Why Your Coworking Space is Bleeding Your Business Dry

We’re a hardy group, us entrepreneurs.

We know how to buckle down, hustle up and get it done.

We forego countless niceties of the buttoned-down cubicle workers, while we tighten our belts and carry on.

You want the cushy perks of health insurance, a retirement fund, free all-you-can-eat and an in-house Starbucks? Go work at Google. Our offices don’t have Starbucks — our office, more often than not, is Starbucks.

But we’re okay with that. We’re okay with all of that. Because we’ve got a bigger plan in mind.

And that’s precisely why coworking spaces are so mind-boggling to me.

To rent a private office in a coworking space in Manhattan today, you will pay a minimum of $700 a month, and generally, upwards of $1,000 — sometimes as much as $1,400 — for a desk and some air, and I don’t mean a window.

For most entrepreneurs, especially in the early years, this is a chunk of revenue too significant to dismiss.

Every entrepreneur knows that it takes money to make money. When you’re trying to grow your business and get it off the ground, staying lean is crucial. If you don’t want your business to be stuck on the bottom tier, then you need to minimize your expenses and put every penny available back into the business. This is Growing a Business 101.

Having office space can be great — but it is a luxury, and entrepreneurs that want to succeed spend only on necessities.

“Well, it is a necessity for me,” you say, “because I spend time every day networking with the other entrepreneurs in the space.”

Go to networking events. Utilize your LinkedIn. Research experts in your field and then reach out to them. I’ve worked from home for the past eight years-plus and I have never had to worry about finding contacts when I was ready to grow or outsource, because I networked on my virtual coworking space: the internet.

“What about a social life?”

Would it be nice? Yes. It is necessary? Again, no. Wanting a social life is fine and normal and healthy, but you don’t have to strangle your business to make friends.

When should you consider paying for space? When your business has grown to the point that you need employees. At that point, working from home is no longer viable. But when it’s just you, by yourself, chances are you have a table and some air at home, and you don’t need to spend money to sit by yourself in another location.

Take that $1,000, funnel it back into the business, and with your drive and determination, you’ll soon be ready to buy the coworking space.

As for me? If you need me, I’ll be in my room.