Since Brad set up his original office, coworking has evolved to thrive in many shapes and forms, which has meant its meaning has become more ambiguous over time. As a result, answering the question of what coworking is isn’t simple as it first seems. For example, coworking is different from the concept and history of the more commercially evolved Serviced Office Space.
A Serviced Office is an office or office building that is designed for workers, and fully equipped and managed by a facility management company, which then rents the individual offices or floors to other companies. It emerged as a business service across US markets in the 1980’s. Companies offering serviced offices are generally able to offer more flexible rental terms than a conventional leased office space [so you can expand or contract at short notice], which will usually come with restrictive leases and some pretty hefty expense costs like furnishing and equipment. Serviced offices are also referred to as managed offices, business centres, executive suites or executive centres, and can be found in business districts of large cities all over the world.
Serviced office providers are often set up so that tenants can share reception services, business machines and other resources, providing reduced costs and access to equipment, which might otherwise be unaffordable for them. They tend to be unbranded spaces purely there to deliver the basics of operational requirements.
What has evolved here at Generator is a highly effective hybrid. Coworking in a fully serviced space. Known variously as Coworking, Shared Space, Office Services or Flexible Business Office Solutions, the tricky nature of naming reflects its position at the front end of the innovation curve. Whatever you choose to call them, values and culture are their heart – a philosophical way of being in the world of work.