The Biggest Takeaway From the GWA Conference In Vegas

In May this year, Allwork.Space published an article titled “Coworking: No Longer Synonymous With Open Space.”

Just a few weeks ago during the GWA Conference, we experienced first hand the truth behind Allwork’s statement. But we also reached an even more significant conclusion:

Coworking is the new term that everyone is using to refer to any type of shared workspace, regardless of whether it is a business center, an executive suite, an incubator, an accelerator, open space, or private space.

Believe it or not, this is good news.

Traditional business center operators and private office providers rejoice; you get to take advantage of the SEO benefits that come with coworking.

But, wait a minute — when did the definition of coworking change?

In our opinion, the definition hasn’t changed, however how the term coworking is perceived seems to have shifted internally within the shared workspace industry as a whole.  Though we can’t give you an exact timeframe, this shift in how coworking is perceived took place when people started to realize that coworking is more about the culture within the shared workspace environment than it is about the layout of the space. Think of it this way: together, the industry has fine-tuned what coworking is.

Again, the essence of coworking has remained the same: to foster a community made up of various professionals from various industries.

Business centers and executive suites have been doing this for a long time. So don’t feel left out, don’t feel outdated. You are as much a coworking space as any that offers hot-desking options.

Coworking has evolved, and this evolution has brought about many different styles or models of coworking. Simply look at two of the major coworking operators, WeWork and Industrious. Those who have been inside their locations know that they offer a hybrid model approach to coworking, one where they offer private space, open space, and meeting rooms.

It’s balance. It’s our industry’s sweet point. It’s coworking.

But why coworking? Why not business center or shared workspace?

Well, the market chose it to be so. There could be a plethora of reasons why ‘coworking’ is the keyword that people are searching the most for online. Maybe it’s because it’s shorter, maybe it’s because it makes people think of collaboration, or maybe it’s because it sounds cool.

In the end, we’re glad to put an end to the misconception that coworking means only open space and hot-desking options. The coworking industry has a lot to offer, and it’s time people acknowledge that.

So, don’t be put off by others calling your executive suite center coworking, as this is a good thing. It means you’re fostering community, you’re building a culture, you’re offering more than simply a physical workspace.