I’ve been thinking about what environmental and personality factors make coworking attractive for some and utterly horrifying for others. A text from a homeless friend early this morning helps illustrate what I’ve been thinking AND that these concepts span across all situations making coworking less of an office trend and more of a way of life.
Text message I got: “I felt weird about going in to Wal-Mart this morning to brush my teeth. When I got to the men’s room, I found a small Chinese man already in there taking a bath in the sink. So I’m like screw it, I’m ALL IN too. I met a total stranger and now we might become roommates!”
What does this story have to do with coworking? It might be hard to tell at first glance but hang with me a bit longer.
Fulfillment of a need: my friend and his budding roommate needed to take baths and brush their teeth. They went to the same place to do it. In coworking, members need a place to get stuff done and they all come to a shared coworking space.
A container for those actions: when you’re homeless, getting a shower is just a matter of finding a public restroom that works. Coworkers need wifi, desks, chairs and a sprinkling of other people. Coworking spaces are the container.
Something in common: it was easy for my friend to join in the restroom hygiene routine because someone else was already doing it. It normalized the behavior! Coworkers attach to a coworking community faster when they find things in common with one another like the same client problems or the inability to get off social media when procrastinating!
A sense of adventure and openness: taking a sink bath isn’t anyone’s first preference but because both my friend and the man were OPEN to what might happen they will probably end up mutually solving their housing problem by sharing resources (rent). Coworkers who merely want a desk are unlikely to enjoy the experience of coworking. Coworkers who remain adventurous and open to what *might* happen themselves collaborating and having richer experiences within the community.
If you need a place to go, want people to have something in common with and have even a little adventure/openness in you please don’t put off trying us out! We won’t be bathing in the sink but we might be coloring pictures of unicorns. Are you willing to make coworking your way of life?
Join us for our Fall Potluck on Friday 10/14 from 6p-8p.
Image credit: mathplourde