Managing a coworking space takes knowledge of the best practice as well as a lot of effort. This article will give you some guidance on getting started with coworking spaces, whether you manage one or think about renting a place(s) for your team.
In this article:
- What is a coworking space?
- What to keep in mind when managing a coworking space
- What you need to consider as managing a coworking space
- How to manage a coworking space?
- The benefits for teams
- The benefits for individuals
- Further Reading
What is a coworking space?
We’ll start off with some easy definitions. A coworking space is a shared office that provides the opportunity for people who work in isolation (sometimes called digital nomads) or in small teams to come together in one physical office, share ideas and collaborate with each other. The core difference between working in your home office and working in a co-working space is that in the latter you can meet new people, be around like-minded individuals and easily bounce ideas off of each other, all of which contributes to your productivity. You also get bottom-line benefits of shared resources, such as printers/scanners and sometimes even a kitchen and lounge area.
What to keep in mind when managing a coworking space
Now that we’ve got the basics out of the way, what should you consider before managing your own space? Here are some pointers.
You need to be involved with your community and the people coming into the space. This is important for two reasons. Firstly, it will help you maintain a certain level of activity which helps attract new members. Secondly, it will give you an insight into how other individuals are working, their work habits, how often they come by, and many more insights which can help you optimize the productivity of not only yourself but also others around you.
You should make sure that this space is safe and secure. Enough surveillance and overall security are necessary if you want your guests to leave their equipment there and make the place their long-term work station.
What you need to consider as managing a coworking space
One of the important things you need to consider is what type of people will sign up for such a service. There are some obvious factors like their location (city), age (millennials vs baby-boomers) and gender (more females tend to use these spaces than males do) that should play into how you fill out the rest of the membership, this includes other things like preferred hours, daily routine and cost of the memberships. Some spaces also require a certain level of education or specific skills from their members, but this is usually not the case.
How to manage a coworking space?
Now that you’ve decided to manage, here are some things you can do to succeed.
Partner up with other local businesses
You might be able to get your coworking space started by partnering up with another business in town that’s already established and respected. This will make managing your coworking space much easier because you’ll have someone else managing the finances or similar, while at the same time offering more for your customers due to them already having a presence on the market.
It is important that people know about your new business so you need to market aggressively. There are a number of ways in which you can do this, one of them being word-of-mouth marketing. This is done by building a community within your coworking environment that will share their experiences with other people around the world and then tell their friends about it. Another way to market is through social media sites. These days every business uses these platforms to reach out to new clients.
Promote productivity with events
What makes managing this business different from managing any other kind of business, is the fact that most people come here to work and there is nothing more frustrating than having unwanted noise when all you want to do is get some work done. This is why managing this space requires a certain amount of discretion and where events come into play. For example, you can hold group meditation sessions every day before work starts, host weekly trivia nights or even have your employees give motivational talks.
Incentivize people to follow rules
One of the problems that managers could face is that some members might not be following the rules. Since you will probably make a list of these rules, it would be best if you incentivized people to follow them by offering discounts to those who stay out late.
The benefits for teams
In today’s work environment, coworking spaces give you the best of both worlds and allow you to adopt a hybrid working model much better. Coworking spaces are a great place for teams to work together because it gives them certain flexibility and freedom, while also promoting productivity. This is because team members can choose to work anywhere they want as long as it’s within the coworking area itself. This gives them certain flexibility and reduces distractions since all other team members are working too.
In addition to that, it allows teams to brainstorm better due to having access to other people’s ideas from their different walks of life, which can help with the creative process. This is why it is so beneficial for teams as well as their clients because it promotes growth and better ideas.
The benefits for individuals
One of the many benefits managing a coworking space gives to those who use it, is the fact that people from anywhere around the world can now team up and work on a project together. It used to be a lot harder for teams to do this since they would sometimes need certain equipment or assistance from professionals in different fields. Nowadays managing this space makes it possible for teams to work on their project 24/7, no matter where they are, as long as they have internet access.
How managing a coworking space helps individuals?
This space allows people to work from anywhere they want even if they don’t have an office of their own. This gives individuals a sense of freedom and helps them be more productive because they can choose when, where and how long they work. This is why managing a coworking space is beneficial for individuals as well as businesses since it makes employees happier and in turn, more productive.