One of the most propitious resources available to entrepreneurs and small businesses these days is shared offices and co-working work spaces. A shared work space is a collated work environment where people connect, work, share ideas, network. These spaces bring together start-ups, freelances, professionals and entrepreneurs from many different backgrounds, cultures and areas of expertise.
With all of the work spaces options out there, it can be a daunting decision to choose and to know which one is right for you. Questions that come to one’s mind are: What kind of people & companies work out of that co-working? Does it indulge to a specific industry or is it industry-agnostic? Is there any gender balance, age-balance? What kind of people would you like to surround yourself with? Not all spaces are created unbiased, and here are few tips to consider when choosing the right shared work space for you and your business.
Choose your space cautiously
• With a choice of shared work spaces, it is worth looking at more than just the amenities & the facilities that the space offers.
• Check out the current mix of members, and see what kind of and frequency of social events and activities the space offers.
• Choosing a shared work space with people from different industries give new perspectives.
• Look for multiple work formats that offer enough space which allows your company to grow and gives you complete flexibility without long term commitments
• Where is the co-working space located? Is it near public transportation, or are parking options available? Also, is it in a location that your clients can get to easily?
• Is the area considered a premium location?
• Make an effort to choose a shared work space that benefit your business and improves your productivity.
• Most importantly, is it safe for your employees, especially women? This plays an important role while recruiting employees
Focus on community, than space
• A good shared work space engages with its members and builds network and community for you. In simple terms, it is an ecosystem within an ecosystem.
• Some shared work spaces emphasize the community aspect of co-working more than others, and this can be a detriment and also a benefit so depends on what your objectives are. Community takes curiosity, cultivations and consideration.
• Make an effort to patronize the co-working space, so choose wisely.
Know what you like
• Majority of the work spaces host events such as business meet-ups, software works hops, panel discussion etc,.
• Question yourself if networking is a priority for you. If it is, then find a space that hosts events you would be interested in.
• One of the considerable advantages in opting for a shared work space is the low capital upfront – low deposits make it very attractive
• Many spaces offer short-term, or month-month lease so that businesses can save money and keep overhead low. Look out for added benefits like how frequently you get access to use the conference rooms.
• Check the amenities such as WiFi, printers, tea/coffee, courier and mail services the space offer.
• Any shared work space you join will have people mingling and engaging in conversation resulting in noise. Noise becomes an issue when it starts distracting you from getting tour work done. This is where a space’s design plays a huge factor in promoting productivity and privacy.
• See if the work space has private phone booths. This may help to minimize distractions so that you can get your work done.
• At the end, you should be looking for a healthy balance of people, where the space facilitates networking while maximizing productivity.
• Almost all co-working offices or shared work spaces offer free trails, where potential members can utilize the space for at least a day and see whether or not it would be a good fit.
• Be sure to take advantage of this, and ensure that you are joining the right shared work space.
Shared offices and co-working spaces bring together people with different back grounds, approaches and thoughts. This may help provide a platform to entrepreneurs to develop more creative, potent ideas and solutions. Hope that the above tips will help you out while filtering out the right shared work space for you.
Space Whiz is an online portal of work spaces like commercial offices, co-working spaces, private cabins, conference rooms and training rooms. The company's mission is to accelerate the new sharing economy & make managed offices available to the growing community of Entrepreneurs, Professionals and Start-ups for the purpose of renting/leasing at an affordable price and multiple locations options.This author has published 15 articles so far.