Page 53 - WHERE WE WORK - Schlegelmilch
P. 53

Moving between places
 A benefit that was specific to housing was the ease to start working because there was no commute necessary.
Besides the physical facilities, the places also differ regarding the social elements. What our respondents emphasized most about the co- working spaces were the events that could be organized by the co-working space or the members. During our observations, we found that all co- working spaces also had physical announcement boards where the events were promoted. Typically, the events focused on sharing skills (e.g., SEO) or networking and played a considerable role in fostering the community around a co-working space. Community was a crucial element of co- working spaces that other places could not offer:
"You don't have a community; if you are at a café, you are more to yourself, which is good because you have more focus but here at [co- working space] you have the community behind you and people who support you." (Laura, event manager, #39)
While housing and cafés can be used by anyone (for a price), most co-working spaces aim at a target group. The target group can be related to a specific industry (e.g., creative) or company maturity (e.g., scale-ups). Except for one co-working space that used a vetting system to ensure a newcomer's fit, most co-working spaces assumed that people would self- exclude after a while if there was no fit with the community. To facilitate connections between the independent workers within the coworker space, most of the co-working spaces have not only the events mentioned earlier but also community hosts who facilitate connections between coworkers, organize events and are contact person. Co-working spaces also sometimes offer additional services, such as postboxes, an on-ramp program tailored to the coworker's needs, or food. For one respondent, the latter was a specific reason to work in cafés rather than co-working spaces or housing because they did not need to leave the place to eat.
It needs to be noted that while we distinguish between the three types of places, 34 of our 45 respondents worked in all three places. Where

   51   52   53   54   55