I think you need to understand that white spaces are words too, so if you have extra spaces inside the p element it wont work too. Just in case:
This is text, <a>this is text inside a p element and is also a link</a>
This is another text, <img src="workplace.jpg" alt="Workplace">the image before is also a link</a>. I hope this examples will help you to understand the anchor element syntax.
The p element is a block element (it sits in a new line, because it takes all the available space, from left to right)
and the anchor, a, element is an inline element (like a word or a white space, it sits side by side with other words and inline elements, and only takes the space that its content needs).