Saturday, February 28, 2015
If you are serious about your business, you should not be using Starbucks at your office. Sure the aromas are great, the white noise is abundant, and the wifi is free. However, as much as you may take your business seriously, other people won’t take you seriously.
You’ve undoubtedly seen the cliches of would-be screenwriters working on their next masterpiece while sipping on their venti something-or-other. Unfortunately, this cliche lends itself to stereotyping anyone furiously pecking away at keys during office hours at Starbucks.
First and foremost, the atmosphere at Starbucks is not conducive to a successful business. Yes you are saving yourself some overhead by not renting an office or paying for internet. However, you are sacrificing a productive environment.
What about all those white noise studies, you ask? Sure, white noise has been proven to improve productivity but only to the extent that the work is your own. White noise does not improve the productivity of a conference call or in-person meeting. If you are in a conference room, you wouldn’t purposely turn on ambient noise. The ambient noise can cause distraction and make it more challenging to communicate.
Even in the unlikely event that you rarely communicate with other people for you business, there is no guarantee that this white noise will stay that way. It is very easy for a rowdy group of caffeinated high school students to spend their lunch right next to your seat, I mean “office”. Alternatively, the coffee shop may empty out leaving you with the only noise coming from the baristas’ banter. An idle conversation does not serve as productive white noise.
It is very hard to argue against accessing free internet. Internet companies enjoy charging the world a premium for what is an everyday necessity. So kudos to you for reaping the benefits of free Starbucks internet.
Now, it is time to squash your triumph. While the internet at the coffee shop may be pretty reliable to everyday web browsing, email checking, and cat video watching, it is not useful for major internet usage. Don’t get me wrong, Starbucks has some pretty fast internet and have even partnered with Google. In fact, they have the fastest public internet around.
However, there will come a time when you try to attach or download a file that is too much for the free wifi to handle. Whether it is a large program file or a presentation full of multimedia via Dropbox, you are certain to be waiting an incredibly long time for your file.
Offices Are Abundant
For San Franciscans, you live in quite possibly the trendiest area to have a growing business. There are incredibly talented people living in your area that are just waiting to join your team. Even if the city doesn’t compare in size to places such as New York or Los Angeles, it makes due with what it has.
There is more than enough office space to go around. Your business should be taking advantage of getting into these incredible spaces while they are still available. So instead of taking up real estate at a coffee shop, you should be utilizing the real estate of companies that have set up shared office spaces that come fully equipped. These companies have specifically set up shop for growing businesses with changing needs.
You’re a Legit Business
One of the major reasons you should be avoiding Starbucks as your office is because you are a legitimate business. As stated earlier, if you really take your business seriously, you should be serious about your office space.
Your clientele is expecting a business with an office. Working out of a coffee shop does not exactly exude the aura or success and confidence. Sure, you can meet at a coffee shop once or twice. But you can’t expect to run your business in its entirety if it means you are inhabiting a single chair in an overcrowded coffee shop.
Have your own brick and mortar office shows clients that you are in fact, legitimate. They can see that you’ve at least built up enough success to occupy an office. Without an office it may seem as if you are doing this business on the side or even worse, as a scam.
So for the sake of your business, the other customers at Starbucks, and your sanity; get a real office and avoid using Starbucks as your substitute for one.
About the author:
Andrew Fujii is a marketing professional with expertise in digital/web and content marketing. He is also a copywriter for multiple agencies producing copy for blogs, articles, websites, product packaging, mobile apps, and more.