By Kayla Matthews
With control and flexibility in their jobs, freelancers and remote employees determine where they work. Many choose to join coworking spaces to carry out their work hours. A variety of professionals join these membership-driven communal workspaces to get out of the house or bounce ideas off other creatives.
While there are plenty of reasons to frequent a coworking space, the benefits of a diverse work area unite independent workers. After joining a coworking space, 74 percent of workers had an increase in productivity, making many people appreciate these communal areas.
With the proper design, professionals can thrive in these settings. A substantial factor in productivity involves a positive surrounding. Well-designed environments attract occupants, and the perks of the layout, furnishings and decor can help professionals stay on task. Here’s how design in coworking areas changes focus and efficiency.
Balances Distinct Productivity Styles in the Layout
Coworking spaces prioritize creativity and collaboration in primarily open office layouts, but with an assortment of people, some prefer less chatter to function at their best. Open office layouts can create high levels of stress or a lack of motivation for some, which hampers productivity. Coworking spaces that cater to both personality types help all professionals function at high levels.
Since concentration is a key part of productivity, coworking spaces are designed with the verbal and internal processors in mind. Open floor plans attract and increase productivity for interactive people and groups, while quiet zones and private alcoves allow space for others to work on their own. Members of coworking spaces are encouraged to respect designated talking and quiet spaces to help their fellow co-workers remain focused and on task.
Gives an Impression of Identity and Belonging
Individual workers who don’t have a set office may find community in vibrant, contemporary coworking spaces. They also often feel less isolated and can find belonging and recognition. Coworking spaces are more conducive for collaboration and networking, too. These components help to increase work performance and satisfaction.
Although there isn’t a set “company culture” in a coworking space, the decor can still connect workers to an overall purpose. Decorations like large-scale murals can instill enthusiasm and identity in independent workers. Adding graphics and artwork can enliven a workspace and make it a pleasant context to complete tasks in.
Boosts Moods With Visual Accents
Although it seems like a subtle aspect of design, sufficient lighting can transform a place for workers. Natural light can elevate your workplace performance because of the connection between daylight exposure at work and overall quality of life. When asked about elements of an effective workplace, over 75 percent of 250,000 employees said they feel natural light is important.
Adding more windows to the design place can help co-working spaces give independent professionals a productive edge during the workday. Thrive Workplace, a coworking community in Denver, includes natural light in their facility to cultivate a vibrant atmosphere. Greenery and office plants also help to brighten and invigorate communal work areas.
Offers a Sense of Flexibility
Certain types of stress during work can be detrimental to productivity. When you start producing low-quality work, the pressure can keep you from operating at full capacity. However, workplaces with informal breakout rooms and relaxing stations provide a chance to regroup and give your mind a break.
The right setup can amplify the freedom of independent work with additional opportunities to de-stress. Fun, versatile areas in a coworking space can diminish the burden of work, as long as they don’t impede on zones reserved for formal meetings and serious tasks. Separating the main working section from places to unwind can produce flexibility.
Incorporate Helpful Design Elements
An appealing design can set apart a coworking space and lead to further productivity for occupants. Decor, layout and accents can all form a beneficial setting that suits a diverse group of professionals. Complement the best components of communal work areas with an engaging design.
Do you use a coworking space? What would you say are the pros and cons?
About the Author: Kayla Matthews writes about communication and workplace productivity on her blog, Productivity Theory. Her work has also appeared on Talent Culture, MakeUseOf, The Muse and Fast Company.