So, you’ve decided to finally start your business? Congratulations! There was probably a lot of work until you got to where you are at this moment, but there is still some major work ahead. Your startup needs more than a good idea and some money to get started – it also needs an office. Not all offices are created equal, and you will need some time (and probably a lot of patience) to find the one that’s perfect for you.
First things first: what is ‘office’ for you? Do you see yourself and your coworkers working in cubicles in a huge building, with neon lights and small bathrooms? Do you really need a ‘corporate life’ in order to be productive and get best results? If your small idea thrived while you’ve been working in your garage at 2am, you might want to consider some, less ‘conservative’ ideas.
Never underestimate the stimulating power of unconventional working space when you set off to find yourself a nice office.
There are all the technicalities and physical attributes of a space: the square meters of available space, the floor plan, the number of windows, how big is the bathroom, and which side of the world the office faces. On the other hand, there’s also the feeling that come with a place, and this is equally important as the physical attributes. Does the space feel right? Do you feel comfortable there? Do you think the business could thrive there? Do you feel encouraged and motivated to work? Sometimes you can’t put your finger on what exactly is wrong with a place, but if it doesn’t feel right and you don’t feel good there, don’t go for it.
Your office is never really just an office, and it represents plenty of things, one of which is your company culture. It’s important to remember that running a successful company is a lot like taking care of a living organism. It lives, breathes, grows, and evolves every day, and so do the people who are running it and working in it. Office is never just a place where you go to work, but a representation of what your company stands for. White walls and ceiling, cubicles, and neon lights are rarely inspiring, and if your team consists of a creative, cheerful, and loud bunch, they will need a space that will allow them to be who they are.
If you intend to accommodate clients in your office in the future, it might be a good idea to have a space that will make them feel comfortable and more: they should also be able to experience the company’s culture and atmosphere, because this will give them a general idea of what to expect from you.
Happy, satisfied clients are always the best advertisement, and when you leave a good impression, they will likely let their friends and coworkers know of you. If your potential clients see how happy your employee (and you) are in the company, they will get a good impression which will certainly last.
If you have no intention of organizing long and boring staff meetings every day, you really don’t need a meeting room. Your local café will work just fine, at least for the time being. If you’re selling something that needs to be stored, do you really need to be storing it in an office? Having numerous reputable storage solutions in your local area can make your life a lot easier during the move. It’s a wonderful solution for bulk storage and it won’t cost you a fortune. Your office usually needs only a comfy place to be, a laptop, working wifi, a fridge, and a kettle. You simply have to see what your business needs and be able to compromise and have more than one space at your disposal (if need be).
When your entrepreneurial idea finally grows enough that it needs its own space, it’s always a reason for celebration. Still, you should try to save some money and not break the bank when looking for the perfect office. Improvise, compromise, and let the space grow along with your business.