Guest article by Amber Carson

The way in which companies operate is shifting and a third of today’s workforce is comprised of independent or freelance professionals. In the next year alone, this number is expected to rise to 40%. While many of these individuals work from home, an increasing number are finding coworking spaces a more attractive option. As a result, major metropolitan areas in the US and Europe already have multiple spaces dedicated to people in the gig economy. In fact, an article on Inc describes how more than 2,000 brand new coworking spaces opened around the world last year, with about a thousand located in the United States alone. By 2022, it’s estimated that more than 25,000 coworking spaces will be available worldwide. What are the advantages of coworking spaces? Why are they so attractive?

Better networking opportunities

Working in the coworking space industry, Meghna Agarwal told Entrepreneur that coworking spaces are the perfect venue for networking and collaboration. It allows everyone in the gig economy to gain new prospects, and guidance. “The new motto of start-ups working out of shared spaces has been to connect, create, collaborate and grow,” Agarwal said. You never know who you’ll meet and their level of influence. In line with Agarwal’s comments, Maryville University describes how the business world is all about connections especially for fresh graduates who are new to the job market, and a good coworking space can be a great place to network with freelancers working in the same industry. Coworking spaces are giving companies and professionals more than a space to work—they’re an opportunity to learn from companies and professionals in different phases of life, levels of expertise and professional experience.

It boosts productivity

Coworking spaces are conducive environments that promote productivity, especially for small business owners and freelancers who do not have the office space at home. It instills discipline by forcing you to get up, get dressed, leave your home, and stick to an efficient routine. It’s a distraction-free environment, too, which can help improve your focus and make you more productive. Moreover, coworking spaces can provide you with the necessary resources that you can utilize to advance your ideas. Film writer Lee Schneider uses the Village Workspace’s state of the art podcast studio to produce work on topics like diversity and inclusion. Aside from providing you with the right tools, coworking spaces allow you to be amongst visionaries and other like-minded people that can help you find meaning in what you’re doing. When you see other highly motivated people pouring their passion into a purposeful project, it’s hard not to be motivated and inspired.

Work-life balance

Another of the advantages of coworking spaces is that they allow you to separate your personal life from your work life, creating a balance you wouldn’t get from most corporations or even working from home. Medium notes that coworking spaces provide an opportunity to recharge your emotional batteries, through personal interactions with others. These can include something as simple as quick chats over coffee or even a lunchtime yoga class. Coworking spaces are meant to give you that clear delineation between work and home, which goes a long way towards ensuring your emotional and mental health.

It encourages a culture of idea-sharing

Coworking spaces aren’t just about providing a place where people can work. They’re also about creating more opportunities for startups and small businesses. A number of industries like entertainment and real estate benefit from coworking spaces because it allows like-minded people to share what they know with each other. For example, Amasia Entertainment co-founder Bradley Gallo told us that being in Village Workspaces helped them create successful films through an encouraging community of idea-sharing, allowing members to gain new perspectives on their work and the work of others. Business News Daily explains that coworking spaces are havens for inspiration where people come to a space to get work done, but stay for the chance to collaborate and pick the brains of fellow professionals.

The advantages of coworking spaces are many. They offer you the chance to learn from other people’s mistakes, which will come in handy when you’re trying to improve your own craft. It’s also an opportunity for you to share what you know and help others who are struggling with things within your expertise.