7 Characteristics of a Great Co-working Space
To some of you, co-working may be a new concept, but it is one of the most beneficial resources available to entrepreneurs these days. A co-work space is a shared work environment where people meet, work, network, share ideas and collaborate on projects, independent of a single office or business. They are great for freelancers, independent contractors, people who travel frequently, or just anyone interested in finding creative and contemporary places to work as they provide resources and inspiration.
I have seen firsthand how partnerships and friendships blossom in these spaces and eventually lead to great companies and business opportunities.
You do not need to take my word for it. The growing number of co-work spaces across the world provides good evidence of the popularity and effectiveness of collaborative spaces but I thought I would take the opportunity to share 7 must-haves of what makes co-working spaces great:
1. COMMUNITY AND CULTURE
Its important to find a space with a culture that you jive with and with a community of people who inspire you to do your best work. Co-working is not just a space to sit and work in, its a community of good people who do great work. The ability to share, lean on, review, learn from each other, grow and be part of an impactful community that enables growth is what it's all about. Our motto is community over competition. Just as they say with kids, it takes a village to raise them and it's the same concept with starting a business, it takes a city, a community to succeed out there.
2. A RELAXED, INVITING SPACE
The look and feel of a space is important. A co-working space should be designed with the worker firmly in mind: you’ll never have to fight over a plug socket, there is a water cooler, standing desks, magazines dotted around for inspiration, a kitchenette, comfy couches, cornered off nooks for privacy and some soft background music specifically chosen to help you zone in so you can crack on with your work with gusto. We try and provide a home away from home with some added structure so you can get your work done and switch off when you get home.
3. DAMN FINE COFFEE
This goes without saying. And not just any coffee, local roasters and artisan coffee provides members with a personalised experience. We stock Father Coffee's Signature Heirloom Coffee since we're all about supporting local in this community. So you get great coffee, without the distraction of being in a coffee shop environment.
4. LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
Is it easily accessible ? You will want a space that is convenient, safe, easy to find and close to home to avoid long commutes and traffic. Community Centre, situated on Jan Smuts Avenue which is one of the major arteries in the northern spheres of Johannesburg is so central and feeds a whole community of awesome neighbourhoods such as Craighall, Craighall Park, Hyde Park , Dunkeld West and Blairgowrie. Its nestled in the middle of a truly unique urban space.
5. COMFORT & AMENITIES
It's all about providing what you need to get through a day at the office. So co-working spaces should provide fibre wifi, desks, meeting space and lounge areas. On top of the basic offering, we provide a kitchenette (with microwave and fridge), printing and courier facilities, stationery for sale as well as virtual assistants. Its the whole package.
One must eat, right? Plenty of co-working spaces offer perks like foosball tables, uber eats and funky communal kitchen spaces. But at Community Centre, we are trying to appeal to people with a more tasteful benefit. We know how important food is so we have collaborated with Warm & Glad to provide our members with an affordable, delicious 'worker menu' that changes regularly to avoid boredom. To add to that, we have a tuck shop, yes, all the sweets, chips and sodas you need to help with those mid-afternoon cravings.
7. VIRTUAL ASSISTANTS
Have you ever felt like you need a PA just for a day? A Virtual Assistant (VA) provides administrative, technical, or creative (social) assistance to clients remotely . You pay for 100% productive work and can work with Virtual Assistants at any time. Perfect for individuals or small businesses but they can also support busy executives, mothers, freelancers etc. In essence they help make life less complicated and minimise multi-tasking so you can focus on what you do best! We offer VA rates where you pay for the workspace which includes your virtual assistant for the hour or day - it's awesome.
Collaborative spaces bring entrepreneurs and business professionals from many different industries, businesses and areas of expertise together. That's what it's all about.