“It’s like being interviewed for a shared flat,” my German friend, the freelance TV producer, says to me one Wednesday morning over one of those pungent Berlin coffees. Having left our laptops gently purring on our dining table desks, we are now sitting outside a local cafe reinvigorating our brains with caffeine and a vitamin-C-laden fruit salad. After three years working from home, the washing machine peeps have interrupted the flow of my friend’s creative juices one time too many and she has finally decided to find herself a real desk in a co-working space.
She is not alone: approximately 80,000 people worldwide are currently using co-working spaces, and Berlin is one of the capitals for it. In the post-financial-crisis digital age, swathes of ambitious young people are shunning traditional careers and looking instead to freelance projects or setting up their own business as alternative paths to professional greatness. And it turns out that not all of these digital nomads are happy to work surrounded by last night’s dirty dishes or with the ever-alluring TV in the corner telling them it really is alright to watching two hours of N-TV (the German new channel) every lunchtime because its ‘educational’. READ MORE »