The workplace as we knew it ten, or even five years ago has changed. Instead of the number of square meters directly correlating to your company’s perceived success, startups and businesses are recognising the advantages to thinking lean and thinking social. Coworking is becoming a familiar sight all over London and the UK, and with big names like Regus vying for a piece of the action, I think it’s safe to say coworking is here to stay. In May alone, the term ‘coworking’ has been mentioned over fifteen thousand times on Twitter. So why is it so popular?
Any business decision needs to be cost effective and startups need to be lean. Coworking spaces offer businesses space to work at more affordable rates. Whilst you can can opt for a traditional desk or office set up, coworking also allows members to hotdesk at home clubs and in many cases at other clubs within the group. Membership costs will often also include use of meeting rooms and printing costs, though always check!
The joy of coworking is that you never know who you’re going to meet, whilst you’ll get used to seeing the regulars and people with full time desks, there’s also the people looking to hot desk when travelling or in the area for meetings. In a coworking space you have a plethora of people with different skill sets and expertise that are normally only to happy to talk through ideas or problems.
If it isn’t ideas you’re after, maybe it’s the beer. We’re social creatures by nature, and whilst the idea of ‘networking’ may feel many with fear, free beer and pizza has a different effect! Socials and get togethers not only break the ice and help you get to know your fellow coworkers, but it can also boost your productivity and promote happy working relationships to others in the same environment. Keep your eye out for the events at your local clubs, it’s a great way to meet new people or take a break from work for a quick chat and some much needed sustenance.
There are some fantastically designed coworking spaces. Central Working Paddington, even won an award for their space. Cheaper rates and sharing space doesn’t mean that you will forgoing the little extras or end up sitting at a wobbly desk all day. Many spaces offer fantastic meeting spaces and break out areas that you’d happily invite clients to.
To add to the positives, many coworking spaces are either conveniently located near a coffee shop or have one onsite.
There are so many great coworking spaces around the UK, offering a range of memberships to suit your schedule and budget, whether you want a one-off hotdesk, or monthly paid daily access.
Adam Blaskey, Founder and CEO of The Clubhouse commented on the trend he has noted: “A trend which we can already see here at The Clubhouse is an increase in blue chip members. Yes, we have entrepreneurs and early-stage businesses, which gives The Clubhouse a high energy atmosphere, but the vast majority of our members are medium-sized enterprises and large corporations located close by, even around the corner, who need somewhere executives can escape to when they really need to focus on a project or require overflow meeting space.
“What these people need is a place where productivity is proven to reach peak levels. We offer a range of private meeting rooms; open-plan co-working for quiet concentrated effort; lounges and flexible meeting areas for hosting important clients; wi-fi is ultra-fast and unlimited; coffee is free; newspapers are available; and there’s a dedicated team supporting all of our members’ business needs.”