My work as a freelance digital marketing consultant takes me to multiple client offices. And the idea for this post came while I was at one such office.
This company, a start-up, decided to base themselves out of a co-working office, rather than rent their own office space. And they are not alone – I know of a few other organisations who have decided that they would rather work out of co-working spaces.
The attraction of such an arrangement is fairly obvious – excellent work spaces with multiple break-out areas where individuals, small teams can work out of, the usual office amenities such as meeting rooms, snack and coffee facilities, lounge areas, etc. Most importantly, the management team is not burdened with the administrative overheads of facilities management. And this itself outweighs the slightly higher costs of such an arrangement.
As a worker in one such space, I find the environment quite stimulating. While you are definitely part of one organisation, you feel yourself part of the larger ecosystem based around the space. The flexibility to work anywhere within the premises (or in another premise of the same co-living space) is so liberating, especially for people of an older generation who have worked in organisations where you are literally tied to a specific desk (along with a land-line phone :-)). In fact, the desks at this particular space do not have a land-line phone, or even provisions for one! Also, no computers and very few monitors on desks give it a very clean, minimalist air. Everyone has laptops (typically sleek Macbooks), smart phones and communication is primarily via services such as Slack (and Google Hangouts for conference calls).
If this is the future of offices, bring it on!