The coworking phenomenon has taken the world by storm, and for good reason – although its popularity might, at first glance, seem like a fad, the reason for its preference is rooted in deep psychological reasons. A host of coworking spaces have sought to disrupt crisis-ridden professional environments in order to set a qualitative standard by optimizing their work environments. As collaboration lies at the heart of coworking, these spaces are encouraging startups and seasoned entrepreneurs to work side by side. Let’s take a look at the reasons why coworking might be the future of work.
The reason behind innovative collaboration can be attributed to the psychology of performance – as coworking is slowly transforming into a full-fledged, robust movement, more office spaces are working towards novelty measures that are emblematic of state-of-the-art innovation. It is important to keep in mind that while these spaces encourage interpersonal relationships that hinge upon collaboration and mentorship, there is no element of forced socialization. Coworking keeps in mind the plight of the socially anxious, the naturally introvert, the shy, yet, meticulous professional – one can be as friendly or reserved as they wish to, while working together towards a common, achievable goal.
Moreover, researchers who hold expertise in the realm of coworking have dissected the reasons for its effectiveness:
Coworking Fulfills Two Basic Human Needs:
A research team at the University of Michigan, led by business professor, Dr. Gretchen Spreitzer, has spent the last four years studying the nuances involved in coworking. As a result, they have interviewed the founders of a wide array of coworking companies and surveyed 200+ professionals. This helped uncover two primary benefits of the coworking experience, which have been linked to quality employee performance:
- A certain sense of flexibility in terms of ideas and creative innovation
- A simultaneous sense of autonomy, minus interference with community values
As per this research, the peripheral offerings of coworking assumes less importance in comparison with its social structure, wherein professional can savour a sense of individual autonomy that is intrinsically linked to a genuine sense of collaboration. Hence, most shared office spaces tend to strike a nuanced balance between these two needs – bridging the gap in an effective manner. Coworking professionals also enjoy a certain amount of freedom in the form of 24×7 access, endless amenities, and work-mode flexibility. They can choose their environment as per their preferences, which in turn, affects their performance and productivity in significant ways.
Coworking Minimizes Internal Competition
While autonomy and flexibility are key factors, work environment is crucial for all-round professional development. Coworking helps grant a sense of community, wherein people are free to be their individual selves, as there is no serious competition between the members themselves. Being a part of a community, the collective conscious triumphs while keeping individuality intact. This helps facilitate the onset and implementation of diverse ideas that benefit the organization as a whole in the long run.
Hence, while the coworking trend might appear hyped at times, it is important to realize that it is not a trend at all – but a soon-to-be norm which shall become the future of work. Scientifically-sound and socially-inclusive, coworking allows a wide range of individuals to work – alone, and together.