Making the move from a quiet, personal office space into a more socially open co-working environment can open so many doors, both personal and professional. However, much like moving to any new environment, there are some changes you may need to look out for, as bad office habits and unknowingly annoying behaviours can be a major cause of workplace conflict amongst your new co-working comrades.
The Gift of Gab
Moving into a diverse mix of people and businesses can be a bit of a shock to your system, especially if you’re accustomed to the drab, basic office life. However, you want to make sure you keep the judgements to yourself. It can be easy to fall into office gossip and shallow chitchat, so be sure to be mindful to stay away from the rumour mill. Meet new people, form your own relationships, and always be aware of the gift of gab that inevitably runs through every office.
Keep It Quiet
Co-working spaces offer such a great social environment, but not everyone is there is to talk. If your specific shared office space is more open concept, be mindful of those working around you. Lunch time laughs and even making personal calls in public areas can still be bothersome to those trying to work. If you have a call to make or have a group social conversation, make sure you’re in an area that it is appropriate, or go grab a cup of coffee and keep the office a little quieter.
Nobody wants to be known as the “dish leaver”. Be sure to cleanup after yourself in both your own areas and the shared regions. Don’t leave mugs in the communal sink, papers on the desks or left over lunch crumbs on the tables. While you’re co-working space may have a cleaning staff, you don’t want to be known as the inconsiderate Pig Pen. If you’re working space is not specifically yours, make sure it’s as clean when you leave as when you arrived. Don’t forget, other businesses don’t want to bring their clients to a space that’s littered with someone else garbage.
Follow The Rules
Moving into a cool, new co-working space can offer some amazing new office perks, especially in the technology department. From 3D printers to top of the line projection screens and board rooms. While you’ll likely have full access to them, it’s important to follow the rules. Much like using a machine at the gym, follow the proper rules and etiquette. Ensure the equipment is available, you’re using it properly, and be sure to have the proper permission before using anything that doesn’t directly belong to you. And as mentioned before, make sure it’s left in the same condition you found it in.
While moving into a new co-working space can help you grow your business and network relationships in a social setting, there are some changes to always keep in mind. While you can have designated section or a full open concept, be mindful that it is still a work environment and be sure to be considerate to those around you, so each business can prosper with productivity.