Coworking spaces provide an excellent option for minimising overheads, but how do you successfully manage a team within a co-work space? Effective team management in coworking spaces requires the right digital tools, a strategy to leverage community benefits, and efficient knowledge management. Use these 8 practical insights to make your team thrive.
1. Leverage the community benefits
In addition to reducing overheads and no expensive, long-term leases, the benefits of coworking spaces include facilitating a stronger team, as workers can thrive in coworking because they feel like they’re part of a community. Another potential benefit is a more dynamic company culture. The fast-paced, diverse environment of coworking spaces could boost your business culture by providing an upbeat, positive environment, making your team feel like they’re a big company without actually being a big company.
Look for ways to turn this big-company atmosphere into real benefits. For example, you could leverage collaboration opportunities with complementary businesses in the building. Look for opportunities to partner with others and your team could deliver improved outcomes as a result.
2. Use digital tools
Match the physical proximity of coworking spaces with digital tools that help with collaboration. Invest in platforms and apps that meet your business and staff’s requirements. Consider how different tools can help your team share, communicate, and collaborate without friction and delay.
- Enterprise collaboration tools – This type of tool helps your team work together. It can include elements like customer databases, file sharing, and content management. Huddle and even Google Suite are examples of this.
- Content management system – A full CMS might include a social intranet, chat and messaging facilities like slack, and customer database. It can offer an online workspace where staff can easily log on and start working together in real time.
- Forums and blogs – Intranet forums are great way to encourage a more cohesive team culture and allow team members to share ideas or engage in discussions. Blogs help you broadcast and discuss important updates and detailed information about work.
3. Address knowledge management
Knowledge management is about retaining knowledge in the workplace and ensuring it’s shared among your team. The ideal outcome is to have employees working effectively together to achieve better decision making, and in turn help you realise growth and profit goals. You should have a strategy for identifying, recording, assessing, and sharing your business knowledge, which includes databases, policies, procedures, and worker expertise.
Addressing knowledge management allows you to drive stronger processes and collaboration while enhancing organisational culture. In a coworking environment, it can mean your team works more effectively together and stays focused on the work.
4. Engage in business branding
Actively promote your business brand and identity within your coworking spaces, as this can lead to a stronger business culture while driving productivity and collaboration. In a coworking environment where you’re sharing space and resources with other businesses, enforcing a strong brand identity internally is essential.
Look for ways to remind staff of your business identity and its values. For example, your ERP, CRM, and other digital tools should feature your logo. Your workspace could be labelled with your logo with signage, posters, and printed chairs covers. Small branding efforts like these can go a long way in encouraging staff to be proud of the organisation. They can encourage staff to follow your business values when dealing with customers.
5. Organise extra activities
Organising extra activities like happy hours, group fun days, and team lunches can support your team in developing stronger bonds outside the office. If your coworking space has a complimentary gym, why not organise regular group workout sessions? These social outings can boost collaboration and teamwork. Seek feedback from your employees about what they’d like to do, and assign a social coordinator to organise weekly or fortnightly activities away from the work environment.
6. Manage noise and interruptions
Coworking environments offer tremendous benefits for driving innovation and collaboration, but noise and boundaries can become issues if not addressed. Be proactive about managing noise and interruptions for your employees. Encourage employees to use noise-cancelling headphones if they’re being distracted by noise.
Ensure there’s sufficient personal space for each staff member, and enforce a culture of respecting boundaries. For example, you can encourage employees to message and check before approaching another team member for a discussion.
7. Allow employees to personalise their workstations
As with any type of workplace, it’s ideal to allow employees to personalise their spaces if possible. Photos, pot plants, cushions, and other personal items can enhance mood and support a positive work culture. Look for other ways to accommodate your employees. For example, if they prefer standing desks or a more comfortable chair, allow them the flexibility to choose.
8. Avoid the set-and-forget approach
Managing an effective team is of course an ongoing process, so don’t forget to monitor your initiatives and keep adjusting processes, set-ups, and tools as required. Think of your coworking space as an ever-changing rather than static workplace.
Explore new ideas by trialing them first, and give your team time to adjust to changes. Be open and flexible to modifying when required, and solicit feedback from employees for their input on how to improve team outcomes.
Build great teams in a coworking space
Coworking spaces can help your team thrive, but keep in mind effective team management is about more than providing a great physical space. Support your team members with the right digital tools and IT infrastructure, and foster a strong company identity. If you leverage the community benefits of coworking spaces and keep adjusting your strategy according to changing needs, you can end up with a thriving team and a high-growth business.
Nexus Smart Hub is the smart way to live and work on the Central Coast. We offer businesses affordable, flexible workspaces as well as a community of potential business partners. To find out more about our high-quality coworking spaces, explore our website or contact us today.