Let’s say the time has finally come where working out of coffee shops and your home office just isn’t cutting it anymore. You’ve done some research about what’s available and finally come to the conclusion that joining a coworking space is the right answer to your problem. However, you quickly realize there’s many options to choose from and now you’re left scratching your head as to how to make the right decision.
To help you, here are 4 critical factors you need to consider in order to choose the right coworking space in Charlotte, for you and/or your business.
Note* Just to be clear, in this blog we’ve decided to focus on critical elements other than cost and the quality of the Wi-Fi.
Walk into any coworking space in Charlotte and if you don’t immediately feel a sense of community and comradery among the members, you may want to keep looking. How do you gauge if a space has community and comradery?
During your initial tour, was the tour guide aloof, distracted, and uninterested in your needs? Did they sell you on the “amenities” of the space without asking what EXACTLY you are looking for? If so, you may want to keep searching.
Second, when you toured the space, was there a sense of energy and excitement or drudgery and unhappiness among the people you saw? Human beings are hardwired with an uncanny ability to gauge the ethos (or life) of a community. If you get a bad vibe, keep looking.
TIP: Don’t forget to ask if the space offers free lunches and events that allow members to meet each other. If not, you might want to keep searching.
You’ll be spending a lot of time working from your new shared office space, so it needs to be comfy.
If you are interested in a dedicated office, is the office space big enough for your team? Is the office noisy, meaning the acoustics are bad and sound reverberates? Is the lighting sufficient for your needs? Does the space have a nice kitchen and include things like a fridge, sink, plastic ware, cups, mugs, pints, etc. Do you like the chairs? Do they provide enough back support and cushion? Are the desks big enough for you and have the ability to roll (that will come in handy, trust me).
Suggested Reading: 2 Studies Point To Increased Coworking Demand in Charlotte
Be forward thinking, imagine you and your team working from the space and think through every detail before you sign a lease. Sometimes spaces will accommodate your needs, sometimes they won’t.
Nobody wants to sit in a bunch of traffic in the morning and do the same thing again in the evening. Drive the route to the space you are considering between peak traffic hours (typically 7am – 9am). Can you live with it?
Do the same thing around 5pm – 6pm (but reverse your route). Would you pull out your hair on the commute back? If so, you may want to keep looking.
Is the coworking space within reasonable driving distance (or walking distance) to restaurants, coffee shops, fitness centers, shops, and other areas that are important to you? If not, keep looking.
However, you also might want to avoid a shared office space that’s right next door to you. It can be hard for some to truly disconnect from work or, on the other hand, find it hard to push through a workday if you know your apartment is 100 ft. away.
Good naps are important though. I recommend them.
Since this is going to be YOUR office space, make sure it reflects your personal brand/vibe or the brand/vibe of your company. If you’re a laid-back freelancer, artist, creative, or the like, you might be more comfortable in a more “relaxed” office space that has lots of fabric, colors, puffy couches, and space for you to create (whether that be painting, drawing, or designing). But remember, wherever you work from, this will be the space where your visitors will come to meet you. If you go the more “cozy, creative” route, make sure it’s clean!
Nothing says unprofessional like a dirty coworking space with banana peels on the counter, trash “stored” in the corners, and the couches you sit on to plume dust. On the other hand, if you are looking for a space that is a bit more “upscale” and “high-end”, there are coworking spaces out there that will fit your needs as well. Do you want the arm chairs in the common areas to be IKEA or Restoration Hardware? Do you want the couches to be something you’d find in a college dorm room, or something from West Elm? Is the layout and colors of the space indicative of you and your company (neutral colors, open concept, industrial, tech-y) or do you care?
There are no right or wrong answers to any of these really. It all depends on who you are, who your company is, and whether the space compliments both.
At The Launch Factory we provide a unique, technology-optimized, coworking space in Charlotte, NC 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.