How Coworking is Changing the 21st Century Workplace
Freelancers and small businesses are increasingly proving themselves 21st Century economic powerhouses. Their small sizes allow them to flow with the currents of technological and cultural change in a way their larger, corporate counterparts can’t. They are cost-effective because they can keep a small core staff, bringing on specialists depending on their needs.
But where do they work? Many find themselves too big or busy to work from home, or too small to afford their own office.
For these homeless freelancers, small businesses and entrepreneurs, co-working spaces provide a great option. Individuals and small organizations can rent a desk or small office in a space filled with like-minded industries. Tenants share things like boardrooms, printers and other resources. Rent depends on your use of the space, e.g. NYC-based Green Spaces charges anywhere from $20/day to $550/month for a dedicated desk.
Because most are formed based on industry–e.g. there might be a tech, non-profit or ethical business co-working space–the environments foster community formation and collaboration. Many host events with dedicated spaces like this one in Zurich.
One of the best known co-working spaces is The Hub, whose mission is, “To become a global network of connected communities that enable collaborative ventures for a better world.” Formed in 2005 in London, they now have 25+ locations, 4K+ members, 50+hubs in formation, spread across 5 continents.
Coworking is a great form of edited workplace for a number of reasons:
- If you travel a lot, you can pay and use the space only when you need it, cutting overhead and overall space use.
- Shared office equipment cuts clutter and saves money.
- Human interaction promotes happiness.
If you’re interested in finding a coworking space in your area, visit the coworking wiki directory, which contains a list of spaces around the world.
images via Hub Westminster and Hub Zurich.