Thriving In Smaller Markets
By 2030, flexible coworking spaces will grow to become 30% of all office stock according to a report done by a commercial real estate firm JLL. With the increased popularity, coworking spaces will have to work hard to compete against other spaces in the area. Here are the top five things that people want in a coworking space.
Choosing the right location is the first step in building a coworking community. You have to consider how accessible the coworking space is, especially if your members are going to use it as their home office. Consider what might be important, including transit lines, parking, good restaurants or coffee shops, and more.
Whether potential members will decide to choose you over other coworking spaces are the amenities that you can offer. Make sure that your internet connectivity is as fast and secure as possible, or perhaps choose to go with two internet connections from independent ISPs. That way, if something does go wrong with one, there will be a backup.
You can also consider providing:
· Kitchen and snacks
· After hour access using a cloud remote access control system
· Meeting rooms that can be rented
· Printing and faxing
· Mailing and handling
There are other niche markets you can consider targeting, depending on the needs of your community. Perhaps you want to create a women-only space, an LGBTQ friendly space, or offer childcare.
The reason more people are straying away from the traditional workplace environment is that it just isn’t as comfortable or productive to work in as a coworking space. And working from home is often too distracting and it becomes difficult to separate work life from home life. The benefits of coworking spaces are the fun exterior that helps to promote productivity and allow you to sit in a comfortable chair, sofa, or desk depending on your desires that day.
One of the main issues with coworking spaces is they don’t utilize the community and neighborhood around them that they do have. As a coworking owner or manager, it should be your main focus to utilize the location and its surroundings to build up the community. Consider partnering with local yoga studios and have them come in once a week for a yoga class, or bring in business leaders to lead a networking session. Your members might be interested in monthly happy hours, workshops, presentations, or even art openings. An environment that encourages people to network is one of the main benefits of working in a coworking space.
Many people join a coworking space when they are just starting their business and just have a few members. Consider what type and levels of memberships you have that can appeal to a large number of people, no matter what stage of business they are in currently.
Coworking space challenges can sometimes pose a problem. Therefore, you should plan out how you want to utilize the space, including how many desks, offices, meeting rooms, and common areas you want. You also might consider offering your members meeting rooms so they can easily meet with potential clients. You might even consider offering a handful of free meeting room hours in your membership to make it as easy as possible for your members to use.
Save your community manager 41 hours each week—learn how The Yard did it with cloud-based access control.Read the Case Study