Co-working spaces are becoming ever more popular, especially for newer, smaller businesses that are still establishing themselves. The thing is, however, that not all co-working spaces are the same. As a business owner, you need to choose the one that is right for your company. How do you do that? That is exactly the question this blog is designed to answer.
Start by Defining Your Needs
Answer a few questions for yourself before you get started. For instance:
- What do you need this space for?
- What do you hope to gain from it?
- What are the key features that you need in the space (both the essentials and those you can do without, but would like nevertheless)?
Knowing what you need will help you narrow the search. For example, your essentials might be Wi-Fi, a printer and meeting rooms. A receptionist may or may not be important to you, and you’ll have to think about how much you really need free coffee!
Make Sure the Culture Matches Yours
When you are considering a co-working space, you need to look further than just the available amenities. You need to be sure that not only the space, but also its other occupants are a match for you. Find a space that suits the culture of your company. This means that you will have to research the other companies in the space, maybe even go and talk to them. You are joining a community after all, and you need to make sure that it will be a good fit for you.
Always Take a Tour
This should be obvious, but it’s worth emphasizing. Go and visit all prospective co-working spaces and take a tour of the facility. Maybe you could even test the space out for a day or two if the owners/managers allow that. While you’re looking at the facilities, also consider the location of the space to ensure that it will be good for your business. The following are some factors to consider:
- Where is it relative to your clients?
- Will they have easy access to you?
- What about your suppliers?
- Are there sufficient transport facilities for your staff?
Make Sure That Co-Working Is Really for You
How long will a co-working space serve you? Where is your company in terms of its journey at the moment? A co-working space is an excellent bridging arrangement between a home office and a traditional one. On the other hand, it may suit you to stay in a co-working office in the long-term. Think carefully about your future plans, and then decide whether a co-working office will suit you and for how long. Make sure that your long-term plans can be accommodated by the office’s policies.
Jason Scholtz is the CEO of Envision Investments, and a leader in the property and strategic investment industry in South Africa. He is the founder of LiquidHub, a growing chain of shared workspaces set to revolutionise the way South Africans handle their workdays. For more tips and an insider’s look into the South African business environment, be sure to get in touch, keep an eye on this blog or visit http://www.envisioninvestments.co.za/.