Every few months, I have an opportunity to write a column for Indy Spectator. Below is a piece posted on December 19th.
In April, my job as marketing manager got eliminated (err, restructured) and a few months later I launched a marketing consulting firm—Keyhole Marketing. (I wouldn’t be a good marketer if I didn’t take this chance to plug the company, now would I?)
With this new gig, I typically work out of my home…at least until the extroverted side of my personality takes over. At least once a day, this side of me riles up and drags me away to some local coffeehouse. (It can be very persuasive and demanding.) As a result, it’s made me into a sort of coffeehouse nomad, traveling from café to café in search of the best locale to set up shop.
In that search, I’ve found that there are only a handful of joints that offer good out-of-the-home workspaces. Lots of places offer decent food and drink, but not all offer my top four essentials:
1. Power: There needs to be plenty of electrical outlets. If I have to bring an extension cord to reach your two available outlets, I’m probably not coming back. Give me easy access and I’ll stay to sip your coffees/teas for hours.
2. Elbowroom: I dig tables that provide enough workspace area to fit a laptop AND a mouse…without having to pull two or three tables together.
3. Seating: I like a place that offers ample seating capacity…without the feeling of claustrophobia. Give me options to rest my rump, but don’t overcrowd it by squeezing in as much furniture as the fire code allows. Find the right balance for your space.
4. Climate: If people have to yell to be heard, it’s a problem. Music should be at such a level where it simply fills in the background and conversations should not be bouncing off the walls.
With all this exhaustive research, I’ve found three coffeehouses that meet (and exceed) these criteria: Soho Café & Gallery (Carmel); Hubbard & Cravens in Meridian-Kessler area; and Calvin Fletcher’s Coffee Company (Fountain Square). Whether you’re up north, near Broad Ripple or downtown, each one makes a great out-of-the-home office space.
But don’t just take my word for it. Try them out and look for me…I’ll be the one working away in orange headphones.