Category Archives: Coworking Office Space

3 Tips to Help You Effectively Run Your Business from a Coworking Office

coworking office spaceBeing a business owner can get quite lonely. This is especially true if you offer remote services or freelance from your computer. Luckily, there are coworking offices that can allow you to get your work done while being around other people. These shared spaces can help you feel like you’re part of the community and keep you focused and productive.

Coworking offices are great for cutting back on the cost of rent while being able to interact day-to-day. These offices are excellent for startups and self-employed entrepreneurs–especially since they seem to attract a multitude of creative talent. They’re popular for numerous reasons like the versatility they offer.

If you decide to find the perfect coworking office, there are some things you’ll want to consider keeping yourself and those around you productive.

1.  Make Sure The Space Will Work for You Before You Commit

When shopping around and scoping out potential coworking office, make sure you find an environment that will work for you and your business. When you walk into a new space, it can overwhelm the sense, be sure to pay careful attention to:

  • Color: Is the office light, bright, and airy, or is it dim and cavelike? What works better for you? Most people prefer to work in light, bright offices. If you have your own space, you can ask if you can change the wall color to brighten things up.

Coloring and lighting can make you more or less productive. Make sure the lighting inspires you to work.

  • Size: Find out how many people will be working in the office and what the space is like when everyone is working diligently. Ask what peak hours are in the office. You can always schedule yourself before everyone gets in for the day or after everyone leaves.

Will you have enough space for everything you need? Many of us only use a laptop and a wireless mouse, but some people also need notebooks, files, and other bulkier items. Are you allocated enough room to work comfortably?

  • Storage: If you run an e-commerce site or have files to store, you’ll want to ask if the office space comes with secure storage, if you have to rent additional space in the office, or if you have to find storage elsewhere. This can be a deal breaker if you logistically need a bit more room.

 Internet Speed: If you run an online business or work as a freelancer, make sure your internet can keep up with your pace. This is another aspect you may want to try out before committing to renting space. Ask if you can come in for a trial then see is the internet is able to keep up.

  • Room to Grow Your Business: You may run a startup or simply be a self-employed writer, but you don’t know exactly what your business will look like in one year. If you need to bring another person into your business, will there be room for them, too? What if you need to increase inventory? Will the office space accommodate 100 more t-shirts?

2. Time Management is a Priority

While getting used a shared office can be excited, be sure to set aside time to tend to your business–especially when you first move into the office. When you first get into your new office, everyone will greet you with open arms and huge smiles. Make sure you’re just as friendly but establish time boundaries to keep you on track with everything you need to accomplish.

Try to keep regular hours. I don’t mean you need to work from 9 to 5, in fact, businesses often prosper when your hours a bit more untraditional. But you should establish a schedule and stay with it. It’s easy to miss out when you don’t have a definite in-time.

Keep a daily schedule or to-do list, too. If you need to update your website, that’s a priority if your income relies on it, make sure you have it written down so you don’t get distracted. If you’re just starting your business, register your domain name and spend time curating your e-commerce site and updating orders.

Always take the time at the end of your day to tidy up your area. This isn’t just courteous to your coworkers, but it will give you a clean slate for the next day. And factor breaks into your workday. Taking a quick break will reenergize you and help you be more productive in the long run.

3. Keep Sight of Your Goals and How to Accomplish Them

One of the best qualities of a coworking office is that everyone is there for a reason. Everyone is accomplishing goals and dreams. Let your coworkers’ ventures and successes inspire you and never lose sight of your goals.

Make your goals your priority. If you find yourself socializing too much, remind yourself that you’re at work to fulfill a goal, to make your business better and more profitable. You may want to hang a chalkboard, dry-erase board, or a calendar to help you keep track of your goals in the short term and long term.

Try to find a positive office with an inspiring group of people. Avoid negativity if it arises, it will drain your energy and your time.

Your business deserves a great workspace where your ideas and dreams can grow a flourish. Use these tips to help keep you on track for success if you’re searching or found great coworking offices. Keep your e-commerce site up-to-date and your freelance clients happy and you’ll be able to enjoy the productive environment of shared space.

If you need help finding the right coworking offices, contact us. It is what we do.

Moving Up: From Working at Home to Coworking

Helpful tips for coworking5 Tips to Make a Smooth Transition to Coworking

You were tired of working in a large office environment with a lot of unmotivated people and wanted to have the freedom of working at home. You stumbled upon the Y Combinator site and noticed a coding school called Lambda. You signed up, learned to code in 30 weeks and got some great clients. The only problem is that while you worked at home from your super cheap apartment near campus in, let’s say, Bloomington, Indiana, there were lots of distractions, and the fridge and TV were only a few feet away.

You also found that you were less able to separate working hours from leisure time, and you began to think about getting a spot in a coworking space. Following are five important things to consider as you make the change.

Check It Out

Just because someone says that XYZ coworking is a great spot to be, don’t make a rash decision, and be sure you carefully vet it and all of your options before you consider signing a lease. Always visit potential coworking areas during primetime–10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.–and be convinced that the vibe is what you are looking for.

If you make a lot of phone calls, your prospective space should afford the privacy you need; if you need to meet clients at your office, conference rooms should be available. If you need quiet, a rowdy coworking space obviously won’t suffice.

In short, the other inhabitants of your coworking area need to be compatible with your needs.

Internet

This should go without saying, and while well-established coworking concerns like WeWork undoubtedly have great connectivity, a smaller independent coworking space may not, so make sure first that outages very rarely occur, and that there is enough bandwidth for your needs. Also, Wi-Fi connectivity can be less robust than an old-school ethernet cable connection, so make sure that whatever it is that you are doing is well-supported by the signal you pay for.

Schedule

Discipline is needed to make the shared workspace experience successful. This may have been one of your working at home issues, and one great way to attack the problem is to get to work at the same time every day. That way, work time is separated from leisure time. Of course, it’s OK to try a flex-time schedule and make a self-imposed rule that you will work a certain number of hours each day after you arrive at the office. For example, if you want to do eight-hour days and you get to work at 11:00 a.m., you’ll have to stay until 9:00 p.m. that night.

Getting Along

When you take a college class, there is always an annoying student that talks incessantly, monopolizes conversations, takes up everyone’s time and is a general pain. Generally known as the class idiot, if you haven’t figured out who he or she is by the third week of school, it’s probably you! The same holds true for existing in a coworking environment. Respect your peers, don’t infringe on their time, don’t look over their shoulders at their screens, and save socializing for those Friday afternoon happy hours.

In the food department, just make sure you’re not the smelly food guy. That three-day-old tuna casserole that you really like may not have offended anyone while you were working at home, but you’re the odor of your lunch being nuked in the community microwave, may make you some enemies quite quickly.

Adapting to a Community Environment

If you have lived in an apartment or a single-family home your entire life and decide to move into a condo and purchase your first place, you are transitioning from a private to a community environment. In a condo complex or a high-rise, you have shared spaces, and your privacy may be limited to your interior area. Greenspace and parking facilities will have to be shared by others, and if you’re used to taking out the trash at 2:00 a.m. while in your pajamas, you may be surprised to meet another person in the elevator.

In a coworking space, you’ll have to share restrooms, and possibly office equipment. Yes, you won’t have to keep buying expensive ink cartridges for your printer, but there may be a line at peak times in front of the coworking space’s printer/scanner/fax, so you may have to be patient.

Other important things to consider while in your coworking environment are:

  • Don’t sign up for a shared workspace to mine for new clients. If you are identified early as a salesperson merely trolling for business, you will quickly be ignored by your coworkers.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you don’t know the snack protocol, or if you need private conference space on short notice, don’t hesitate to ask the staff or a co-tenant to help you out.
  • Be aware of the advantages that your space provides you with. Coworking areas many times contract with local vendors for discounts on things like food and office supplies plus perks like free deliveries on some items. Make sure you avail yourself of these valuable extras.
  • If your space uses an app like Slack, get on it so that you can get help if you need it. There may certainly be a designer in the space that can help you on a project and using a communication tool like Slack can be a great way to solve problems.

Remember, however, that coworking is not for everyone. You may find yourself annoyed by others that infringe upon your space, and you may also conclude that it’s hard to concentrate for various reasons like the number of people in the room, the noise level, or even harsh lighting. If this occurs, you could first try to find a different coworking space that better fits your needs. If not, the experience may have actually proven to you that working at home could succeed, and if you decide to try the process again at home, you may be more motivated to make it work.

If you need help in finding a coworking space, we can help. Let us know where you are looking by  Contacting us.

Coworking 101: The 5 Deadly Sins that will Zap Productivity in Coworking Spaces

Coworking spacesWorking at home really sounded like a great thing. No need to get dressed, no in-person meetings, you had your own private bathroom, and basically, you never had to physically interact with any other humans.

After a few stints in bureaucracy-heavy offices, you welcomed the opportunity to get away from it all. Perhaps, you’re a tech-savvy marketer located in Eugene, Oregon working remotely from your fairly priced apartment, things are looking great and much improved from your prior work situation.

The Mindset Shift

But then something happened.

While you enjoyed your work, you found that sometimes you felt like a hermit and you were worried that you were actually losing your ability to communicate with people since you left the house a lot less often.

You realized that although remote employment was what you wanted, you needed more of a semi-office environment, and coworking spaces seemed to be the right answer. Now you’re wondering what behaviors to stay away from in your new office space so that you will work efficiently, and equally important, get along with others.

Here are five things you should be aware of:

Picking the Wrong Space

Make sure you understand the vibe and ambience of of possible choice for coworking spaces and ensure that this determination is made during daily general working hours. Yes, we understand that coworking inhabitants may be at work at any time including weekends, but 1:00 p.m. on a week day would be a good time to check out a new space.

That way, you’ll get the feel of what happens there on a regular day. If you need a place to make private phone calls, make sure that your facility gives you that option. Likewise, if you need to meet clients, your coworking space should have some conference room availability.

Tech

You may want a wired connection for your laptop along with a strong Wi-Fi signal for your phone or pad. Sure, this should be a given, but until you plug in and logon, you can’t be sure that your space is going to provide optimal connectivity. There are no coworking space inspectors that test for adequate Internet signals, so you’ll have to do this yourself.

Discipline

We all wish we could just fire up an app and make money, but we’re talking about your career here. You already had a discipline problem while working at home. No, and it wasn’t your kid talking back to you. It was you watching daytime TV with a big bag of Cheetos when you should have been working. Even though you will be with others at your new workspace, you still have to treat work like work. Try to get there at the same time every day and establish a routine. While you may need to check email constantly as part of your business, you don’t need to follow politics every minute on CNN or Fox News. And while it’s fun to check your stocks every 15 minutes, that’s not conducive to getting anything done.

Smelly Food

You just don’t want to be the smelly food guy. It’s as simple as that. There’s nothing like the aroma of yesterday’s Subway tuna melt wafting throughout the entire area after you nuked it trying to bring it back to life. If you are the smelly food guy, don’t expect to make many new friends at work.

Conversely, it wouldn’t hurt to visit potential coworking spaces at lunchtime to make sure that there aren’t a lot of smelly food people there.

Be Careful on Fridays

Coworkers demand strong Internet signals, clean and modern workspace areas, clean restrooms, and free snacks and even free beer. Just don’t overdo the free snacks and beer part because even though you may be having a good old time every Friday afternoon during an extended happy hour, you may find that now you are only working 4 and a half days per week. If you watch some old movies, you’ll see how many business people seemed to regularly have a few martinis during lunch; bet they didn’t get much work done after that.

Working at home and renting a space at a coworking space are not that different. The same problems that can slow you down at home can reoccur at your new location if you aren’t personally disciplined. And one more thing, crowded downtown areas may lack parking, so if you are thinking of taking your car to work, make sure there is a place to put it.

Is Coworking Space really just an Executive Suite?

Coworking spaceThere is quite a bit of public confusion over the terminology used in the office space industry regarding executive suites and coworking space. Many still believe that an executive suite describes the suite of offices on or near the top floor of a skyscraper where the top executives of a company used to work; including only the president or chief executive officer, various vice presidents and their staff. In other words, only the top brass. While coworking space is a relatively new phenomenon and many do not understand what it is. Here is some information that will hopefully clear up the confusion.

Essentially, what they both are is shared serviced offices operated by a management firm that house multiple companies. They have different styles to accommodate different workplace goals. Coworking space has become an extension of the executive suite concept with a different spin. Originally coworking space was intended to serve like kinds of businesses that could work together while still being independent. They have morphed into offices with networking opportunities with other occupants. Here is another article on the idea “WeWork Is Basically Regus With A Paint Job.” WeWork is the largest Cowork provider and Regus the largest Exeutive Suite Provider.

The executive suite / coworking centers are an excellent option for small companies, branches or companies that need flexible lease lengths. Many firms, large and small, choose to operate their business or satellite offices from an executive suite.

Executive suites and coworking spaces are both essentially shared offices with services provided by a management firm. They are a great way for small or growing companies to get off to a fast and low-risk start and a great way for a fast-growing company to have the flexibility for rapid growth. Whether you choose to go with the more conventional executive suite style or the newer coworking trend with depending on the way you want to work.

Generally, executive suites cater to those companies looking for privacy in their workplace; Businesses or individuals who want to be in offices. Coworking space is more suited to those looking to create synergy and network with other companies or individuals located in the space.

They both offer features such as utilities and janitorial, receptionist, secretarial,  personalized telephone answering, mail handling and coffee and food service on-site. There are still a lot more of services that you can avail. They are very much customizable depending on your style, budget and needs.

In an Executive Suite or coworking office, your efforts can be dedicated entirely to your business, while the management company is responsible for typical office management. You will enjoy a professional reception and support personnel without the headaches of hiring, training and employee benefits; state-of-the-art business equipment without purchasing and maintenance problems, and; a staff attentive to both you and your client’s needs.

Executive Suites, along with coworking office space, allows you the added flexibility of short term or long term obligations – both from a planning and a financial statement point of view. Other benefits include:

  • Convenience – A small office near home or the people you do business with every day.
  • Cost – Attractive, professional office accommodations at roughly 30-50% of the
    cost of equipping and staffing conventional office space.
  • Flexibility –  Full or part-time accommodations are generally available (hourly, daily,
    weekly, monthly, annually).
  • No capital investment – There is no need to buy or lease office equipment or furniture. Private offices can be completely furnished as well.
  • Control of operating costs – Offer state-of-the-art business support services which are billed to clients.
  • Higher productivity  – By leaving the operation of your office to a staff of trained professionals, your company personnel can concentrate on managing and marketing your business.
  • Enhanced technology and services – Most Executive Suites / Coworking space provide enhanced Internet technology and first-class concierge handling of business needs.

If you are interested in estimating the cost of an executive suite or coworking space, give our executive suite calculator a try. It will compare your costs at an executive suite type space with that of a conventional office space.

If you are looking for an office, we’d love to help. It is what we do day in and day out. We not only find the right space for your business but also negotiate the deal with you to ensure no mistakes are made and that you get the best deal possible. Contact us for your no obligation meeting.

Creating A Great Workplace For A Multigenerational Workforce

Helpful tips for a great workplaceToday’s office workplace is rapidly changing. Work is becoming more of what we do and less of where we are. What can you do to create a great workplace for your company? Here are several ideas that can help you.

First off, one of the tools being used in this change is that of office hoteling. It is where those who do not need a full time desk space simply login and reserve a space when needed, resulting in savings of up to 40% in real office space costs.

As the office space workplace goes more and more mobile, with employees working wherever is convenient, it becomes necessary to recruit and retain the most motivated employees. If workers are not self-motivated, the system can easily be abused. Today’s younger workforce, however, is used to and prefers the idea of being mobile. When pay is tied to performance, they can and will perform for your business and be happier while do it. They are also more focused on the work-life balance where this type of Officing strategy fits in well.

Once great part of the changing workplace is that, depending on the type of business you operate, hours can be flexible to accommodate the life-work balance necessary to keep the best employees happy. Many areas of business, for example office space, often lend themselves to hours outside the traditional 9-5 pattern. The flexible worker can maintain balance by planning errands such as auto service or simply relaxing over a long breakfast by simply notifying their employer that their day will have altered hours. That two hours spent in the evening doing revenue-generating work can be taken off during the day instead of being considered overtime.

Employees today move from job to job rapidly, each time moving up in salary and position. In order to keep the very best on your staff, you must be flexible with them as well as expecting them to be flexible with your needs. The increased work-life balance priority is related to shifts in workplace priorities since many workers will spend as much as 95% of their time away from the traditional office space.

Values sought by today’s worker in terms of work-life balance include respect and trust from the employer. Family concerns being respected by the boss is critical. They want some hours they can telework from home when needed or when desired and more control over their work schedule. Unless a company is willing to institute flexible work policies and programs, the brightest and best will move on to a company that better understands their wants and needs.

Assess what flexibility makes sense for your organization. Would an office hoteling reservation system allow you to reduce real estate footprint and help workers feel more empowered? Would accommodating telework from home when a child is sick or another emergency fit into your business? What other flexible options could you institute to keep your best employees happy and offer them a balance between family and life needs and employment requirements?

A properly planned office hoteling reservation system can save money and increase productivity. Contact us so we can get you started finding out how Office Hoteling might work for your company.

How Work Space Evolution Enhances Employee Performance

No matter what market your business serves, you know that profits are earned because of good, talented, employees working hard. Without these valued employees you would not have a thriving enterprise. And the better the team members perform the more your business will thrive.

So much of business performance today is knowledge-based work. People who have that knowledge and creativity are sought after by many companies and today’s workforce feel comfortable changing jobs several times in their career. This is so unlike our parents and grandparents where a person secured a job and stuck with that employer until they earned the gold watch at retirement.

Clearly, this means that those companies that are able to keep the talented knowledge employees happy will retain the talent longer than companies where employees do not feel valued, love their work and their work environments. When an organization can evolve to provide their team with practical options regarding where and sometimes even when work is performed, employees can choose work styles that best fit their personal needs.

One employee may work best in complete silence with no hustle and bustle around. That person may prefer to work from home, if the home office is quiet, several days per week and especially when performing more tedious tasks, coming into the office only as needed. This type of employee must be a self-starter who works well with little direction.

Another employee may thrive on the networking and sense of competition that the traditional office provides and prefer to come to the main office most days. These tend to be people who require a little more direction. While this employee will likely readily accept and implement technological advancements, they may be a bit hesitant when first making changes in processes to improve them.

Yet another type of employee may work best while on the move, working in third spaces such as cafes and internet hotspots while between meetings with clients. This type of working tends to be a real self-starter who has a strong dislike for the hassles of involved with reporting to a traditional office just for the sake of being seen. It is likely that this person will fully utilize each new technological development that makes their work faster and easier and embrace positive changes. This work style may involve some days spent at the office, some days where a few necessary minutes are spent at the office, and other days where all the day is spent working with clients or spots near the next client’s office.

An employer who can accommodate each of these types of employee will find it easier to retain talent and a high degree of production. When employees find they can work in whatever style suits them best for each specific goal or task, they are happier and feel empowered. Happy, empowered employees product more and stay with your company longer.

Six Factors That Can Help Turn Your Office Space Into a Great Workplace

Everyone wants a workplace that is wonderful but why is one workplace great while another is lacking? Is it the leased office space that makes a particular firm productive and profitable? Could it be the specific office furniture or location? None of these things alone make any workplace truly great.

A great workplace is not about the brand of computers, the prestige of the building’s address. Here are six factors that can work together to allow business owners to create an organization that excites employees, resulting in the reputation of being a great workplace.

  1. Replace Policies with Company Mission: Hiring, motivating and retaining top notch employees if not about policies; those are simply rules. Create a company mission and vision that the team believes in and supports. With passion for a mission based on the CEO’s vision, rather than a bunch of policy statements, cultivates a real team capable of leaping forward with ideas and innovations as well as loyalty and hard work.
  2. Nurture Collaboration: Never stifle team members’ desires to work together, carrying ideas from one area of the business into others. Create a workplace where each group or department is allowed to freely convey ideas to other organizational groups. The pay-off in productivity, amazing leaps forward and trained staff retention is incredible.
  3. Cultivate Agile Workspaces: Today’s office space is not the traditional cubicle or corner office. An office hoteling software application allows easy utilization of much smaller workspaces and allows each member of an organization to work in the style that is best for them. Technology allows the telecommuting or third place team members to only be physically in-office as needed. Work areas that provide desks or standing work counters allow team members to avoid the strain of sitting at a computer immobile for hours at a time. Staying in close contact does not have to mean being in the same conference room any longer. The office space of today is any area where business can conveniently and productively be conducted.
  4. Replace Ownership with Membership: Everyone employee is accountable to their customers and managers but in the past processes were “owned” by an employee, generating office stress and politics as power plays were often used to try to win the ownership role. Instead, remove the territorial nature of office spaces and encourage the concept of being privileged to be a member of a team or teams that create revenue and find ways for the company to save money. It becomes everyone’s process and fosters a sense of belonging and identity in the work environment.
  5. Create a Quality Experience for Employees: It is little surprise that employee retention is low in those workspaces that are dull and uninspiring. Create an office space that team members what to enter into and do work. Strive for a vibrant, magnetic space that draws people in during their in-office work time. This engages employees and they will look forward to the connected, exhilarated feeling obtained when they need to hotel an office space for an hour or a day.
  6. Stay on the Cutting Edge: Today’s fast paced, constantly changing economy allows those companies built on flexible office spaces with strong company values and loyalty to survive when others around them fall. As work methods, technological capabilities and mobile computing power speed along, use best practices to stay on the cutting edge. Remember that it’s the people who create value in a knowledge based company; an office is just a space that houses technology where people can come perform productive tasks.

These are some of the keys that can turn your office space into a great workplace for your employees, making them happier and more productive at the same time.

Four Generation Workplaces:
Why Different Management Styles are Necessary

For the first time in history, managers are faced with the requirements to effectively manage four different generations in the workplace. The future will likely continue to contain four generations even as those generations move along the timeline of life and business.

What Generations are Working Today?

According to the Age and Sex Composition, the generational breakdown of employees and managers today fall into these categories:

  1. Veterans born prior to 1946: This group makes up 2 percent of the workforce at the time of the census data collection and reporting in 2017.
  2. Baby Boomers born in the post-World War II years: This group is defined in the reports as those being born between 1946 and 1964 and make up 25  percent of the workforce.
  3. Generation X members, aka Gen Xers: are considered to be the segment born between 1965 and 1980 and make up 33 percent of the total workforce today and
  4. Millennial or Generation Y is the workforce members born after 1981 through present and total 40 percent of the total.

As time passes and the older generation disappear an additional, a younger generation will come of age so business will find it necessary to remain in touch with the remaining worker generations and develop ways to effectively work with the newer generations. Each generation has its own work style and lifestyle.  Managers need to understand what they need to do to encourage employee productivity. In the future and right now it is critical to learn to deal with the workers currently in the business world. This is crucial to producing profit and growth in any form of business.

Managing The High Maintenance Generation Y (Millennials)

The youngest group of employees in the workplace today is comprised of those born after 1981 and generally considered to be from before 2005s. This group is known as Generation Y or Millennials and they make up 40  percent of the total workforce according to Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data. The American Society of Training and Development reported that during the next 20 years, 76 million workers will retire while only 46 million workers will enter the workforce to replace them. Most of these 46 million workers will be Millennial generation workers. Just as the three older generations in today’s workforce, Gen Y workers have unique desires and needs that they expect from their manager and the business for which they work.

Generation Y employees will be crucial to business enterprises. They will certainly change the way business is conducted in many ways. But, in currently and in the immediate future these employees offer great challenges to management to ensure these workers integrate with the existing workforce with as little conflict as possible.

Among the positive traits brought to the workforce, one of the major benefits that Millennials bring t the workplace is their high degree of technological skills. These employees were practically born with a computer in front of them and are intrigues by each and every development in the work of Information Technology.

Millennials grew up with digital global communication capability at their fingertips. Information of all kinds is expected to be immediatly available on demand. They understand using virtual teams to solve problems and are extremely team oriented.

Millennials view the business work as a global workplace, viewing the entire world as potential sources of information, clients, and community. Millennials seek fast-track career positions, frequent positive feedback, the latest technology and challenging training opportunities. Their outspokenness brings them to challenge long outdated work policies and conventions, offering businesses to perform a check on the hypocrisies and shortcomings of today’s workplace. Ultimately, Gen Yers may well drive change for the better.

Much has been said and published about the negative points of Millennials. They tend to have a sense of entitlement and are outspoken. This group of workers does not take constructive criticism well and require more direction and feedback from superiors than previous generations. Fortune magazine stated in its May 28, 2007 edition that this group are “the most high-maintenance, yet potentially most high-performing generation in history because its members are entering the workplace with more information, greater technological skill and higher expectations of themselves and others than prior generations.”  Additionally, Time’s July 16, 2007 edition stated that members of Generation Y want the kind of life balance where every minute has meaning; they don’t want to be slaves to their jobs as they feel their Baby Boomer parents were and often still are. Millennials also want employers to be socially responsible causes and allow for volunteer commitments through the use of flex-time or compensation time. Flexibility in work hours is important to this group of workers.

Yes, this generation requires a great deal of management, but it is well worth the effort to recruit them into your business They are smart and have the drive and creative thinking to make a real different in the business world and in a company’s profitability.

It is clear that recruiting Generation Y members and adjusting to their wants and needs will prepare industry for the entry of the next generation, people that are expected to be even more technology oriented. While this generation does not even yet have a “name”, it won’t be long before they begin entering the workforce and seeking employment in your company.

By understanding the four major groups into today’s workforce and providing for each group’s needs, effective employees can find their jobs satisfying and are more likely to remain with your business. Each group brings many positive aspects, all of which can be used effectively to gain greater efficiency and streamline operations to ensure profitability.

Managing the Baby Boomer Generation

Baby Boomers are those born in the post World War II years, from 1946 through 1964. This group makes up 25 percent of the current workforce per the Age and Sex Composition. These workers bring unique work styles into the work environment and require different management styles on the part of superiors. Currently they hold the majority of leadership positions in the workplace.

Like the veterans born before 1946, this group did not group up with technology as part of their childhood. Even during most of their higher education, computers were huge things that read punched cards or difficult to program units that could do less than our phones do today. Baby Boomers are, however, excited by technology and find adapting easier than the older generation. Most Boomers reach out for training to incorporate the newest techniques into their skills.

Baby Boomers value respect for their long service, skills, knowledge and managers will find recognition for Boomer’s wisdom is a key to successful integration of these workers and managers into the profitable organization. Managers of Boomers should honor the history and memories brought into the work environment because past experiences can bring understanding to current situations, providing positive outcomes. When policies are placed in a historical perspective, employees can often understand and accept more easily.

Baby Boomers find recognition extremely important. Whether recognized personally or publically, motivate Boomers through recognizing their accomplishment and clearly expecting superior outcomes from their efforts will help ensure happy Boomers. Embrace their best ideas and implement those into processes and methods.

Boomers tend to have conflict between their desire to compete on an individual basis and their desire to be part of a team. Encourage these workers to focus on the team in the short-term as an effective means to bring personal recognition and success for themselves in the long term.

Boomers also find conflict with the generation born before 1946 because the older generation tends to feel entitlement to perks on the job. Boomers often have the false feeling that those employees have not paid the dues they have to gain their positions. They also tend to find conflict with the younger generations coming into the workplace with high levels of technical expertise and feel they are unfairly competing with this generation that they view as “coddled”. By placing Boomers in mentoring positions, managers can often mitigate these negative feelings and generate feelings of teamwork and workplace “families”.

Managing the Veteran Generation

There are two groups in the workforce today who were born before 1946. Veterans of the Second World War make up about 2% of the employees, including managers, comprising the current workforce. This workforce group, sometimes called the Silent Generation, Greatest Generation, or Paper Agers, requires special management considerations.

The workers in this group were largely not exposed to technology and computers until these methods became a necessary part of the employment. Often they feel that due to their impending retirement they should not be required to move into the computer age. Because the work methods used early in their career were low-tech yet workable, they want to continue to use printed paper trails and other more familiar methods that they are comfortable with. Yet, the work environment has moved into high-tech and these workers are forced to adapt. Technology is the major hurdle for the generation of workers born prior to 1946. This can cause conflict between the Silent Generation and those born into the age where technology was part of their lives from childhood onward.

Paper Agers often feel that any information not presented in hard copy has little meaning. They find it difficult to conform to the paperless workplace. Their strong work ethics and “get it done” attitudes can add strength to teams and tasks assigned to be worked alone. This group of workers has no room for failure and drive toward success. They strive to please superiors in all their efforts and they do fine ways to adjust to technology when presented with training opportunities.

Often, veterans born prior 1946 find themselves in management positions because they are long-term employees and tend to be upwardly mobile in the organization chart. Their structured backgrounds lead them to have strong respect for hierarchy.  They build strong relationships based on loyalty, structure and time. They work well in management positions because they have been long exposed to experiences where information was provided on a “need to know” basis. This makes them able to keep information to themselves where necessary and provide information to the right parties when necessary. Their frugal natures make them capable of adhering to both budget and schedule.

It can be very difficult at times for younger managers to relate to the workers from this era. Frustration arises when the high-tech manager has to deal with their lack of native technical expertise, but they can excel in technical positions when provided necessary training. The younger manager may have grown up with high-tech and resents the cost and time required to train these workers in technology. Yet, the long-term work experience and lessons learned gained from these workers can lead to creative ideas that generate greater profit for the organization. Therefore, younger managers should be trained to value these workers and utilize their skills while providing growth opportunities through technical training.

Final Words

As you can see, there are many factors involved in creating a great workplace. Hopefully we have given you some ideas you can work with to enhance your business.

If you are looking for the right office space to create your great workplace, we’d love to help. It is what we do on a daily basis through out the US and Canada. Give us a try. No cost and no obligation. Let us know what you are looking for and we will get right on it.

Office Space Alternative Choices for Smaller Businesses

office space alternativesIdentifying your priorities is a key to finding the right office space and determining an office space alternative for your company whether it is large or small. A full needs analysis is critical in the beginning of the process to make sure you are looking for what you need. Studies have shown that what matters most when selecting office space for rent is pretty consistent.

Here is where the priorities stand in importance:

  • Location 50%
  • Value 35%
  • Image 10%

If you want to go into more depth in analyzing your needs, we provide an Office Space Planning Checklist on our site so that you can make sure to consider all the major considerations when starting the process of finding you office space. In addition to the checklist we also offer an Office Space Calculator that allows you to determine the amount of office space you will need.

Operating a small business can be both exciting and lucrative. More and more people are leaving the traditional workplace to open their own ventures and becoming quite successful. Freelancing is becoming more and more popular. Many startups begin with only the owner working in the business which makes leasing or renting office space the largest overhead expense. There are practical ways to cut this big overhead item by thinking creatively. There’s no reason that every business needs a walk-up storefront in order to succeed.

Other than trying to find a small conventional office space for lease, here are some of the office space alternative choices available for smaller businesses:

Share an Office

If you have friends or colleagues who are also starting businesses that don’t require storefronts, consider leasing a spacious one or two room office and split the expenses equally. This reduces the costs for electricity, internet, janitorial, and other equipment leases. Instead of each office partner procuring a copier, fax, and other equipment that both parties use, only one item is needed, significantly cutting the cost. Compatible services work well in shared office spaces. One example that has proven to work great in shared spaces might be a software development company and a computer technology company. There are many other compatible combinations; just be sure there won’t be a conflict of interest or direct competition. Instead, seek an office mate that will be synergistic to your business, so you can help each other grow and thrive.

Executive Suite

These are shared office with services run by a management company. They provide not only office space but furniture, phones, Internet, office equipment and administrative service. They are typically a full floor of a prestigious office building and you will have lots of other small businesses around for networking.

Selecting the right serviced office is an important step in ensuring the success of your business. The reason for this nomenclature is that the office comes with all of the most common services already in place. This type of office is often called a “turn-key” office or an executive suite.

If you need a venue to hold meetings with clients, sign contracts, negotiate, and do some paperwork, this office solution might be just what you should lease. By renting this type of business space, you’ll have a furnished private office with computer equipment but share common needs such as reception area, meeting room(s), and other resources used by the entire group housed in the overall space. You’ll be able to use certain equipment and services on a “pay per use” basis.

Here are tips and caveats you should be aware of when selecting a serviced office for your business needs:

  • Location: Choose a location which is convenient for you, but also convenient for your clients. Is there parking available either on-site or nearby? What about handicapped parking? Is the building easy to spot or well-known? You want your clients to be able to find you easily and get to your door without walking blocks in the wind, rain, heat, or cold.
  • Appearance: Does the building entrance, lobby, and office interior make the statement about you and your business that you want and need? You need furnishings which are attractive and elegant yet not pretentious. Making the right statement about your operation is critical. Is the meeting room comfortable enough for a two- or three-hour meeting if those are occasionally part of your business lifestyle?
  • Equipment: Learn what equipment is provided in the turnkey office lease. You will likely find a desktop computer included but check to make certain it is powerful enough to meet your needs. Learn what the restrictions are regarding bringing in your own laptop or other equipment if needed. Realize that equipment you own may not be covered by the insurance covering other equipment, so keep this in mind and learn if the services provided by any specialized equipment are available nearby for a fee. Also, learn what speed internet connection is provided and ensure the speed meets your needs. If wifi is important to you, find out if it is in place.
  • Receptionist: Listen to the receptionist answer a phone call or call in yourself to see how the phone is service. Your messages will be taken by this staff person and your clients will have contact with him or her, so you want to ensure the job is done well.
  • Pay Per Use: Speaking of fees, you want to make sure exactly what the fees are for every pay-as-you-go service. These services will almost certainly include use of the copier and fax machine but may include other services such as large paper printers, binders, or other less common equipment. Ascertain that the costs are reasonable. Compare prices with nearby providers for services you use in massive quantities; it may well be less expensive to have the local Kinko’s or similar store produce large copying jobs. Ensure you don’t get “nickeled and dimed.”
  • Lease Provisions: Carefully read all the provisions in the rental agreement. Unlike renting vacant office space which you staff, there will be extensive details about what your private area will contain and what can or can’t be done with it, who must maintain what items, and other matters which deserve your attention.

Provider: Find a reputable executive office suite provider to help you locate the perfect serviced office. You can find great brokers online, Like OfficeFinder.com, who have sound knowledge of this type of office and are waiting to help you.

Coworking

Much like office sharing, co-working is a office space alternative concept originated in 1999 where entrepreneurs and small business owners who share the same values ban together to form a community of business people. Coworking usually begins when networking partners find they enjoy the social aspects of working in the same space and may often help either other’s business in various ways. The partners then lease an office space, sharing all expenses. Each of the co-working partners conducts their own business in their own workspace in the shared office and the co-workers may share support staff such as receptionists or clerical staff in order to keep overhead costs low while providing everyone effective support for their small businesses. This concept is growing into a great solution for hundreds of like-minded small business owners.

Coworking is a style of work which 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.

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. Surveys show that many employees worry about feeling isolated and losing human interaction if they were to work remotely. Roughly a third of both private and public-sector workers also reported that they didn’t want to stay at home during work. Coworking 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.

Business accelerators, business incubators and executive suites do not seem to fit into the coworking 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.

Coworking is not only about the physical space but mostly about establishing the Coworking community where businesses can work together creating a synergy.

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 Coworking communities have been formed by organizing Casual Coworking events that can take place in people’s living room or in public places such as suitable cafes, galleries or multi-functional spaces. During these events Coworkers can experience the benefits of Coworking and get to know each other which lowers the barriers to join a Coworking space later.

Virtual Office

Today, you really don’t need a specific location for an office with walls. With mobile wireless internet services, hotspots available in most metro locations and even urban areas, multiple personal data devices, and smartphones that do almost everything a computer does, it is possible to work anywhere at anytime. You can operate your business from your living room sofa, poolside, in your vehicle (please stop your vehicle in a safe location before texting or computing for safety), in a coffee shop, at McDonald’s, and right at your client’s desk. By using online services such as GoogleDocs, your information can be safely stored online for presenting to your client easily. With outsourcing of many tasks, you can take your laptop and smartphone and conduct business in any location you desire. If you do have a need for an office, Executive Suites also offer a virtual office service as a office space alternative that allows you to use an office or conference room on an as needed basis.

Lease a Desk in a Business that Buys Your Services

Often, a small business begins because on business requires the services that will be offered. For example, an insurance company may regularly require the services of a licenses investigator. If your small business is complementary to a local business, check into leasing a desk in an unused area of the office. In tough economic times, many offices are willing to lease a desk space to a small business that is not in conflict with their own business.

Home Office

The vast majority of small business startups begin in a home office. This type of office space alternative allows the entrepreneur to begin conducting business without making a huge commitment to overhead expenses. Also, many owners of small startups begin their venture while working a traditional career, making certain their business will succeed before giving up the regular paycheck. Some of these small businesses never move out of the home office, even after hiring an employee or two. Of course, if the operation grows large enough or requires a great deal of inventory, the time will come to move from the home, but many virtual service businesses never leave the home office.

More and more entrepreneurs today are operating small but profitable businesses from the comfort and convenience of their own homes. Most home-based businesses start small and provide a second income to a person that works in a traditional workplace. As the business grows and thrives, many are choosing to grow their home businesses and give up the traditional job.

There are some very clear advantages to being able to work from a home office; there are also some drawbacks to consider. Here are a few of the points to consider if a home-based business is in your future:

Pros:

Freedom: When working from home, you can often set the hours you want to work. You can maintain better flexibility when time is needed for children, doctors appointments, and other things you’ve longed to be able to fit into your schedule. This can be a huge advantage for self-motivated people. Lots of productive work can be accomplished after the kids are in bed or very early in the morning.

No Commuting Hassles: No one really enjoys commuting to work, whether they drive, carpool, or take mass transit. Commuting eats into your free time when working in a traditional office. With a home-based business, your commute is only the distance from your bedroom to the room you have set aside for your workspace.

Time Savings: Without the commute, you will save many hours a week that you would be normally in your car.

Tax Benefits: Home businesses often qualify for business dedications when income tax times rolls around. Of course, you’ll need to speak with your tax professional but you’ll likely be surprised at how much you can deducted for your home office and operating expenses, significantly reducing your tax burden.

Low Startup and Operating Costs: There is little overhead with an office space in your home. After all, the room was already there, you just hadn’t defined it as your office previously. You may need to update your computer or add an extra phone line for faxing, but the costs of start-up will be minimal compared with a traditional office. Also, there’s no rental or lease to worry about. You don’t have to own nearly as large a collection of professional clothing when working from home.

Cons:

Discipline: Working from home requires a great deal of self-discipline. It’s very easy to become motivated at first, but over time it is also easy to allow yourself to see all sorts of things that need done around the home and begin procrastinating about business tasks.

Business and Family Overlaps: It’s also very easy to allow your family to interrupt your business time. Just as easy, many people end up spending time working that should have been quality family time. Making a set of clear boundaries is necessary but difficult.

Boundary Issues: It is very easy to “go to work” since it is just around the corner, but it can lead to family problems of another kind.  There is no boundary between home and work and it can become a problem, or a very delicate balance, for the very highly motivated entrepreneur.

Stagnation: Lack of social contact is an issue for some outgoing people who decide to try working from home. It’s also very easy to lose contact with your professional network. This makes it much more difficult to remain on the cutting edge of progress.

Pressure and Stress: While working from home is flexible, it is also easy to work yourself into stressful, pressured situations. You want to please all your clients and generate constant leads. Many people become overwhelmed by trying to do too much. Some set unrealistic goals. They attempt to achieve them while others simply take on too many clients or fail to outsource when necessary.

Image: Depending on your client and customer contact, your company’s image could come into question. Setting up a client meeting at home or Starbuck’s can be less than impressive. There are alternatives such as a virtual office. They are pay-as-you-go subscriptions for office space. You have an official business address with an executive suite operator. You can use their facilities on a “as needed” basis.

Warehouse Rental

Storage warehouses of various sizes are zoned commercial and in most areas can be used as a business location. These warehouse locations are great for the small startup business that manufactures a product, purchases and adds quality to an existing product before sale, and service companies that provide auto repair, computer repair, and similar services.

If your business is the type that does not really benefit from a “flashy” storefront, this can be a great solution for keeping your startup costs very low. Traditionally, people seeking auto repair, auto body work, auto paint, motorcycle accessories or repairs, and similar services tend to believe that if the storefront is too fancy, they will be overcharged. These types of business can actually benefit from the casual office space offered by leasing a storage warehouse. Just make sure the type of business you are starting meets the zoning regulations and the landlord’s lease restrictions.

We’d be happy to help you with finding the right office space alternative. Let us know a little about what you need and we can get to work identifying some options for you. There is no cosst for this service. Give us a try!

 

3 Flexible Office Space Alternatives to Conventional Office Space

flexible office space alternativesLooking for flexible office space alternatives? Don’t want a conventional office space? Considering your alternatives for a workspace? If you are starting of new business, considering a new base of operation or need a physical office space, here are some modern alternatives that can save you money on your rent costs; Coworking Space, Executive Suites and Virtual Office.

Coworking Space

Have you heard about “coworking space”? Unlike the typical office setup, a Coworking Space allows you to work in a casual and relaxed work environment that will suit your style and requirements. This is a facility that you will share workplaces by different professionals, different industries and mostly freelancers. Coworking Space promotes collaboration, creativity, best practices sharing, networking, socializing and creating new business opportunities. This is great for freelancers and independent professionals because of its flexibility allowing you to expand or contract as needed, with no long-term contracts. Coworking spaces are generally less expensive than Executive Suites, which you will find out more information about next. More…

Executive Suites

Now if you need more privacy and confidentiality, you should investigate an Executive Suite. Executive Suites are essentially shared offices with services provided by a management firm. They are also known as an Office Business Center or serviced offices. The disadvantage of this privacy is that you will miss some of the networking and collaboration available in coworking spaces. However, this is also great for small businesses and startups. You get the same benefits or services of having own facility at lower cost and with no long-term commitments. It is a great way to have project a good brand and identity to your client as they your office located in impressive business centers. More…

Virtual Office

Home based jobs, running or starting up small businesses from your home are very rampant nowadays. This is because of the available technologies and internet access can provide, nothing is impossible in running your business wherever and whenever you want. Almost everything can run virtually in the cloud. However, we must accept that frequently clients and customers are looking for assurance the and one way to give them that is to provide an established office address. A Virtual Office rental is one of the solutions. Having an established and prestigious business address will make your clients or customer more feel secured and confident in doing business with you. In Virtual Office, you’ll get to enjoy the same convenience of having your own business address such as having a local number, mail box, admirative support and very presentable meeting rooms at low cost. You can continue working comfortably of your choice, from home or other location while you keep your virtual office as your official business address. More…

All these flexible office space alternatives offer benefits to small entrepreneurs or working from home businesses and freelancers. It will simply give you the office-feel environment, yet you still have the benefit of flexibility.  Some of the common advantages of getting these types of office set are that you will be more effective; especially if you are working from home. It is a much better replacement if you sometimes use cafes or restaurants to work or meet clients. They also will help you avoid distractions.  Working in these types of workplaces will help you avoid loneliness and burning out. You will be surrounded by other passionate entrepreneurs who will help energize with their energy in striving for success. Most importantly is the flexibility, it allows you to rent a space shorter or longer, bigger or smaller space, it’s very flexible allowing you to work your style and within your budget.

Whether it is a virtual office, Coworking Space and Executive Suites, we hope we helped you to get a better idea of your office space options.

OfficeFinder is ready to assist you in your search for flexible office space alternatives at no cost to you!

OfficeFinder, LLC is a leading web-based office space referral and information network with highly qualified local office space leasing and sales professionals throughout the US and Canada. OfficeFinder collaborates and continuously exerts effort to connect with large, small and well known commercial real estate companies.  Professionals from OfficeFinder are great partners who can help you to locate and find the right business space that suits both your needs and style. Simply contact us and provide a few details for us to be able to assist you. There is no obligation and there is no cost to you. You get assistance and options you need in finding the best workspace for you and your company!

Why Coworking is Cool: Understanding the Reasons Behind Its Popularity

CoworkingIn recent years, coworking has been popular, especially among freelancers and small business owners who do not have the luxury of financial resources to afford their own office. That being said, the rest of this post will quickly tackle some of the reasons why coworking is cool and why it will continue to be hot even in the years to come.

It Is Economical

 The practical cost of coworking is one of the reasons why it’s cool. With the rising costs of real estate, renting or building a big office is no longer feasible, especially for entrepreneurs who are just getting started. With this, a coworking space is the perfect alternative since you will be able to enjoy affordable rates. They have different packages that will suit varying needs and preferences. Also, because of the tight competition, a lot of providers are driving their prices down.

If you are looking for shared Dallas office rental that is affordable, one option that you should not miss is thecommondesk.com.

It Is Versatile

 Another reason why coworking is cool is its flexibility. You will have different packages to choose from depending on what is it that you need. For instance, at The Common Desk, you can rent shared desks or private offices. Many coworking spaces have packages that are available on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. You do not need to be tied to a long-term lease.

It Creates a Community

 In an article from Time about why coworking works, it has been noted that it is a space where members are encouraged to explore their shared interests. It is where you can meet like-minded individuals. It fosters collaboration and networking. It will also allow members to get out of their comfort zone. You will surely find new friends, as well as potential employers and employees. There are workshops and other events that will provide opportunities for growth. Being part of a community is surely better compared to working by yourself at home, especially for freelancers.

It Gives You More Control

 In a post from the Harvard Business Review that tackles the reasons why people thrive in a coworking space, one of the reasons cited is that it provides more control of your job. Many of these places are accessible round-the-clock. You can work at your own time and decide how long your breaks will be. You will not be tied to a strict company policy. You will have more freedom to be yourself. The autonomy that results from coworking in such a place will definitely have a huge impact on your productivity, and in turn, the quality of your outputs.

From the discussions above, we hope that you had an understanding of why coworking spaces are surfacing left and right. The trend is expected to continue through the years as more and more people look for economical alternatives to have a productive workspace without the need to spend a fortune.

How Coworking Office Space Boost Professional Success

coworking office spaceThe advantages that coworking office space has over traditional office spaces for employees or home offices for the self-employed far outweigh countless other options. But why is that? In this post, we will explore a few reasons why coworking office spaces boost professional success and help both individuals and teams thrive in their work.

  1. Greater Networking Opportunities: When a professional occupies a co-working space with other professionals from various industries, it immediately increases their network and their opportunity to make important contacts. For freelancers who spend the bulk of their time working from home or at the local cafe, they have far fewer chances of networking with new people on a daily basis. Coworking spaces have a built-in network of different professionals all ready to meet and grow new alliances and start new projects.
  2. Coworking Boosts Greater Productivity: There was a study done that showed that people who worked out with other people or in public at the gym as opposed to in their home performed much better physically and enjoyed an overall better workout. The same could be said about coworking. When a professional chooses a coworking space over their own home, they immediately minimize distractions such as the temptation to wander over to the fridge every half hour or have the TV playing in the background. When a freelancer is working among other freelancers, they will experience higher levels of focus and productivity.

Want to learn more about the ways that coworking office space boosts professional success? Don’t hesitate to contact us today!

Flexible Workplaces: Just What the Entrepreneur Needs

Flexible workplacesStarting your own business is a bit like “leaving the path during a hike and creating a new trail through the woods,” explained Gearmunk founder and CEO, Erik Boles. “You might come up on an oasis” or you might find a cliff. According to a report in the Colorado Springs Business Journal, Boles is one of about 15 startups and 25 small businesses that has benefitted from the help of Epicentral Coworking, a flexible workplaces company that not only offers investment money to new businesses but also a downtown coworking space in which the company can take root. About seventy percent of new businesses fail, the report notes, and Epicentral’s aim is to give as many new businesses a leg up as possible.

Money isn’t the only issue that startups face, the report explains. Beyond that, it’s a lonely venture in which founders are in urgent need of community support. And that support is what flexible workplaces like coworking space or executive suites can provide. The CEO of Epicentral notes that many of the people working there will contract the services of others there, or even hire them as employees. Five major projects have resulted in the ability of the coworking startups to lend their expertise to each other.

In addition to the help from a community of other small businesses and startups, companies in coworking spaces or executive suites find flexibility in leasing — renting a desk or office space for a few hours a day or for weeks at a time instead of being tied to a long term lease such as a traditional office space would provide. And for some entrepreneurs, that’s just the kind of help that can make the difference between blooming and bombing.

Would you like to know more about flexible workplaces like coworking spaces or executive suites and the impact they can have for new businesses? Contact us.