The office opposite to mine is quite unique. They have a 25+ seater and it already hosts more than 5 organizations and couple of them are start - ups. They share office space, internet, bean bags, white boards, projector, and interestingly a TT table as well (Which they have generously asked us to use as well if interested). We see youngsters mostly in their twenties or early thirties coming in any time after 10 AM and some working late night. One girl mentioned there are two employees of her organization and work for her comes from London. The twenty of them who work in the office shares an interesting camaraderie as if they were working for one organization.
Flexible workplaces are the future with increasing number of small organizations and start -ups growing our country. We will see more of millennial working in office spaces they call their “own” but shared by a few other organizations. These work places are going to be trendy and yet very functional. Check out an example – www.wework.com that is going to be in India soon I believe. A membership based service that allows to you get office space across the globe and even have a “hotdesk” based space where you just plug in an work. There are also flexible work places that provide things like dedicated desks that come with a chair, lamp, trash can, and filing cabinet, as well as printing, mail and package service and access to conference rooms and workspace in other locations. As an add on these providers also help the members to be part of networking events to connect and grow their businesses.
From an organization’s point of view this provides best of both worlds – access to an infrastructure that only large organizations provide at the same time very limited capital one-time investments. Employees also get an opportunity to work in a safe, trendy place, where they can collaborate and also get avenues to interact beyond work. Some such providers even help get deals on gym, health care, or travel. While in India we had traditional office providers who could provide a pre-set office, with most of the amenities, the concept of shared workplaces with more flexibility, co-existing of different organizational identities, and opportunities to network do and collaborate beyond work are something that are new that are going to be the future!