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Free from distraction, flexible working can offer a better solution than working from home
With more than two-thirds of the world’s working population now working from home at least once a week, the temptation to ditch the office completely is proving alluring to many.
But becoming siloed at home away from other people all of the time could be potentially detrimental to health. It could also hinder productivity, as well as the ability to form new business relationships that could lead to future deals further down the line. There are also occasions when it’s simply not practical to work from home.
Having access to flexible working environments is one way of establishing an effective ‘middle ground’, where staff still have the ability to work independently in quieter environments closer to where they live, while having access to a social environment with all the mod cons and office equipment they need to do the job.
There are many benefits of flexible working over working from home.
When someone starts a business, chances are they’ve come from a larger corporation before deciding to take the plunge. Going from a busy office to a spare bedroom or kitchen table may seem ideal, but it can quickly become an isolating and even distracting experience.
Having access to flexible workspace offers professionals individual space they need to focus and take calls, while still being in a location where there are other like-minded people around.
Collaboration is the name of the game for companies of all sizes, but especially startups and SMEs. If you need that website developing, why spend time and energy trawling the web when there’s a great developer sitting at a desk just down the hall?
Likewise, when they need a service, you’ll most likely be one of the first people they think of too.
Let’s face it, working from home can be distracting unless you have the most disciplined of minds. There’s a television, the kitchen, rows of DVDs to choose from… It’s often essential that a separate space is maintained in order for the working day to ‘feel’ like work. Even children’s author Roald Dahl was known to write in his garden shed.
For those that don’t do well in sheds, flexible workspace with the latest broadband tech, modern offices, meeting and breakout facilities is a much better alternative.
What customers say
With flexible workspace, all the little things are taken care of, such as reception areas where your clients can wait in comfort and IT support to keep your tech running smoothly – those are services you simply can’t get at home.
Andrew Haddleton at GIG Internet Marketing is based at the Regus centre at Wellington, Te Aro Level 2 in New Zealand where he helps companies generate sales leads. He says one of the biggest benefits of working there is the social aspect.
“We all know how annoying it is when the office chatterbox won’t leave you alone but, when you are on your own, having a few faces to see and a couple of people to chat to is a big advantage,” he says. “Working in a public space also means that you benefit from the energy of other busy people around you. A good working environment is contagious, so I definitely get more done when I am in the Regus office.”
He adds that one of the challenges of working from home is the potential distractions. “The laundry is always up-to-date!” he says. “But it can also be quite difficult to get motivated when you are in a quiet, un-energised environment. A good working environment encourages you to get on with your work.”
Alan Simberg runs Alan Simberg, LLC at the Regus site at Houston – American General – Allen Parkway in Texas, USA. A counselling psychologist and bestselling author, he says working there allows him to see clients in a professional environment while also enabling him to maintain professional and personal boundaries that might not be as straightforward to maintain in his own home.
“There are specific downsides to operating my kind of business from home,” he says. “Given the nature of my business and certain personality types of some of the people who would come to see me in my home it could be conducive to the occurrence of an uncomfortable situation, since I don’t have a separate space that could be used as an office.”
Dawn Waye is president at City Gate Property Group, a property management company based at the Houston – 5444 Westheimer Regus building. She highlights the resources available on-site, as well as the fact that it’s not always appropriate or professional to meet clients at home, as central reasons to choose flexible workspace over homeworking.
She also credits working with Regus in the early days as one of the reasons her company succeeded where some others fail. “Regus was our first office when City Gate was established,” she says. “Most business fail in the first year, and the risk declines as each year passes. It was a phenomenal option for a startup company. It mitigated our risk to have a long-term lease and allowed us to maximise our dollars and cents.”
Find out how a Regus office can help your business