Freelancers, entrepreneurs, and telecommuters all generally work from home. Working from home can be great, but everyone needs a chance of pace after a while. One of the best alternatives is to work from a coffee shop. However, there are a few essential things to know before you try to get work done in a coffee shop. Here are five rules for working successfully in such an environment.
1. Find the right seating. Slumping down on a comfortable sofa isn't conducive to working productively. Aside from the psychological factor, sitting in a non-ergonomic chair will eventually result in discomfort and pain. Try to find seating that supports your lower back and doesn't force you to hunch too far over your work. Maintain proper posture as long as you remain seated.
2. Stay disciplined. A coffee shop doesn't feel like a typical sterile work environment. You will be enjoying a drink, and most of the people around you will be relaxing and chatting. It can be easy to let the atmosphere overwhelm you and slack off. Just remember you are there to work. Remind yourself of your goals for the day. Create a plan and stick with it.
3. Avoid distractions. The biggest issue with working in a coffee shop might be the potential distractions. People will be talking, and music will probably be playing. Now, some folks can easily ignore such distractions. If you aren't one of those people, consider wearing headphones and listening to some music that doesn't distract you. Or try using noise-canceling headphones.
4. Be respectful. It's essential to treat the establishment you are making your temporary workspace properly. Save room for other patrons by taking up the smallest table available. Don't download huge files over the shared Wi-Fi. Don't listen to audio without using headphones. If you are staying for more than a few hours, consider buying more drinks as you continue working (or leave a sizable tip).
5. Stay secure. The free Wi-Fi offered by coffee shops is a nice amenity, but like any public Wi-Fi, it carries risks. Never log into important financial accounts such as your bank and credit card accounts while on public Wi-Fi. Depending on your line of work, you may also need to keep your client's information safe.
Working in the same place every day can get old pretty quickly. A little variety can increase motivation and productivity, so working from a coffee shop is often a great idea. Follow the five rules above, and you'll have a good day of work.