Kowrk.com believes that the coworking industry will be shaped by the vision and views of Founders of coworking spaces. Thus, to identify thoughts and trends in this industry, we surveyed the Founders of such spaces in Q1 2016. The responses from all over the world have been illuminating. In our article series – ‘KoSpace Founders Say’, we will be sharing details of insights gained through analysis of responses received from multiple coworking spaces spread over ten cities across the globe. Our aim is to help and guide those who are planning to start or expand their coworking spaces in Asia and rest of the world.
In the first article of this series we are discussing what various Founders cited as their inspiration for starting a coworking space.
Helping small businesses and non profits grow
When asked why they started a coworking space, a common answer from many Founders was because they wanted to help small businesses and non profit companies grow. Creating an environment that can help foster this growth is an admirable undertaking; albeit one that takes a lot of work. These businesses can have limited funds and unique problems, so helping their infrastructure needs through logistical support, enables their growth.
Creating a local community for entrepreneurs
Given the collectivist nature of coworking spaces, this is not a surprising source of inspiration. Their spaces provide a place and opportunity for local entrepreneurs to network and get the support from other like-minded individuals. Being entrepreneurs themselves, Founders have a firsthand understanding of the need of such connections and that undoubtedly played a role in inspiring them.
Get rid of cabin fever
This is when you stay indoors or in isolation for prolonged periods of time and that leads to irritability and a dip in creativity/productivity. Generally, working from home can lead to these symptoms. Our survey revealed that many Founders dealt with it at some point. And since working in a professional environment usually cures these symptoms, building a coworking space so entrepreneurs can work without catching cabin fever, has been a motivator for the Founders of coworking spaces.
Make it easier to find investors
Usually being serial entrepreneurs, a majority of the founders interviewed knew the struggle of finding investor funding all too well. Thus they figured; why not solve that problem for other entrepreneurs (themselves included!), along with small businesses and NGOs. Investors know that when it comes to potentially ground-breaking ideas, coworking spaces can be goldmines and many keep in close contact with local KoSpaces.
Personal need for a professional atmosphere
Coworking spaces are generally a place where small business professionals, non profits and freelancers can nurture their own projects while simultaneously sharing ideas with their fellow coworkers. The Founders surveyed cited being able to do this as an inspiration for opening a coworking space. Not only to help others’ business network grow, but theirs as well. That’s why it’s fairly common to see Founders working out of their own space!
Any questions or comments? Are you a Founder of a coworking space and want to share your sources of inspiration? Let us know in the space below.