“Instead of thinking about how you can land a roomful of rock stars, think about the room instead…The environment has a lot more to do with great work than most people think.“ -Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson in ReWork
Whether you’re trying to get a new business off the ground, or wondering how you’re going to survive another day in the cubical jungle, you must never underestimate the power of the environment in which you choose to work.
Yes, I said choose.
The boys from ReWork go on to say that, “there’s a ton of untapped potential trapped under lame policies, poor direction, and stifling bureaucracies. Cut the crap and you’ll find that people are waiting to do great work. They just need to be given the chance.”
If you’ve been doubting your ability to do great work lately, maybe it’s time to consider a change of scenery.
Here are three ways coworking encourages greatness better than a basement, cubicle, or coffee shop:
Privacy/Exposure: The way to extract great work from yourself isn’t to lock yourself in a home office. It’s also not to abandon your to-do list for internet surfing disguised as “market research.” When you cowork, you have the opportunity to change place, time, and style of your work on a daily basis. Need to get some serious work done? Tell the host that you’re having a “me” day, and retreat to the quietest corner. Need to bitch about a nightmare client and talk about your lack of motivation? Well, that’s ok too.
Autonomy/Responsibility: When you’re working a traditional 9-5, your lack of greatness can be blamed on the boss/computer/lighting/janitor/coffee. When you’re coworking, the responsibility falls on you and you alone. Giving yourself just one night a week to work freely on projects you’re passionate about will jump start your productivity in ways you never imagined.
Praise/Constructive Criticism: We all know what it’s like to be chastised for doing something wrong, but fewer professionals know what it feels like to be praised for doing something great. Coworking provides you with a community that will applaud when you finally locate a pesky coding bug, or throw you a party when you launch a new product. Rest assured, coworkers will also tell you when an idea misses the mark, but it will be because they want you to succeed and be happy, not because they’re worried about the bottom line.
Has your work environment hindered you from doing great work in the past? Share it in a comment!