Co-working spaces are emerging as a bit of a secret weapon for Australia’s creative freelancers.
Each day, these creative types venture out into an office-like environment near their home to rub shoulders with others, get some creative inspiration, pick up new freelance projects, get an instant social life, be motivated by others, find new ideas from like-minded creatives to help get those creative juices flowing, and – well, just to get out of the house!
It’s not surprising given that these increasingly trendy co-working spaces charge as little as $30 a day, or perhaps $120 a week – to be able to call it your own. And there’s no denying that the perks far outweigh a home office set-up.
Entrepreneurial landlords of these increasingly trendy inner-city spaces are also dangling various incentives to lure bright creative minds. These include access to a shared receptionist, yoga classes, IT support, social functions and even free kayaking.
Today, creative freelancers told The Freelance Collective’s film crew that for them, co-working spaces allowed them to do their best work. They tried working from home, but it just wasn’t bringing the best out of them. Co-working spaces make them more accountable – their ‘colleagues’ expect to see them at a certain time each day. They get to have coffee breaks and catch-ups with people who think like them. And the buzz in these spaces keeps their motivation levels high.
Also, not only do they get to bring in clients and an address to add to your website and business cards, some get also often get website assistance, reception support and a host of other add-ons that make it an increasingly compelling proposition – including yoga classes and even a stocked kitchen.
We visited three Sydney co-working spaces today, and our film crew were welcomed with open arms. The stories about their freelance life started flowing instantly.
First stop was Sydney’s Co-Working space for the creative industry, Commune. It was amazing. Exposed brick walls, a huge sun-drenched casual space that the freelancers that reside here had clearly made their own. It even had the obligatory vintage Vespa near the stairs.
These creative freelancers happily talked while we filmed them telling us about their skills, what makes them tick, and what they love about freelancing.
A few of them insisted we check out The Makers around the corner, and we couldn’t resist a peek. It was gorgeous – definitely an amazing space to work in.
Then, we headed over to I Central by The Start Society – a co-working space for professional tech start-ups.
We wanted to find out what these mostly client types look for when hiring a quality Australian freelance creative. And they were more than willing to share.
And we look forward to sharing these stories with all of you in the coming weeks.
The common theme? That the best freelance gigs are the ones that land on your lap out of the blue. The ones that you don’t have to chase. You just open your laptop, and there’s an email saying you have been chosen.
But getting found by a client that needs your skills – but has never heard of you – isn’t that easy. Unless you can rely on past clients or friends to give you a recommendation.
But what about if someone on the other side of the country needs someone for a particular project that you would be perfect for? How will they ever track you down?
That’s why we created The Freelance Collective. So you can get found by that client you don’t even know exists yet.
We boost all our profile holders via our social networks, too. Because you’re awesome talent.
Have you got your profile yet? www.thefreelancecollective.com.au
Considering a co-working space?
Questions to ask:
- Many of these spaces specialise in a particular type of freelance community, so ask for a breakdown of tenant types before deciding if it’s a community you could benefit from.
- Ask about the standard services the space provides, including car parking.
- Speak to other tenants and find out what they love about the co-working space you’re considering.
- Consider transport options and check out nearby lunch-spots and other services.
- Ask about add-ons and decide if they could really benefit your business.
- When to say ‘no’ to a client. And how to do it without burning bridges. - February 22, 2016
- Why freelancers shouldn’t be afraid to play with the big boys - October 19, 2015
- Why freelancers love Sydney’s co-working spaces - October 8, 2015