Collaboration-events tend to be most effective when certain conditions promoting creative working have been met. That’s why many companies choose a so-called off-location away from the familiarity of their usual workspace. Although co-working spaces don’t exactly fall into the off-location category, they can still provide the ideal setting for creative working at team events. We dug a little deeper and took a closer look.
An off-location was originally defined by its lack of facilities and equipment. For example, a traditional off-location could be an empty warehouse or a public open area. Nowadays certain locations not traditionally used for these events may be added to that list: Apartments, clubs, bowling alleys, libraries – as long as, they provide an unfamiliar context.
Finding the perfect off-location: Not as easy as you might think
There is still one thing both traditional and modern off-locations have in common: They’re absolute insider secrets. Usually these places don’t openly advertise that they’re available for events. Sometimes a little bit of luck and a lot of convincing is necessary – not everyone wants to host out-of-context get-togethers. That’s why finding the perfect off-location for your next collaboration-event shouldn’t be taken for granted.
Co-working spaces on the other hand tend to be accepted more readily. After all, they represent creativity as well as a flexible and team-oriented style of work.
Co-Working Spaces: Agility at the core, creativity in focus
Co-working spaces aren’t your traditional off-location, yet still offer everything needed for collaboration-events to function. In fact co-working spaces share a similar infrastructure with most of the companies out there: Conference rooms for presentations, sufficient work space and more often than not a designated area with coffee and refreshments. Nothing stands in the way of efficient and productive sessions for participants in all types of groups and formats.
It’s all about the pleasantly creative atmosphere. Many different kinds of people with all kinds of careers collide in these settings. The resulting diversity becomes an automatic catalyst for constructive collaboration. On top of that: Since there aren’t any assigned work spaces, everyone is constantly on the move. People come and go making it hard for group structures to set in. This way the atmosphere remains unforced while the mind stays flexible. Design and esthetics are key factors during the setup of co-working spaces. Functional? Yes, please – but please make sure it looks nice, too! Especially during collaboration-events, where creativity is key.
Collaboration-events? Sure, but nothing too big!
Co-working spaces as off-locations tend to be better suited for smaller collaboration-events. At some point it would simply be too crowded. After all everyone still needs room to get some work done. To stay on the safe side you should invite only as many people as the available conference room of your co-working space can hold. After that you and the space provider can discuss if and how to utilize the remainder of the rooms – for different collaboration stations, for example.
In conclusion: Co-working spaces launch participants into a diametrically opposite version of their usual company structure in which they will work for up to several days at a time. In other words they will experience a paradigm shift: Away from regulated structures with familiar surroundings and assigned seating and into an agile environment where each day provides completely new challenges. This promotes creativity, is tons of fun – and leads to a successful event.
Check out the following examples of nice co-working spaces which not only offer everything needed to get your work done but can also be considered eye candy:
Last but not least, here are some interesting off-locations:
image-top: © Ahoy, Berlin / image-middle: © Event Inc (Basecamp Hamburg)