The Secret to Being Productive in Your Coworking Space

We’ve all been there. Stuck at the home office, wallowing alone, no friends, and an anxious eye on that package’s tracking number so you might glimpse a human being at your door.

Now we’ve all been here. At a coworking space. The lovely, people-filled, coffee-fueled respite from our home offices. We’ve found our tribe, a little slice of normal and we couldn’t be happier. Only we’re not getting as much done as we’d like to.

EEK! It’s the not-so-often-admitted-but-totally-true part of every coworking community. Sometimes, it’s just hard to focus when you’re surrounded by interesting people (not actually) working on interesting things. Or maybe your mom brought in warm banana bread for everyone and that seems REALLY important right now.

We’re happy to announce that we’ve solved this problem at Cohere and we want to share our ridiculously simple, free to everyone method for crushing our goals. TOGETHER. This is a coworking space after all. The most brilliant part of our devious plan is that you, A MEMBER, can implement this with your coworkers. You don’t even have to tell your community manager. I mean, you can. You won’t get in trouble or anything.

THE COWORK SPRINT: Your best friend for group productivity.

This method is simple. The work sprint isn’t a new idea. Product developers have used them for years to focus intently on one feature to make it ready for review at the end of the work session. We’ve tweaked the idea and made it sufficiently generic so it works for any type of job you might be doing in your coworking space.

  1. 1. Print this sheet. In fact, print 20 and leave them in an obvious spot in your coworking areas.
  2. 2. Read the instructions on the right side of the page. It’s pretty straightforward.
  3. 3. Ask your coworkers if they’d like to write down something they want to accomplish in the next 30/60 minutes. Pass around the sheet and everyone writes their name and goal on the sheet.
  4. 4. Set a timer for 30 or 60 minutes. Work really hard without interruption until the timer goes off.
  5. 5. Go around and see how everyone did on their goals. Hand out high-fives with wild abandon!

Repeat as often as necessary. We find that daily cowork sprints at 10:00 am and 2:00 pm are super effective at keeping everyone heads down while still allowing plenty of unstructured time for creation, socializing, banana bread and coffee refills.

We love to hear stories of other coworking spaces using the Cowork Sprint work sheet. Snap a picture and tweet us at @coherellc

 

August 9th is International Coworking Day 2011!

Coworking as a movement, a business solution, and a kick-ass global community is turning 6 years old on August 9th, 2o11.

On this day every year, coworkers and coworking spaces around the world take a moment to celebrate their independence as well as their discovery of all the dreams that can come true when you’ve got a solid community in which to create and collaborate.

Even though our attendance is somewhat unpredictable during the summer months, Cohere’s community is getting into the spirit of things as well! Here are a couple easy ways that you can participate in this worldwide celebration:

1. Come to Cohere’s Coworking Day 2011 Open House: Swing by between 9a-4p for snacks, coffee and high fives. Want to cowork a little to ring in your next year of independence? That’s okay too. Seats are first come first serve! RSVP here.

2. Invite someone to Cohere: What better day than a free open house? Whether you’re hanging out at a coffee shop over the weekend, or talking to a friend that owns a struggling small business, why not mention that there’s a community of independent, creative people hanging out at 215 Jefferson?

3. Show Your Coworking Spirit: It can be hard to strike up conversation with those you don’t know, so if inviting someone in person isn’t possible, think about using your multitude of social media networks. You could,

  • Use your Facebook status as a place to tell people you’re going to Coworking Day and include a link to your favorite Cohere blog post.
  • Tell your Google+ stream why you’re thankful that coworking exists and why they should try it too.
  • Tweet this: @CohereLLC is having a FREE open house on Aug. 9th. All #freelancers and #smallbusiness owners invited! http://ow.ly/5UdsU #coworking

Got other cool ideas about how we could share coworking with the Greater Fort Collins area and beyond? Share them in a comment!

Image Credit: Flickr – mdanys

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