus, paradoxically, some limited form of structure enables an optimal degree of control for independent workers.”
Coworking spaces create a sense of healthy community
The beauty of a coworking space is that it gives app developers and other entrepreneurs a sense of community – one that normally would only be found in a traditional office workplace. But this sort of community is different.
As opposed to a normal workplace where employees are often competing against each other for clients, praise, raises, and promotions, a coworking space allows developers to be themselves. They don’t feel like they’re competing against one another, so ideas can be shared more freely.
Coworking spaces remove certain responsibilities
When you only work from home, you’re responsible for everything. In a coworking space, some of these responsibilities are covered for you.
For example, most coworking spaces offer coffee, snacks, printers, copiers, paper, ink, and other basic office supplies. While these may seem like small perks, they add up to save you a significant amount of time and energy. This means less stress and more opportunities to focus on the important work at hand.
Finding the Right Fit
As we’ve discussed coworking spaces in this article, we’ve made a bunch of assumptions. The reality is that not all coworking spaces are the same. Some are highly appealing and comfortable, while you’ll discover that others simply aren’t worth the monthly fee.
If you’re interested in joining a coworking space, take some time to visit and compare different ones in your area. You’ll quickly see which ones are a cut above the rest.
As KettleSpace explains, “You’ll want to identify the amenities that are important to you. Consider WiFi, seating arrangements, beverages, snacks, meeting space, quiet areas, reception, printing and so forth. Not all of these are important to everyone, and not all spaces are created equal.”
You’ll also want to think about the location of the coworking space. Consider how near/far it is from your house, gym, kids’ school, etc. Is traffic bad, or is it easy to zip in and out? Practical considerations like these do matter.
In terms of being an app developer, what’s important to you? Certain coworking spaces may allow you to become more plugged into your niche. Others might have a reputation for helping developers find potential clients. Be sure to research the options in your area to find out more.
In order to reap the rewards that coworking spaces offer, make sure you’re taking all of these factors into account. It’s all about what works for you. Patiently wait for the right fit.