Are co-working and team working basically the same thing? In a lot of ways, yes, but in many ways, they are very different too. Basically, we are talking about working together, with other people, to either brainstorm ideas for an individual project, or to pull together to complete a project together.
In a regular environment, there are many advantages to co-working/team working, such as:
- Deadlines are met
- A happy, collaborative environment is established
- Staff feel supported by co-workers/team members
- There is less stress associated with this type of work
- The organisation benefits from a collaborative working approach, which pulls together the best of everyone in the team
Basically, there aren’t many downsides to co-working, or working as part of a team. You do need to create the right collaborative set-up for this type of work method to succeed, and that means look into your office design, and perhaps purchasing new office desks and desk chairs. A lay out which is specifically designed for co-working is very effective indeed, and often gets the best out of many different people.
Specific Co-working Spaces
We mentioned that co-working and team working are relatively the same thing, but they’re not totally the same thing. This is because co-working can be used to describe an individual working pattern, which is done in a place containing other people. To simplify that explanation, we need to talk about co-working spaces.
A good example of this is a freelance writer, or a digital nomad. A person such as this works for themselves, alone, but they need to collaborate with other outside people in order to gain inspiration, or to gain advice in their job. To this aim, co-working spaces are ideal. These are public spaces where such individuals can go, usually renting a workspace for a set amount of time, and they can then meet many other different people who work in the same way. Collaboration is therefore easy.
Another example when this type of situation may be used is when an individual works from home, but doesn’t want to be within their four walls all the time, e.g. for working and living. For that reason, co-working spaces are a great solution.
Despite those explanations, there is a lot of confusion around this type of co-working.
Co-working is Not Just For Youngsters
There is a myth that co-working is something that only the young and hip do. Not the case! Whilst co-working spaces are full of younger people, they are equally as full of over 30s and 40s too. Many people are understanding the benefits of this type of work, and that means those who have grown disillusioned with the regular 9-5 and have taken a work change.
There is No Peace and Quiet, or Privacy, When it Comes to Co-working
Not the case! Co-working spaces are full of likeminded people, people who need to work just as badly as you do. Everyone is relatively respectful and considerate of others, and there are also rules! If someone is found to be extremely disruptive, they will be ejected.
Many co-working spaces also have specific areas for quiet activities, such as meeting rooms with executive desk furniture, booths, and Skype or video call areas.
Co-working Spaces Aren’t For Companies
The reality is that co-working spaces aren’t full of freelancers and digital nomads. Yes, the majority of people in there will be working for themselves, but there are also many people who are working as part of a large company, and who work flexibly, and who work away from the office. Many large companies recognise that co-working spaces offer collaboration opportunities which a regular office can’t offer, and for that reason, they use co-working spaces quite commonly.
Large companies also regularly use co-working spaces to source out new creative talent too. So if you are working for yourself and using a co-working space, it’s possibly you’ll be head-hunted by a large organisation!
Co-working and Hot Desking Aren’t Just One And The Same
Many people are scared of the term ‘hot desking’, because it refers to a lack of ownership of a space. Many people also confuse hot desking and co-working as being the same thing, but they are far from this.
Co-working is about choosing your own working pattern and environment, collaborating with different people, and working to your own rules. Hot desking is not about this – hot desking is about working in an office environment within your organisation, and moving around from desk to desk according to whether there is space, or whether there is a need for in-house collaboration. Co-working offers much more freedom than hot desking does, and it is certainly not the same thing.
A Modern Way?
Co-working is truly the modern approach to work. As with anything new, there are misconceptions and myths which surround it, but as time goes on, the hope is that these will be shattered. The bottom line is that there are a huge amount of plus points towards co-working, and this collaborative, new way of working is something many large organisations are incorporating into the working lives of their employees.
Indeed, many companies are also setting up co-working spaces too, and if this is something your company would like to do, you need to do a lot of research into furniture placement, office design, and you need to shop around for the best London office furniture choices. In order to get the best out of a worker, you need them to be comfortable and inspired!
So, if co-working is something you’ve been thinking about, throw away the misconceptions, and look towards the reality of the situation. It’s truly the modern approach to work.
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