Millennials and coworking
Actually, coworking is a very nice option for that kind of millennials who start their own business. But first of all, I want to make this clear: I don’t like tags. They limit, box and impede to go deeper into a topic. One of the trendiest tags nowadays is millennials, which includes people born, approximately, between the second half of the 80s and the second half of the 90s in capitalist societies. I don’t pretend to seem a hater, but I think any kind of generalization is inappropriate, especially when it’s about a collective.
Nevertheless, as a millennial I can get that earlier generations don’t understand our lifestyle and the way we relate to an environment that is changing at an exponential rate. Sometimes even for me it’s difficult to understand people who’s just five or six years younger than me.
“What is a coworking? An offices building?”
A bit more than four months ago, I started working as a community builder at CREC Coworking. During this time, I got to discover a new face of this fast social change we are living: the work culture. Thus, I’ve had to face a funny situation several times: explaining to my parents, uncles, aunts and grandparents what a coworking space is. “But, what’s that? An offices building?“, they ask me.
There’s no doubt there are differences between how millennials live their professional life and the way earlier generations do, which doesn’t mean, of course, that people over 35 can’t have a millennial mindset (as I said before, I’m not a big fan of generalizing). What’s true, as I realized recently, is that there are some particularities in the way millennials work, even if they are freelancers or employees. These singularities have made a lot of companies change their structure and work conditions.
All these variations are included by a concept which has lately become quite popular: future of work, which refers to the study of the evolution of work in the digital and global era. I won’t deepen into the aspects young people value when working for an organization, which has been widely explained. What I will do is identifying benefits coworking spaces bring to young professionals:
This is very appreciated by millennials when it comes to work, and something coworking spaces can offer in terms of timetables, prices and spaces. Since the beginning, at CREC Coworking we are sure it is crucial to adapt to coworkers’ needs so they can develop their projects as good as possible.
Normally coworking spaces are placed in open, diaphanous and lightful venues, which enhances creativity. Young professionals and entrepreneurs’ roles use to include creative processes, for what it is essential to have a kind and comfortable environment. To reach this, it is helpful to pay attention to detail when planning the decoration, the interiorism, the cleaning, the lightning and the noise, among other issues.
Coworking spaces don’t only offer working areas to their community, but they also offer polyvalent rooms, relax areas, video call rooms, coffee areas and more. Having this variety allows you to meet your clients and partners, organize events, make private calls or have a break with a nice coffee without moving from the coworking space.
Irene Escamilla, recruiter at Ametller Origen, says working at CREC Eixample enables them to “centralize the recruitment processes without moving from one store to another and to have both individual interviews and group sessions”. Furthermore, “the good impression that the space has on the candidate is so positive for the company”, she says.
Nowadays, in European big cities, due to the rise of the cost of housing, most of young people live in shared apartments, with their families or on their own in small flats. Besides this, more young professionals are freelancers or work remotely for a company. This two trends cause that they look for more appropriate working spaces than a bar, a small desk in a bedroom or a living room crowded by their flatmates.
The CREC Eixample coworker Artemi Daniliuk, project manager at Oliver + Sons and former coworking space manager, thinks “working at a coworking space is more professional than doing it in public venues and more productive than working at home, since there are less distractions”. Moreover, he says “fees flexibility are very important because not everyone has the same needs and resources”.
Laia Santaeugènia, who works for the travel Bracap Global Tours, is sharing her apartment with two girls and agrees with Artemi. She thinks that, even if her role could be carried out remotely, she feels more comfortable at the coworking space and, when she has distractions, at least she chats with other coworkers. Besides, she thinks “the team gets more united and the communication is more efficient”.
“I work more comfortably at the coworking than at home”
There is also a trend within young people to start their own professional projects from scratch. Coworking gives these brave guys the chance to settle down at a way lower cost than in a conventional office, the prices of which are rising as well in big city centres. Not only they can save money in the rent, but they don’t have to pay for any supplies and furniture and they avoid those headaches when moving to a new place.
Definitely, networking is one of the strong points of any coworking space. Belonging to a community of professionals from different fields offers you a wide range of possibilities to develop yourself and your projects.
“At the coworking space, young people can find more experienced professionals who can be very helpful to them”
Initiatives like CREC Connect, which connects the community of more than 250 people at CREC Coworking to help them collaborate and grow professionally, are very helpful to young people who are starting their careers and need assessment in different areas. As Artemi says, “as young people we can find professionals with way more experience than us who can teach us so much”. Moreover, he highlights that “normally people at coworking spaces are open minded, which eases collaboration and networking”.