If you are looking for a coworking space in Charlotte, NC or some type of shared office space, you have several good options to choose from.
Check out this article from the Charlotte Observer to learn more about how many coworking spaces are currently open for business in Charlotte, and what they typically all have to offer.
But how should you go about deciding which co-working space is right for you and your company?
In the past, we have written about the role parking, technology, and secure, reliable wifi should play in your decision-making process.
In today’s post, however, we want to focus on the most valuable tool you have when deciding on which coworking space is the best fit for you—the tour.
Taking a personal tour of the coworking space you are eyeballing is the best way to know for sure if the space is right for you.
Almost all coworking spaces in Charlotte offer tours during certain hours of the day. Here at The Launch Factory, our tour schedule is Monday through Friday during the hours of 10am, 12pm, and 3pm.
The tour is important because it allows you to get a feel for the commute, parking, and entry into the building.
If these are complicated, take note.
Over time, these simple things can turn into the bane of your existence. If you despise your commute only to have to battle a parking deck (and those small little parking spaces) every morning, that could be an issue.
And what if getting into the building is complicated? What will your guests and visitors think about your new office space? You need to keep them in mind as well during your tour.
Once you get the feel for the above, and you find yourself at the coworking space to begin your tour, ask yourself the following questions:
- Did the General Manager (or whomever) meet your promptly?
- Did they remember your name?
- How were they dressed?
- How did they present themselves?
- Were they nice or distant?
- Did they ask questions about you, your company, and your needs and desires or did they only try to sell you on the shared space?
- What is the “vibe” of the space like?
- Is the decor to your liking?
- Is there music playing or do you care?
- Is it clean or cluttered?
- Is the layout of the workspaces orderly, or is it a hodge-podge with no order at all?
All of these factors reflect the culture of the leadership of the space and need to be added up and factored into your final decision.
Just like during an interview, during your tour it’s critical that you ask the right questions.
The coworking space might look fantastic or be in a great area but depending on the answers to the questions below, those factors might not matter.
While on your tour, make sure you ask the general manager or tour guide the following:
- How secure is their Wi-Fi?
Don’t just focus on the speed (although that is important for sure). If the tour guide can’t give you an answer about the security of their wifi, watch out. If your information (or your client’s information) is compromised, that could spell disaster for you and your company.
Do they have a secure way of entering the space? Do they have an online member portal for submitting feedback and help tickets? Do they have projection screens and a way to easily access their presentation software? Is their print station wireless and easily accessible?
- Community Events.
Do they offer member lunches and networking events? Do they have a strategy for how members can network with one another?
- Owner Presence.
Are the owners accessible? Can you interact with them in a meaningful way? Unlike big box office spaces, coworking is designed to offer members a personal touch. Does the space and the leadership feel personal or distant?
Also, have the tour guide introduce you to some of the members (if appropriate). If you see someone in the kitchen area or a common area, introduce yourself. Ask them to share what they like about the space, why they chose the space, and what they would change.
Our advice is to not settle. Coworking is an investment in yourself, your company (and your employees) and you shouldn’t feel like you are compromising.
In the end, scheduling a tour will allow you to get a feel for the professionalism of the leadership, the culture of the space, and what it will feel like driving in, accessing, and working from the space on a day-in-day-out basis.
At The Launch Factory we provide a unique, technology-optimized, Charlotte coworking space that’s ready for business professionals and teams of all shapes and sizes. If you have any questions about our space or would like to schedule a private tour, please contact us here.