The New Workplace Community
- Many large companies are adapting to remote work and rethinking their large offices in the process.
- The pandemic has proven that remote working is effective and necessary for the evolution of work.
- In the new ‘normal’ of remote work and decentralized teams, coworking spaces can serve as micro-HQs.
“‘Part-time cowboy and full-time drinker’ Robert Womack found gold float in 1879, which led him to digging countless prospecting holes in an attempt to find its lode, earning him the name ‘Crazy Bob’. His efforts finally paid off in 1890, when he found the El Paso lode. Bob Womack and his brother William moved to Cripple Creek, CO in 1876 where they purchased a ranch for $500 and two pigs. Womack knew that a government survey mentioned the possibility of gold in the region. Between his duties operating the ranch, he explored the region looking for gold ore. After years of prospecting, Bob Womack finally discovered gold ore. In 1890, he officially filed a claim marking the beginning of the last gold rush in Colorado that made many men rich.
Located a few miles southwest of Pike’s Peak, the Cripple Creek district wasn’t discovered until later in the ‘rush’, which was known as the ‘Pike’s Peak Gold Rush’, because Pike’s Peak was a landmark visible 100 mi out on the plains. The towns of Cripple Creek and Victor were established to serve the mines and miners of the district.”
This concept of creating communities around a workforce specific to one industry is what brought growth to many areas, especially Colorado. But this idea of physically building communities to house a diverse workforce has become severely outdated, and until recently, many companies have had to understand what distributing their workforce physically really looks like. We are now building communities of individuals under many roofs and in multiple locations.
Out with the Old, In with the New
We have come a long way from establishing mining communities, but this idea of creating a single location HQ that serves a community specific to its location has become obsolete. So why do these locale requirements still persist in our modern working world?
According to a recent article by Allwork it is revealed that this idea of remote work is not a fad or something that is going to fade out soon. The article speaks about our societal construct of outdated work practices and they bring up valid points of how large corporations are putting their money where their mouth is and transitioning to the new future of work; uplifting productivity in a modern world.
The pandemic has brought about vulnerabilities that we never thought were possible. From working at home fatigue, to having too many Zoom calls. We, as a work culture, have learned a lot in the past year the importance in working from an office. We value the ability to get up in the morning and go somewhere that has resources for our job to succeed, but also somewhere that has people we can learn from and interact with. A fundamental component to humanity is the requirement to connect with other humans.
We don’t have to have a huge office space with 50+ floors filled with people to ensure the productivity of the company is met. This can happen, and has been happening, on single level floors where the quality of people is higher than the quantity. Having your workforce spread out over many areas is proving to be beneficial with many companies. This applies to many company structures, the ability to spread out, but it might not apply to physical production-based companies that need massive warehouse space that can only be held in a single location. For those companies who are willing to embrace the evolution of remote working means an increase in smaller location-based HQs, and a more diverse portfolio of remote departments.
Some major corporations like REI and Pinterest are already setting the example by getting rid of their large sqaure foot facilities and sizing down to accommodate their employees’ needs. REI built to suit an 8-acre campus that they didn’t even bother moving into. While Pinterest just paid out $89.5 million dollars to terminate their large high-rise office suite.
What New Looks Like
The issues facing companies in the current economy is consistent and safe professional work environments, and the unsure future of the business’ success. Companies are adapting to remote work and discovering how their employees’ responsibilities can be moved to a decentralized work atmosphere. All the while companies are also rethinking long term leases on both large spaces and central location HQs. The solution to ensuring the success of remote working adoption is with large corporations continuing to accept and adapt to remote work solutions. This could be engaging in more technological advancements in remote access and/or shared networks, or even sponsorship for employees to find a remote office solution nearest them. For smaller companies who are trying to get away from the weary long-term office lease, solutions include month-to-month or short term leases in a private office space that provides great incentive plans for longer term commitments.
Remote work isn’t going away, and the pandemic has proven that our vulnerabilities can present opportunities to grow and adapt to survive.
Gold Mine = Community
Our “Gold Mining” now is focused on local communities that support the greater workforce. This community is comprised from a widely distributed workforce that collectively create their own ecosystem — schools, artisans, service workers, professionals — but all be connected into the global digital economy as well by leveraging the ability of community members to work remotely.
Flexible workspaces can serve as the micro-HQs for the local distributed workforce, filling commercial real estate and providing a physical anchor point for remote professionals. In coworking spaces, entire groups of entrepreneurs and remote workers work independently for a large variety of employers. If an industry giant downsizes or shutters completely, it is unlikely to affect all the workers in a single coworking space, creating economic resilience in that community.
While Candy Factory Coworking is positioned in the heart of downtown Denver, we provide a safe and professional atmosphere as more people re-enter the office space. We provide private offices for single employees to work out of, or we can host entire teams as a micro-HQ for their own business or as representatives of their larger company.
Large portions of this article were inspired and copied from the original article written by Jamie Orr at AllWork.Space.