When it comes to choosing the right coworking space, especially in a large city like New York, it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. Not only are there countless coworking spaces to choose from, but it can be difficult to determine which ones actually work for your specific needs, wants, and desires, and which ones fall short. To make this process easier, here is a list of five ways to make finding the right coworking space simple, straightforward, and pleasant.
1. Do Your Research — One of the first things that you should do when looking for the right coworking space is to get online and start doing some research. Check out websites of coworking spaces in your desired location, as well as reviews from current and previous members. You can tell a lot about a space by reviewing customer feedback and photos. Doing your research will give you insight into what each coworking space is really all about, and get you that much closer to making a decision. With the variety of spaces available, you’ll want to select the right one for you — whether you need dedicated space versus a hot desk or lounge area, for example. You’ll want to identify the amenities that are important to you. Consider wifi, seating arrangements, beverages, snacks, meeting space, quiet areas, reception, printing and so forth. Not all of these are important to everyone, and not all spaces are created equal. The same goes for the “vibe” of the space. Is it for professionals or more casual and laid back? Is it loud, collaborative and busy, or quiet and private? Is it good for networking to build your book of business and personal brand?
2. Take A Tour — The great thing about many coworking spaces in NYC is that they offer free tours to prospective members. So, make sure you take advantage of this and go on as many tours as possible. By doing so, you will be able to see each space up close and personal, and you will also be able to get a feel of the staff and current members in each space. It’s a great way to get a glimpse of the vibe and sample the amenities.
3. Ask Questions — Either on the phone, through email or instant message; or when you are on your tour, make sure to ask the staff a lot of questions. The questions you ask should pertain to your specific needs and wants such as: “what are your membership options”, “what time are you open until”, “are you open on the weekends”, and so on and so forth. By asking a lot of questions, you will develop a clearer idea of which coworking space suits you best.
4. Compare and Contrast — Once you have completed your research and a few tours, compare and contrast your favorite spaces. Make sure to write down the top features of each space and their perceived drawbacks. Maybe one is too loud or there’s no free coffee; maybe one has great meeting spaces and another is conveniently located. Doing this will organize all of the thoughts you have buzzing around in your head, and help you make a better decision as to which coworking space is right for you.
5. Try It Out — The last step to finding the right coworking space is to try one out for yourself. The majority of coworking spaces in NYC have a free trial period where prospective members can come and not only check out the space, but can work as well. These free trial periods can last one day up to a week. KettleSpace, for example, is a great coworking space that currently offers a one week free trial period, while other networks of coworking space may let you purchase a day pass. So, make sure to take advantage of these trial periods before committing, and you’ll be well on your way to happy coworking in the space that meets your needs.