The explosion of coworking may finally spell the end of the traditional office. And about time, too.
When we were started (in 1996), the founders lived 250 miles apart in London and Yorkshire so we were born as remote workers! This presented huge challenges, at the time technology struggled to provide answers.
So we created our own solutions to the problems – some were fantastic, some less so. As we grew, the technical heart of the business expanded in Yorkshire so we leaned towards being office-based for a while. But only leaned, and only for a short while.
We still extensively worked remotely from any office, using any and all spaces we could find. But it wasn’t until 2005 that the first official coworking space appeared (in San Francisco); it closed a year and later and replaced by the Hat Factory!
However, the writing was on the wall, most large corporations were rushing to embrace flexible working, and the rise of cloud computing was enabling remote and co-working in ways that seemed impossible a decade earlier.
By 2007, the term “coworking” is first seen as a trend in Google’s database and by the end of the noughties coworking spaces were popping up everywhere. It’s estimated that over 100,000 people now work in co-working spaces, so it’s still in it’s infancy but projected to double in size.
What Is Coworking?
A method of work that involves a common working environment, typically an office-building, but where activity is independent. Unlike a traditional office, those in a coworking environment aren’t usually employed by the same company.
We love the principle of co-working, secretly we’ve been co-working for 2 decades, we just didn’t call it that. Everything we do is built around our co-working structure and culture – it absolutely defines us, and differentiates us from every other digital agency in the UK.
The flexibility of co-working does, however, bring with it a set of unofficial “rules of engagement”, and here are a few tips to get your started, followed by a (cheesy looking) infographic from MBACentral.org
- Choose your space carefully.
- Cultivate relationships with others in the space.
- Respect the shared spaces.
- Work in the cloud.
- Ask for help and advice from others in the space, even if they’re not experts in your field.
- Stay focused (invest in a good pair of headphones to help with that).
- Always bring all chargers, cables and connectors you might need.