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The 6 types of people you’ll meet in a coworking space

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
85 blog posts

When you walk away from that big glitzy corporate world and all the departments, services and co-workers that gave you daily personal and business support it can feel quite scary. However, fear not because you can find yourself a new network of people to call colleagues or coworkers in shared workspaces throughout the world (or, right here in Manchester).

You might not think so on first setting out on your own, but these people can be important to you and can stop you feeling lonely and isolated. Choosing a coworking space that has diversity of types and ages of people working in it is a good place to start.  This will give you the knowledge and experience you might need but not have access to as a freelancer, solo worker or entrepreneur.

The healthy coworker

This is the person who takes the stairs and stops us dipping in the biscuits at 11am. They arrive after a gym session, go for a walk at lunchtime and are hitting the yoga spot at the weekends. They always have a good healthy food tip and eat a delicious homemade lunch that puts your soggy sandwich to shame.

These are great people to have around as they are not judgemental but are always looking for buddies to go along with them to whatever class they are doing. They are great motivators and help us all to stop thinking like a couch potato and start thinking like a green goddess.

When we are all being told to eat less and move more these are the office buddies who will all make sure we have the energy to grow are business and be a success. There are lots of hidden health benefits of having this type of person in your coworking tribe.

The social media guru

Now, most of us understand how important social media can be to our new venture. However, above posting our weekend activities on Facebook or your lunch on Instagram many of us are not sure how to be noticed on social media. When you first start out alone, knowing there is someone who has already gone through all the pitfalls and can give you a beginner’s guide for dummies is a real advantage. A self-taught social media addict is always happy to share a skill or two but just following their social media feeds will give you a hint of what to do next. They normally also know where to direct you for some formal training. One of our members at Workplace has been great at promoting the new Google Garage on Manchester.

The integrator

This is the one who asks all the questions and gets to know everyone.  They are great introducers and know what everyone does. This makes them a real asset to the newbie as if you need any help about any subject they can normally point you in the right direction for the member who can give you help.

These people are the ones that are all inclusive and create event for others to join and get to know each other. They are not normally in it for self promotion but are naturally good hosts.

When you are first setting off or even established it can be hard to know where to go for help and support and looking no further than your co-workers can be a real cost saving exercise. It also means that often they will recommend your services when they know someone who can use your services.

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The networker

You say the word “networking events “to some people and it makes our blood run cold.  Others however thrive on it and this makes them well connected. This is the member who is always having coffee with someone or hitting an event.  If these people are good they always want to give help and so making sure they know what you do is a huge advantage. The next time they are with someone who says they need some legal advice, they are sure to recommend you if you make sure they know your credentials.

They know the networking rules – give first and receive second and we can all learn from this.

The fun one

This is the person who works hard but is also fun. Being happy is all about enjoying yourself and the occasional laugh. This is the person who always manages to lift everyone’s spirits and looks on the lighter side of life.

In Emily Madill’s recent blog shared by Huffington Post called “3 Ways to Enjoy More Play in Your Day” you could learn how to be the fun one in your shared work space!

The aspirational colleague

This sounds like it could be a negative, but it isn’t. This is the person who is working hard, motivated and dedicated to their cause. What this person does for you is drives you harder.  When you are going it alone, it is sometimes hard to motivate yourself and not get distracted.

This is the person you aspire to be.  It is like in sport they always say to play with someone who is better than you. This is the same work, alongside someone who you think is better than you that you can learn from and who makes you a better version of yourself. This is the person that will have a conversation that challenges you and tests you and is always happy to discuss your problems and challenges and help with the solutions.

So, overall being in a shared workspace does not have to be you going it alone without the traditional network of people from your corporate life. Even in a shared workspace these groups exist, and you just need to find the venue that works for you and incorporates the people that you need to help you get along.

Get to meet more of our members and what they do by heading over to our members spotlight section on our blog

We also invite you to join us for a free day to see if our people can be your people. Apply here.

Up Next

Four types of coworking spaces — the good and bad

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
85 blog posts

For those looking to work remotely, or starting your own business, you may feel like working at home in isolation is your only option. Today, this is rarely the case. Most cities have a range of work spaces available to get you out the house and socialising with like-minded people.

The choices can sometimes seem overwhelming, however. How do you know which space is right for you? Here’s our run down of the four main co-working spaces in most major cities including Manchester, and the pros and cons of each:

1. Coffee shops and cafes

This is where it all started. The ‘work anywhere’ revolution started about 20 years ago. Back then, the only option if you felt like some company was to head to Starbucks, Costa Coffee or Cafe Nero. These companies soon realised the trend, and opened one on every street corner, all offering a free Wi-Fi connection.

The coffee shop setup worked for a while, but soon remote workers discovered they needed more from a co-working space.

Pros

  • Free to use
  • There is coffee and cake available to buy when you want it
  • Often provides an easy to find, central meeting point for meetings
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Usually lots of choice and availability locally

Cons

  • Buying coffee all day can get expensive
  • Can be noisy so not always ideal for conference calls or phone calls
  • Fear of your space being taken or risk leaving your belongings unattended to use bathroom facilities
  • There are few business connections to network with

2. Pay as you go working spaces

They are normally community-based venues, sometimes cafes or restaurants geared towards remote working. They also encourage groups to host events with them, are very social and often have a programme of business and social events that you can join in.

Pros

  • Can be quite economical, especially if you are there for a short stay (pay per hour)
  • Many include food and drink in one price
  • They host events you can join in with
  • You could host your own event and people just pay as they go
  • An eclectic mix of people usually there for different reasons

Cons

  • Often not professionally designed
  • Can be quite noisy and busy
  • Often feature more lounge areas rather than office-style tables to sit at (this could be a pro for you!)

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3. High-end global coworking chains

These spaces are usually located in larger cities. They have beautiful, professionally designed interiors. They have community managers on staff, usually offer drinks and snacks, games rooms and pool tables, and cater to established businesses or well-funded startups.

Pros

  • You get to hang out with the cool kids
  • There’s a huge member network to tap in to
  • You can work in other major cities at no or little extra cost
  • Lots of events to join and network
  • There are often extra activities like beer taps, pool tables and exercise classes

Cons

  • These are large venues, some over 40,000 sq ft and over many floors so it’s not always easy to meet people unless you attend lots of events
  • Many are listed on the stock market and so are answerable to shareholders. This means profit is number one priority, not necessarily the customers. This also can mean lots of hard sell to commit to a long term contract
  • These spaces attract larger businesses who are not always interested in recruiting or networking outside their own team
  • You might be surrounded by teenage tech start-up
  • Only available on monthly full-time contracts with longer commitment for better deals

4. Independent proworking and coworking

These spaces are often in or just on the outskirts of major cities. They are normally slightly smaller than the major high-end chains of coworking spaces. They are also more varied in their offering to different businesses. Many are owner managed, so there’s more personal service and a focus on getting the space right for the members.

Pros

  • Very flexible so you can work for a day, a few days, or all year
  • They include drinks and snacks
  • More sophisticated member events that are lower in number but higher quality
  • It’s easier to get to know everyone as its a smaller, more intimate environment
  • The people are there to get work done and not just socialise

Cons

  • As independent businesses, they aren’t always located across other cities with one purchase
  • You’ll be with a smaller network of contacts
  • More sophisticated member events that are lower in number but higher quality
  • There aren’t usually games and pool tables, like the high-end coworking spaces

So, with such choice, there’s no need to stay at home; you can always find the right coworking space for you. Find out more about the different coworking options at Workplace, and the benefits of remote working with other professionals in Manchester.

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