John Moffett chatted with Jeremy Hansen from Britomart about how Covid-19 is changing the way we work, now and into the future as well as the burgeoning shared workspace market in New Zealand and what that means for Generator.

Check out a few of the highlights below:

There’s been some discussion in the media about shared spaces being harder to control in terms of preventing the spread of the virus. How are you working to counter those concerns?

I think those concerns are absolutely relevant. But our spaces tend to have more space per square metre than your normal corporate office, and there are also multiple spaces you can work from, so if for any reason you felt uncomfortable or unsure about something, there are private offices and breakout areas and a multitude of different spaces. I also think that in terms of elevators and things like that, our elevators only feed our offices, so you’re not getting into an elevator with two or three other people going to different offices, and you know that the place you’re going to and the other people in that space are being managed in terms of hygiene in the same way.

Is the shared space market getting more competitive here?

There is more shared space planned to come into the market over the next year. But New Zealand is still really under-developed in terms of shared space – I think we’re only at about 2 to 3 percent in terms of the total space occupied by shared office space in the CBD, and a normal city is around 5 to 6 percent, sometimes higher, so there’s lots of space for us to grow. Next year we will be celebrating our 10th birthday, and as a local operator we really understand the local market, which is a key differentiator to the competition.

Generator was founded on a presumption that businesses wanted to work differently. How do you think the way we’ve worked during lockdown will change our working habits when it’s over?

I think that we’re in a really good place to assist businesses with the way they work. Working from home, it’s not the best for everybody. I think when people say “working from home”, they just want the option. I think everyone’s nervous about the next three to six months. We’re pretty positive because we can really step out there and say if you need flexibility and want to grow, the best place to do that is when you’re surrounded by other businesses doing the same thing with ability to foster connections and operate in a growth mindset. There’s no need to go and get a lease for six years or spend capital on an office fit out, just turn up and hit the ground running. I think knowing that you have a place to go and work, whether it’s your fulltime office or a flexible space or just meeting rooms, knowing it’s there and you can turn it on and turn it off, I think that’s what people are going to look for.

For the full interview visit our friends BRITOMART