In the era of remote work and increased globalization, flexible workspaces should be a reality – not just a myth. Unfortunately, too many companies still do not understand this concept or have their own modern definition of what a ‘flexible workspace’ entails – essentially propagating the myth that they are already practicing it. Here are five myths about flexible workspaces you probably believe:
1) “Flexible workspace” is another word for “hot desking.”
Hot desks allow employees to use communal office space as they please; however, this does not mean that those spaces can double as an effective place to hold meetings or conduct introvert-focused activities such as phone calls or having contemplative time (i.e., thinking). Simply put, hot desks are not an alternative to private offices – they are just a different approach to the way people use office space.
2) Flexible workspace is for millennials only
While it is true that millennials have driven much of this flexible workspaces trend because of their desire for increased location independence and technological feasibility, older generations can also benefit from these work environments. Think about your own professional needs; perhaps you would like to take advantage of working remotely or need more time focusing without distractions in order to get things done (i.e., introverts). Whatever your needs may be, flexible workspaces allow you to prioritize them while still allowing the company to save money on office space and overhead costs.
3) Business owners and managers do not have to participate in flexible workspaces
It is easy for office managers and executives to see the benefits of allowing employees to work remotely, but they may feel like they will miss out on workplace camaraderie (i.e., social loafing hypothesis) or that their company culture cannot be sustained through digital media alone. However, studies indicate that this is not true; your team can still function seamlessly despite increased location independence and technological capability across the board. Moreover, these spaces allow you to focus even better on your own tasks without distractions from others by eliminating background noise and other common office features such as water coolers and snack areas (although we should note that it’s important to provide spaces where people can congregate and work collaboratively if and when they need to).
4) Flexible workspaces must be open-concept
While this design is popular with millennials and Gen Z, it is not the only way to go about implementing flexible workspaces. Allowing employees privacy with individual offices or semi-private rooms with large windows can still allow them to focus as needed (and may even come with the added benefit of inspiring innovation thanks to exposure to natural light ). Further, having quiet spaces dedicated specifically for phone calls and other introvert-specific needs is important as well. There are many ways you can implement various types of office designs into your company’s new flexible workspace – just don’t expect everyone to perform optimally in an open concept setting without requiring breaks to recharge.
5) Flexible workspaces require a lot of maintenance and oversight
Some companies believe that it is too difficult or time-consuming to maintain all of these flexible spaces for their employees, but this does not have to be the case. Allowing your employees to use their own discretion when choosing where they want to work can minimize waste and allow people with different needs and preferences to coexist in one space without issues (although we would recommend having designated quiet spaces as mentioned previously). Moreover, by identifying what the largest needs are at any given time, you can dedicate resources accordingly; perhaps during lunchtime you set out some snacks and water coolers while other times you offer coffee/tea services as needed. Flexible workspaces are not one-size fits all, but they can be very conducive to improve company productivity if implemented correctly.
We’re debunking some of the most common myths about flexible workspaces. Flexible workspace doesn’t have to mean hot desking or working in a noisy, open-concept environment. In fact, many business owners and managers are happily enjoying the benefits of flexible work without having to change their current setup. If you’re curious about how a flexible workplace could work for your team, give us a call today. Our experts would be happy to chat with you about the possibilities and help get you started on the path to more productivity and creativity.
Are You Ready for Your New Flexible Workspace?
Victory Workspace has been serving professionals in the Walnut Creek, California area for over ten years, bringing together a community of networking professionals to help them grow their business and thrive. We offer a large variety of coworking spaces, short-term office rentals, meeting rooms and a welcoming event space with plenty of free parking for you or your guests. All that while providing our clients with daily opportunities to network with other business-minded professionals just like you! To learn more, set up your free tour or inquire about which one of our services might be right for you, reach out to one of our amazing Community Guides at Victory Workspace for more information.