The Coffee Shop Ain’t For Everybody: 3 Unconventional Workspaces For You & Your Small Business
Just weeks after Hurricane Harvey ravaged Texas and the surrounding coast, Hurricane Irma engulfed the state of Florida before affecting even more of the Southeastern United States, forcing millions to evacuate or spend days without electricity in the storm’s wake — including small business owners and entrepreneurs.
Even in the face of a natural disaster, the work to keep your brand going doesn’t stop. Without electricity or the comforts of home, could you adapt? If you evacuated to another city or state, do you know where you’d go to get the necessary work done?
Maybe you weren’t forced to leave behind your home office, brick and mortar retail space, or your favorite familiar workspace, but it still may be worth your while to find another place to tackle your workload that ISN’T your local Starbucks.
Let’s face it: The coffee shop ain’t for everybody.
While a number of girl bosses, full-time hustlers, and eager entrepreneurs may have you thinking that your area coffee shop is the best place to find inspiration over an iced latte or to make money moves over macchiatos, the chatter, smells, sounds, and overall setup of such a setting can often distract you and actually squash your work vibe.
If you find yourself displaced or you’re just looking for a change of scenery, try a few of these small business-friendly spaces that can help you take your productivity — and your brand’s growth — up a notch.
Go “Co” — While the attributes of coworking spaces differ across locations, a number offer free coffee, office supplies, and plenty of space to sprawl. In most cities, free coworking spaces are few and far between these days, but for the cost of lunch or dinner, you can score yourself a spot at a location with Wi-Fi, phone access, meeting space, and even premium amenities like private office space and showers. Coworking spaces also offer creatives, entrepreneurs, and gig economy masters opportunities for collaboration and partnership rooted in the freedom that the somewhat unconventional work setting provides. If you find yourself in another city or state, many coworking spaces welcome walk ins ready to get some work done. For good measure, do some googling and calling ahead to claim the space perfect for you and your small business, just in case.
Hit the books. Go to the library. — Most people will probably agree that local libraries haven't been poppin' since internet access became more common than milk in American households. However, these book-filled buildings can be a small business lifesaver while offering solace and a range of solid resources. In addition to internet access, libraries can offer self-made CEOs a safe, public place to meet clients or patrons and a place to research and plan their next moves — not to mention the quiet, stress-free spot you may need to take that dream concept or idea and turn it into your next success.
Librarians can also serve as great sources of insight, assistance, or even a great audience to share ideas with or to practice a sales pitch in front of. In fact, many libraries are becoming more and more receptive to featuring dedicated work space that draws small business owners to one of a community’s best resources. Just be sure to follow all branch rules, be courteous, and keep your conversations low. You may be building an empire, but you've still got to respect the law of the library while you work.
Go [auto]mobile — Let’s face it: It’s the 21st century. How many of us AREN’T already using our vehicles sometimes as moving offices and doing things like dialing into conference calls and sending emails at red lights? Based on the scope of your small business and the products and services your enterprise offers, you may find that taking your work to go is ultimately the best way to go.
To craft the right mobile office, experts advocate choosing additions and add-on’s like desks, storage space, and other modifications to make working on wheels easier and beneficial for you and your clients. Not only could a mobile office space help you work more efficiently and make the most of a lengthy commute, but it can also help you trim unnecessary business expenses and costs for utilities and upkeep tied to a retail space you may not even need. With internet access offered (for a fee, of course) in most new vehicles, why not take the show — or the small business — on the road?
These unique, yet unconventional workspace options may not be your cup of tea, but there are plenty of other options you can explore to switch up your work location options. Could you see yourself working from your local library? Do you already work from an unconventional space that keeps your work days interesting? Feel free to reach out to us here at Jali Creatives and tell us about your favorite remote office choices. If you’re looking for space ideas that don’t include the sound of grinding beans or the scent of a creative blend, we can help!