Americans don't go into the office as much as they used to, but they're working more than ever. Inevitably, that leads to many of them spending long hours at neighborhood coffee shops, toiling away. To this end,The Wall Street Journalhas come up with the following list of rules for working at coffee shops without overburdening them:
1.) Work only where and when you're wanted, and ask first.
While many cafe owners are happy to fill their seats with latte-bingeing workers during off-peak hours, not all places are so welcoming. Do your research before you head out—and understand that how wanted you are can fluctuate day to day, or even hour to hour.
2.) Buy first, sit second.
It’s a coffee shop, not the Oklahoma land rush. Don’t put your bag in one of the last empty seats if there’s a line at the register when you walk in. Either wait your turn or find another spot to do your business.
3.) Buy more than one small coffee during the day.
Some say ordering drinks or food once an hour is good. If you’re worried about cost, consider that spending, say, $10 per day, five days a week over a month will cost around $200. Compare that to $400, the cost of the cheapest monthly WeWork access in Manhattan—which only gets you a communal “hot desk,” not reserved office space.
4.) It's not actually your office, so only take up one space.
Don’t commandeer communal tables, don’t bring too many gadgets or spread out your papers. Don’t recreate your ideal work station. Instead, confine your belongings to a single seat and keep your setup simple.
5.) Don't take work calls.
Subjecting fellow patrons to your dial-in conference calls is rude and awkward. But Skype calls are much worse. “I’ve seen people take video calls from coffee shops, where I’ve turned around and been able to see myself on their screen,” one owner says. “It’s always a little wild.”
6.) Have basic empathy for employees and other patrons.
Don’t ask baristas to watch your stuff while you go to the bathroom. That’s not their job. And, lastly, don’t be weird about outlets—if there aren’t enough and you’re running low on power, find somewhere else to work. Like maybe your home.
Source: Wall Street Journal