Coworking space for small business owners, remote workers, early start-ups, and freelancers offer countless benefits. Professionals who opt to work in these shared spaces that are also known as "business incubators," thrive well in them. Instead of working alone from home, small business owners can go to an actual office and work in a professional setting. Coworking space also offers these individuals a chance to network with other entrepreneurs. It's a win-win situation.
Coworking space also serves a business model that companies are borrowing for their employees.
The Business Harvard Review published a report that evaluated why people thrive in a coworking space. In the article, it states that people who belong to these communities report levels of thriving that rank 6 on a 7-point scale. Based on research, this is at least a point higher than the average employees who perform their jobs in regular office settings.
Coworking space is all about a diverse group of independent professionals working together in a shared, communal setting. Some of the spaces come complete with offices to rent, conference rooms, office amenities, and video/audio equipment needed for meetings.
Within the report, it was revealed that coworking spaces give members a sense that their work is more meaningful. Since everyone is working on different projects, ventures, or services, direct competition is removed from the equation. Office politics are put aside and people feel less pressure to put on a certain facade in the workspace. In fact, people in these situations have a "stronger identity" with their own work because they feel that their skill sets are more distinctive and interesting; they bring a uniqueness to the table.
Moreover, community members can help each other out with their expertise in other chosen fields. This is where networking comes into the picture.
Job control is another factor in the morale benefits of people joining a coworking space. They can work any hours they want -- 24/7 in most cases. They can go to lunch or the gym whenever it suits them and there's no repercussions -- as there would be in an actual employee office setting.
Additionally, people can choose to work either alone or in a more collaborative way with shared desks while interacting with other workers.
Business professionals in this setting are better able to build structure in their day. It helps to have a solid routine and business incubators do just this as it assists in providing a measure of discipline that's more motivating for them.
Social interaction is done at each individual's discretion. Even when people in coworking spaces are working independently and not actively seeking conversation, there's a sense of reassurance just knowing that other community members are there for whenever they desire to reach out.
Interestingly enough, the "coworking movement" is fast becoming a strategy for companies. It's being incorporated in two ways for their employees.
First, it's meant to allow employees an alternative place to work. This is especially true for distributed employees who need a productive work environment. It's also ideal for employees who demand flexible workspace and time. Grind, for example, reveals that employees from nationally recognized companies have used its coworker space.
"We haven't had to reach out to larger organizations, they actually tend to just come to us," says Grind marketing manager, Anthony Marinos. "We've had employees from Visa, journalists from the Chicago Tribune, and even people affiliated with large financial institutions all work out of Grind."
Coworking spaces are proving to be a positive alternative for self-employed business professionals and traditional employees to flourish in. Studies are showing increased productivity, networking, and sustainability. It allows people to work and still be their authentic selves while forging an environment of desirable energy in the process of spawning new ideas.
[Photo Credit: Wynd, the Co-working Space in LKF Facebook]