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The Evolution of Coworking Spaces

The experience of the traditional workplace has always been one of slow evolution.

However, the recent and growing popularity of alternate options means the future of working could be a bit different than we previously envisioned. With the adaption of remote working platforms, advances in technology, and the ever-changing global workforce approach, these options are becoming widely offered and practical now more than ever.

There will always be a need for the traditional headquarters office as a means of establishing corporate identity, culture-building, and a physical touchstone for all the virtual interactions taking place ubiquitously in our everyday lives. Still, when the world was thrust into a pandemic, the topic of working remotely quickly became unavoidable and necessary to many companies. Geoff Wood, founder of Gravitate Coworking in Iowa, says, “The pandemic made all of these companies who didn’t know they could be remote, or believe they could be remote, realize that they can be,” and we couldn't agree more. Some have drawn a hard line in the sand and said that they will, indeed, return 100% to in-office, just as before the pandemic. But in doing so, are also inevitably anticipating some push-back from employees enjoying the non-commute, laundry over lunch, and comfortably adapted spaces within reach.

A counterpoint is the need to socialize, reinforce culture, and mentor newly onboarded staff; things that are more difficult as a distributed network of node points, all working independently. Haphazard home offices, interrupting kids, barking dogs, and a lack of supervision have likely fostered the incubation of a few “less than efficient” habitual working patterns. True, there are those who flourish when given free rein, but they likely do so in the office as well, dragging lesser performers along in their wake.

A great deal of effort has been poured into anticipating the next iteration of the work-from-home versus return-to-office challenge, but what about options that fall in between?

Read more of The Evolution of Coworking Spaces research paper by SHYFT Collective.



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