As you all know, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about the future of coworking. Right now, coworking is a dynamic entity–a movement–that’s growing rapidly and defining itself in slightly different ways all over the world.
Although it might not feel that remarkable, each coworker makes a direct contribution to the health and future of this movement just by buying a membership, attending workshops, and telling their friends about the benefits of coworking.
The coworking movement is becoming huge, but it’s only one part of something even bigger–something we’ve talked about before called “collaborative consumption.”
This larger phenomenon has introduced new way of living, in which access is valued over ownership, experience is valued over material possessions, and “mine” becomes “ours” so everyone’s needs are met without waste.
In a word, sharing.
Coworkers know a lot about the value of sharing. We share our professional talents, time, and work space. But what about sharing outside the boundaries of our businesses and work weeks? A truly vibrant community isn’t just focused on one goal: it’s diverse, flexible, and focused on total wellness of its members, rather than just one aspect of their lives.
When a high value is placed on sharing rather than claiming territory, members of the coworking movement are better able to demonstrate their incredible worth in the community at large. Being supportive and active in sharing groups (think CSAs, co-ops, car sharing, bike lending, tool sharing, yard sharing, online media swaps, and more) outside of the space actually helps coworking take its rightful place as a vital cog in the local business ecosystem.
What kind of “outside the space” sharing have you engaged in since joining Cohere? What kinds of collaborative consumption would you like to see incorporated in the future? Share your ideas in a comment!
Image Credit: Flickr – JW_00000