Co-working spaces — all play and no work?
Our team day at Factory, Berlin.
Co-working space? Check
Freshly brewed coffee? Tasty
Perfect! You are now a fully-fledged startup ready to take over the world.
It seems everyone from your granny 👵 to your old high school friend 👩🎓 are working from a co-working or community space. A quick search on Twitter will show you tweets of multiple co-working places located in every corner of the world. But are these co-working and community spaces all just hype and actually harmful to your productivity and results?
Here at CodeControl, we decided to try it ourselves and moved our offices to Factory, in Berlin for a day. The famed Factory community space is located in the former offices of Twitter and the building is also home to SoundCloud.
Here was our take on co-working spaces as a team:
Distraction is everywhere, but so are networking opportunities. 😎
Our team arrived early in the morning ready for a day of productivity. Within half an hour of being in the co-working space we were feeling more distracted than usual. There were fussball tables, ping pong tables and a constant stream of people walking by our area, wanting to talk.
Don’t get us wrong — networking is important for any business — but there is a time and place for it. With this constant flow of people it can be difficult to get your work started. It requires a new level of discipline to ignore the new distractions surrounding you.
Our team agreed that before heading to a co-working space, you should ask yourself — what are you looking to achieve that day? Are you looking for somewhere to socialise and network or are you looking for a day of intense productivity? Depending on your answer it could be more beneficial to stay at your home office or find a nice coffice (yes, that’s a cafe used as an office).
The noise volume can be high but that’s why headphones were invented! 🎧🎵
When working from an office you control the amount of noise you make and the amount of noise in your surroundings. You can work in sync with your team and there’s an understanding of when to have a team discussion and when silence is needed.
In a co-working space you lose this control. You have new people sitting beside you, chit chatting or talking on the phone. This makes it harder to find the silence needed for focusing on tasks. But fear not, this problem can be easily resolved by plugging in your earphones or finding a quieter area. So find that perfect playlist and soon you’ll be in your own world!
For some people, they need complete silence while working and others could work from a airport! So ask yourself if you’re comfortable with the buzz that comes with a co-working space or whether you need complete silence.
Privacy is hard to find, but collaboration can be more fun! 🏓☕😀
Working from the co-working space changed the dynamic of our team and interactions. We no longer had the privacy of our office and were more aware of our conversations. If you want to have private conversations you need to find a quieter area or conference room. Luckily, the majority of co-working space offer these conference rooms and phone booths allowing teams some private space.
While co-working spaces might reduce privacy, they do offer unique ways for collaboration. The fussball tables ⚽ and ping-pong tables 🏓 bring a new way of figuring out problems and add a touch of fun to collaboration.
Who knew solving problems over a fussball match could be so productive. 😂
Our team’s final thoughts on co-working spaces: 👩💻
Co-working spaces are great places for meeting like-minded people and growing your network. They offer great facilities for remote workers and create a good sense of community. However, the relaxed and social environment lends itself more to certain types of work than others. So before booking yourself into a co-working space be aware of what type of environment you want and need.
Our advice, is to try out different co-working spaces and see what works for you. Maybe you’ll meet your next hire over a game of ping pong or fussball!
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Thanks for reading! This article was written by Emily O’Connor, who escaped from the Emerald Isle of Ireland to join CodeControl’s digital marketing team in Berlin. She’s interested in AR and VR in advertising and also how technology will impact the future of work.
This article was originally published on our blog.
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