Co-working space is an environment that’s designed to accommodate people from different companies who come to do work.
Co-working space is characterized by shared facilities, services, and tools. Sharing infrastructure in this way helps to spread the cost of running an office across members, but co-working spaces are more than just a way of reducing overhead.
Co-working spaces are community centers, collaboration hubs, and social spaces where workers from different backgrounds can come together to share expertise and explore new ideas.
A co-working space is a social environment, and the ability to mingle and share ideas with fellow workers inevitably creates meaningful connections. To start networking in a co-working space, offer support or trade services in a casual conversation. Keep it as light and friendly as possible, and don’t push sales too hard or force conversations — this can turn connections off.
Benefits of co-working space
- Networking and community events
One of the most commonly touted benefits of co-working is the ability to connect with people you otherwise wouldn’t meet. Part of this comes from working alongside new people every day, but elements of a community are also built into workspace solutions like We-work.
Monthly networking events are an easy way to find fresh collaborators and exercise your networking know-how, while the programming of educational workshops, yoga classes, catered lunches, and seasonal markets helps you to turn those introductions into lasting relationships—and possibly new business.
- Reduce loneliness; increase connection
When the alternative is working from your living room, co-working spaces surround you with a network of professionals and can reduce the isolation sometimes associated with working from home.
- Access to shared and private spaces
In terms of design, co-working spaces are much more than your standard office: There are no cubicles here. Between expansive lounges, convenient hot desks, glass-walled private offices, and write-on-the-wall conference rooms, there’s plenty of space for collaboration when teams get together. Privacy and heads-down productivity is possible, too, with bookable meeting rooms and sleek private offices.
- Enhanced productivity
From the morning meeting flurry to the 3 p.m. slump, your focus and energy levels fluctuate during the workday—and your workspace should accommodate this. Typically, co-working spaces blend a range of work environments to cater to different work styles. Offering greater variety than a traditional office, yet greater structure compared with working from home, co-working spaces are optimized for productivity. Progress comes easy in intentionally designed spaces, while intangibles like background music, natural light, and moderated air temperatures keep you energized and refreshed.
- Breaking out of your comfort zone
If you’re not used to open, buzzing office plans or the social aspect of coworking, the ever-changing work environment can be challenging at first. But by breaking out of your comfort zone, meeting new people, and working in different settings each day, you’re required to stay innovative and creative in the face of uncertainty—traits similar to those needed in growing a startup.
- Flexibility and cost savings
Whether you’re a freelancer looking for a drop-in space, or an established team seeking a dedicated desk or private office, coworking solutions allow you to pay for only the space you need.