Millennials, those born around the mid-1980s to the early 2000s, are a much-discussed group. They are a generation whose habits and attitudes have been shaped by the digital revolution. Millennials are the most diverse, tolerant, and well-educated generation in history. Their tastes and habits are much different than previous generations, and they now make up the largest demographic in the Canadian and American workforce.
Millennials generally speaking enjoy flattened hierarchies, communal spaces, working remotely, working in shared spaces, mentorship, feedback, and feeling like they are part of a team that shares their values. Millennials are known to reject traditional structures, particularly with regards to space; they enjoy work-life balance but also working from home or making the office feel more homely/like a community.
Highly-educated and risking underemployment, many millennials begin or choose to work for smaller start-up firms where they feel they can grow and have work they feel is purposeful to them.
Co-working, or shared office space, is experiencing a boom, partly thanks to rising interest among millennials.
Why do millennials love co-working spaces?
Millennials want to feel invigorated by an environment full of enthusiastic people working on their passion projects.
Millennials also entered adulthood at a time of increasing rents in virtually every major city in the Western world (Toronto and Vancouver being particularly unaffordable). For this generation, sacrificing space and privacy in order to be in a prime location in a vibrant community is a no-brainer.
Co-working spaces can offer workshops, mentorship programs for young workers, and social events; these can help create a sense of community and collective learning which millennial workers really value.
Millennials are also hyper-social. Having grown up with social media as a constant presence in their lives, this group loves to network. Co-working spaces can offer the best networking experiences as people working on different organizations can build rapport and deep connections in a shared workspace. Face-to-face conversations provide a kind of networking that technology still can’t.
Whereas many freelancers may choose to work at Starbucks, co-working spaces are actually quite quiet and they can provide a less noisy place where you can still socialize with other people while being productive. Many Co-working space will have amenities included and therefore can help freelancers cut down on coffee and administrative expenses. Furthermore, co-working spaces can offer freelancers a professional place to meet with clients at an affordable price.
The world of work is changing as fast as the technology around us, and new generations have accordingly revolutionized how we think about our second home (the office). With co-working, your second home can feel like a community that is a second home.