What is Co-Working all about?
What is Co-Working all about? Co-Working is a style of work that involves a shared working environment, sometimes an office, yet independent activity. Unlike in a typical office environment, those coworking are usually not employed by the same organization. Typically it is attractive to work at home professionals, independent contractors, or people who travel frequently who end up working in relative isolation. Coworking is the social gathering of a group of people, who are still working independently, but who share values and who are interested in the synergy that can happen from working with talented people in the same space.
The Co-Working idea is simple: independent professionals and those with workplace flexibility work better together than they do alone. Coworking answers the question that so many face when working from home: “Why isn’t this as fun as I thought it would be?” Beyond just creating better places to work, coworking spaces are built around the idea of community-building and sustainability. Coworking spaces agree to uphold the values set forth by the movement’s founders: collaboration, community, sustainability, openness, and accessibility. Read all about it on this wiki or via the Coworking Google Group.
Some coworking spaces were developed by nomadic internet entrepreneurs seeking an alternative to working in coffeeshops and cafes, or to isolation in independent or home offices. A 2007 survey showed that many employees worry about feeling isolated and losing human interaction if they were to telecommute. Roughly a third of both private and public-sector workers also reported that they didn’t want to stay at home during work. Co-Working offers a solution to the problem of isolation that many freelancers experience while working at home, while at the same time letting them escape the distractions of home. Many misconceptions abound about what Co-Working encompasses and how it distinguishes itself from business accelerators, business incubators and executive suites. These types of spaces do not seem to fit into the Co-Working model because they often miss the social, collaborative, and informal aspects of the process, with management practices closer to that of a Cooperative, including a focus on community rather than profit. Many of the Co-Working participants are also participants in BarCamp and other related open source technology activities.
Coworking is not only about the physical space, but about establishing the Coworking community first. The benefits of Coworking can already be experienced outside of Coworking spaces, and it is recommended to start with building a Coworking community first before considering opening a Coworking space. However, some Coworking Spaces don’t build a community: they just get a part of an existing one by combining their opening with an event which attracts their target group. A lot of Co-Working communities are formed by organizing Casual Coworking events that can take place in private living rooms or in public places such as suitable cafes, galleries or multi-functional spaces. During these events Coworkers can experience the benefits of Co-Working and get to know each other which lowers the barriers to join a Coworking space later.
Check out few example of Co-Working Space down in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia:
- Fluent Space
- Paper + Toast
- Nook Co-Working Space
- Urban Village Co-Working Space
If Kuala Lumpur can do it? Why can’t Penang do it? Think it your self, if you want to know more about Co-Working Space in Penang, do come and join us on TE4P Nite, we will have the further discussion on Co-Working Space.