Walk into any coworking space and the first thing you’ll hear is busy professionals at work: networking, brainstorming, bouncing off of others their fresh ideas to come to fruition. You’ll smell fresh coffee and see people walk by into elevators and offices. It’s a dynamic space and you might feel intimidated by just being there because at first glance there’s so much going on around you. But to everyone else in the office, this is the norm for any standard coworking space.
But what is so important about coworking (and co-living)? These are fast-growing industries that cater to a fast-growing young entrepreneurial population. You might see examples of coworking and co-living in places like the UCI Cove or the Irvine Spectrum Center; examples of industrial ecosystems operated by a like-minded community of passionate thinkers and doers. The flexibility offered by coworking and co-living encourages individuals to engage in an enhanced work culture and lifestyle, and is bound to open up new opportunities thanks to daily connections that are made within these network-building environments.
So what are coworking spaces? To put in layman’s terms, a coworking space is basically a shared office workspace. You’ll find amenities like a stocked pantry, kitchen, private conference rooms, and more, but you won’t see a cubicle office anywhere. Coworking spaces often resemble an executive suite and are home to free-lancers, start-ups, and entrepreneurs looking for a positive workspace.
Why co-working spaces? Why not work from home or at Starbucks? For starters, it’s just not as fun. Working from home or independently can seem like a task. In contrast, working in an open, shared space adds human interaction to your daily tasks, and allows you to explore changes in scenery throughout your co-working building. For freelancers, start-ups, or small business owners, renting a whole private office space might be out of the budget. So naturally, renting a shared office space that is just the right size and fits your budget is your next move. Payment options are flexible and floor plans vary depending on what the office needs! Isn’t that cool?
As a parallel growing industry, let’s take a look at co-living now. It’s pretty simple. It’s basically a private space (bedrooms and bathrooms) with shared communal areas like a kitchen, living room, dining areas, gyms, and more. You might find that these living arrangements are more common now, especially amongst people of a younger age group, because of its convenience and affordability. Co-living infrastructures are designed for community living and are often found in urban settings (close to work offices). Residents often share the rent and utility fees, as well as any chores for maintaining the upkeep of their living spaces.
The rise of a young working population and their increasing tendency to move to metropolitan areas such as Los Angeles, Irvine, or San Diego to look for job opportunities after college has increased the popularity of coworking and co-living spaces now more than ever. Keep an eye out for internship opportunities with these types of shared setups… You’ll likely end up working in one someday!