27. July 2016–
People say being a freelancer is great, because you can work at anytime from anywhere. Co-working spaces, home, any place that has wifi – welcome to an open world. But to me, I prefer being in my client’s office. And here is why.
Today is the absolute exception. Today shouldn’t be the day to write this piece – but it is. I slept horribly, it’s early, I’m still in my PJs, sitting with my coffee on my sofa, working.
My days usually don’t start like that. I usually get up like everybody else, get ready and go to an office. I do admit that most of the time I am the last person entering the building, but that’s a decision I make depending on my daily schedule or on other clients I see first.
I like the office and I need it
I have worked from home and from coffee places with wifi, which we have plenty of in Berlin before. And that is where I learned why I like and need offices.
I do miss out on information when not around.
Skype, Slack, emails, whatever it is – I realized that even if it’s not information that is relevant to my particular work, it’s good to get a feeling what is important to the company and to my co-workers. Being gone for one or two days a week, for a few hours, or when traveling every once in awhile is one thing, being gone all the time is a different thing.
Home is where…
I decided to treat work time more like work time and time outside the office more like off-time again. I try to work less on the weekend, try to focus more once I work and not to stop in-between and get lost on Pinterest or whatever – I try to get things done as fast as possible, even if I have plenty of time. And sometimes that is easier when you connect certain tasks to a location. Like work to an office.
Also, having to get up, get a shower, go to work and at some point close the laptop and go home helps me to have a routine. Because yes, there are days where I work from home, when I don’t shower before after lunch. But these days are my exceptions and I don’t want them to become the rule.
I love the company’s staff
I like people. Like, in general. And speaking for myself, the longer I stay with a client, a company or a project, the better I get to know the people around me. And that is how I also found a handful of people I appreciate a lot, I learn from or I can help, but also friends. People I see in my free time, people who I trust and who trust me – with work and private matters. And yes, I do look forward to seeing them on a Monday.
Also, my long-term client never makes me feel like an external person, but integrates me kindly. I’m invited to Christmas parties and company lunches. Sure enough, part of showing my appreciation is to behave like a team member. That, along with other things, includes showing up on a regular basis.
Because I can and because they let me
I go to the office because I can choose to do it or not. I think, if one would ask me to get anywhere every day at 9 am, I wouldn’t like it. Coming there is my own choice. There are days where I work from elsewhere, for example when I travel or visit conferences. But in general, I’m in Berlin and I go to my long-term client’s office.
Also, they let me be. I have a set desk, but I could also move around, if I wanted.
Are you a freelancer as well? How do you feel about it? Feel free to share your thoughts with us.
Also, maybe our list of co-working spaces is interesting to you.