The coworking trend continues to be on the rise - with Deskmag predicting over 1 million people will have used a coworking space by the end of the year. Working out of these spaces has been shown to improve productivity, but first you need to find the right space for you.
This will involve browsing different options online as well as then touring those spaces, which cuts away at the thing we all hold dear - time. So to help you along the way, here are some of our tips and tricks on choosing a coworking space speed-dating style, focusing on the aspects that would encourage you to stay long-term: location, layout, atmosphere, and perks.
Think about what is important to you. Is the space easily accessible by public transport? Is there parking available? Or if you’re lucky enough, is it walking distance from where you live?
You’re also most likely to want to have access to restaurants or even to gyms, so have a quick look around the area to see what options there are.
Another thing to consider is your proximity to your clients, or your potential clients. If you need to regularly schedule meetings or go on viewings, make sure the space you settle in is geographically close to those companies.
Examine the physical layout of the space itself and think about what type of environment you thrive in. Is it one with a open concept? Or is it a space that has different areas for you to work from.
Also take into note how far away the kitchen is from the working areas. These are typically the places where people chat about their weekends whilst reheating their packed lunches, so keep that in mind if this is something that might bother you.
These are the more abstract parts of a coworking space, the aspects that in the end will make you want to stay for the long-term. What’s the temperature of the space? Are there windows that let in a lot of natural light, or if it is on the basement floor is there plenty of lighting to counteract that?
A vital thing to consider is the community. These will be the people you spend the majority of your time around so you have to make sure you get along with them, or at the very least, can work around them.
Take note of the types of conversations they are having, as well as the volume of those conversations. Are they talking about the next big tech innovation or are they talking about the new organic food they bought for their dog? Ideally, you'd find people talking about both their personal and work lives, meaning they not only get a long but they feel comfortable enough to share information about what they're working on. In other words, you can expect both personal and professional growth from working out of the space.
If coffee or tea are a necessity for you, then check if they are freely available in the space, and if you're going to be drinking it everyday, it's worth tasting it. Otherwise, you’ll most likely find yourself leaving the space every time you need a caffeine top up. Also, If you’re someone who snacks often, check if there are any readily available.
Other things to look for, depending on your needs, are printing and scanning services, mail-collection service, outdoor space, in-house events, pet friendly, and child-care services.
The idea behind this speed-dating style of judging a space, is that you at least get an idea of what you can get out of the space. But of course, before fully committing to just one, ask for a trial day. This way you can make sure that the coworking space you do settle with is the perfect fit for you.
If you need a bit more help, don't hesitate to and we can help find the perfect coworking space for you around Southeast Asia!