Comfortable Yet Productive: The Key Design Elements of a Coworking Space
There exists a perfect balance in the design of a coworking space: comfortable yet productive.
It’s an elusive cord to strike and one accomplished most notably through creating different environments within a space. From private offices, to dedicated desks, to a lounge chair and kitchenette, each plays an important role in the design of a coworking ecosystem.
“Everything is designed in mind of how to be your best, productive self in a comfortable, upscale hospitality-based platform,” says Scott Somerville Owner of Columbus’ Serendipity Labs locations.
Purpose-built spaces like Serendipity Labs balance environments that create a sense of community, with the need for privacy that’s important when running a business. Through coworking spaces, solopreneurs to small businesses have access to the amenities and finishes of a traditional, high-end office with the added bonus of flexible memberships to meet their budget.
The ideal coworking space includes a variety of workspaces so business owners can select the setup that best fits their needs. Open areas with soft seating or desks accommodate the coworking member in need of flexibility. On the opposite end of the spectrum is the private office – a dedicated, lockable space guaranteed for the length of the membership agreement. In the middle is a dedicated desk – an assigned space in an open area below the budget of the office, but guaranteed to be yours. Cooped up in your office? Float to an open coworking area. Just as the focus in “traditional” offices is shifting to offer a variety of environments, the same can be achieved through the design of a coworking space. As a Harvard Business Review article outlines, some employees report better performance and focus when they can choose their space.
With open environments privacy is a concern that Serendipity Labs addresses through Focus Rooms and Wellness Rooms. These smaller, closed-door rooms are ideal for phone calls, a quiet conversation, a momentary getaway or even for mothers that need to breastfeed. These small spaces and other options like phone booths keep an open floor plan design from being disruptive.
Coworking spaces are not just designed with members in mind. Spaces like Serendipity Labs focus on bringing in the community through event and meeting spaces. These options provide various-sized environments to host all sorts of events from professional meetings to more informal gatherings, but really also double as a marketing component for the coworking space.
“It’s a great way for us, not to just be part of the community, but also to allow new people that may not have been in the space before to experience the space,” Somerville says.
Beyond the physical layout of the coworking space, there are other design elements unique to these shared office environments.
The devil is in the details – like plentiful outlets so floating workers can plug and play. With several businesses in the same place, Serendipity Labs also offers a level of WiFi security that even has the green light from the Department of Defense. Somerville says it’s the strongest enterprise security level WiFi structure of any company in the industry. It’s an appealing trait for professional service providers like law and financial firms.
Serendipity Labs also takes a uniquely local spin in the finishing touches of its design. Both the Downtown and Short North locations feature the works of local artist Mac Worthington. Somerville says every few years they plan to rotate the work of other local artists into the space. That local mindset extends to other areas like catering and food vendors. Somerville says Serendipity Labs tries to incorporate as much as it can from the local community.
This mutli-part sponsored series on co-working in Columbus is presented with paid support by Serendipity Labs.
Serendipity Labs is introducing a network of inviting, inspirational members-only workplaces to Columbus, Ohio. We have combined state-of-the-art workplace design, technology, and security with the highest service level standards to deliver a consistent and peerless workplace experience.
Our mission is to deliver an upscale, hospitality-based workplace experience that can serve as an extension for businesses and a home base for established, independent professionals.
Learn more about coworking in Columbus, including Serendipity’s Downtown & Short North Locations in The Metropreneur’s Coworking & Creative Workspaces Guide.