If you oversee a coworking space, then you know your members enjoy many benefits that extend well beyond the amenities you provide, such as free WiFi and coffee. One benefit that many members probably appreciate is an improved life/work balance than working from home or in a traditional workspace normally provides. Another meaningful benefit that many members enjoy is the opportunity to collaborate with others.
Working with others in a coworking space is different from collaborating in a conventional office. That’s because facilities like our Atlanta coworking spaces often bring together professionals from a wide array of industries. From artists to website developers, entrepreneurs and many more, you’ll find professionals who have very different skills at a typical coworking space.
While you may initially think that people who work in such disparate fields won’t have much in common in a professional sense, that’s simply not the case. In fact, it’s this wide range of different backgrounds that normally makes collaborating in a coworking space even more beneficial and fruitful than it might be in a traditional workspace.
How to Foster Collaboration
While coworking spaces often present great opportunities for collaboration across industries, people working together doesn’t always happen on its own. That’s where the manager of a coworking space can step in and do some things that will foster collaboration between the facility’s members.
Here are a few things you can do to promote collaboration in your coworking space:
Redo Your Physical Layout
If your coworking space consists of individual offices that are separated by physical barriers, you may want to reconsider your layout. Ideally, your layout won’t separate your coworking space’s members into individual offices exclusively. While you may want to have some private offices, you should incorporate them with open areas.
Having a combination of private offices, open spaces and common areas will help foster collaboration at your facility. While people can retreat into a private office when they want to, they can interact and work with others in your open and common areas at will as well. In other words, a “blended” layout will give your members the best of both worlds.
Host Professional Events
In addition to revising your layout if necessary, you should plan some professional events at your coworking space. You can schedule seminars that will teach your members about a topic that can help them be even more successful. You can plan presentations that will identify industry trends or discuss other pertinent topics. The key is to determine what interests your members and host professional events that will appeal to them.
Schedule Community Events
While your members may be serious professionals at the height of their careers, they still need to have some fun and blow off steam at least once in awhile. You should schedule community events where your members can interact socially to promote collaboration in your coworking space.
From happy hours to holiday celebrations, cooking classes, fundraisers, outdoor adventures in a nearby park and more, there are plenty of community events you can plan for your members. This kind of event enables your members to get to know one another better, which can help them feel more confident about collaborating with each other.
Collaboration is king at SharedSpace. Learn about the active community of collaborators at our Atlanta, GA coworking spaces now.