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How have flexible workspaces become business ecosystems of the new normal?

If your workspace is still confined within a simple four-walled concept, you might be missing out on an opportunity of working within a business ecosystem.

3 Jan 2022
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In the early 1990s, American organizational researcher James F. Moore founded the concept of a business ecosystem. As a strategic planning concept, a business ecosystem  comprises of a wide-spanning business network that works together on collaborations that add value to each individual business, creating an evolving relationship between organizations.

The concept was only made more prominent as the world became more connected than before with advanced technology and globalisation which has changed enormously since the 1900s. The benefits of business ecosystems have become more prevalent through articles on the internet as well as information shared via social media and more individuals are now aware of how important it is to build connections in the modern world.

Business ecosystems have also been evolving at a faster rate than before, pushed by the global COVID-19 pandemic when businesses needed to adapt. As a result of the coronavirus crisis, businesses needed to transform quickly and so organizations changed their networking or meetings to be online and relied heavily upon social media to connect and engage with existing or potential business partners, clients and employees..

Today, companies need to be more connected than they were in the 1900s, or even in the early 2000s and so organizations are passionate to establish lasting business networks with partners, clients, employees and even consumers. , Flexible workspaces are a tailored workspace solution that enable companies to connect in a holistic manner, where business growth potential is circulating inherently within a workplace to form a business ecosystem.

Flexible workspaces can introduce:

A network of leaders and talents from a plethora of industries

The core of flexible workspaces is essentially its wide array of tailored workspace solutions for companies to use as an office space, however they are also a powerful gateway to networking opportunities with valuable members from a variety of industries, ensuring individuals to expand their professional network.

The concept of a flexible workspace is designed to unleash the full potential of the social diversity and uniqueness every member from a range of companies, while providing varied options of spaces for them to work at as well as state-of-the-art facilities and amenities. In fact, flexible workspaces are also well-renowned for providing comfortable yet conducive common areas and lounges for their members. These communal spaces do not only encourage members to utilize these areas as an alternative, open space to work, but also to conduct casual meetings or connect with fellow members in a more relaxed atmosphere. Some of these areas can also be spacious enough to conduct members-only events, a highlight of the flexible working culture that helps to keep the community spirit alive.

These member-only events are organized by the internal team with the objective to instil additional value to every member’s professional life. Appealing to leaders, creatives and experts, these events can range from insightful talks from industry experts to creative activities or even games to encourage interaction between members. Taking a tailored approach, flexible workspace providers aim to provide a relaxed business environment and are always interested in collaboration with members.

Over time, such activities will start to revolve around the members’ presence and collectively instil an evergreen business community spirit in every member.

A venue for members to hold their own event

Operators encourage members to utilize the communal areas for their own corporate events as well. Companies have the ability to hold their own events within these communal spaces to achieve their business objectives and are provided with a ready-made event platform integrated within their own workplace with a Customer Service team on hand to provide support, as well as a ready-formed business community adding more value and convenience.

In fact, the reach goes beyond a company’s list of attendees and the community who might be keen to attend. Flexible workspace providers are also more than willing to provide more than just spatial support. Typically, when an event is organized by a community member and held internally, flexible workspace providers can also be engaged for additional coordination support as well as promoting the event around their own network. By leveraging on the additional event promotions created by the flexible workspace operators, companies are able to cast a wider net to better achieve their event attendance targets.

Just like the workspace solutions provided by flexible workspace providers, the event spaces are also likely to have been designed to hold different types of events to complement a sense of professionalism. Should members wish to, it is entirely plausible to conduct a hybrid event within the event space where the audience will be attending the event virtually from their screens. Taking advantage of showcasing presentations on a bigger screen, with sleek aesthetics is definitely the new-normal of online events,  leaving a lasting impression compared to conducting it through a regular virtual conference with a virtual background.

A platform for exposure

Besides having an option to work in a more private environment within a coworking space, the exposure opportunities are huge as besides participating in community events, members are able to achieve a wider reach with the added promotion of their own events. Because of how much flexible workspace providers appreciate the uniqueness of every member, they are also proud to showcase who they are to their social media network and website visitors.

This in turn will help to unveil the value of the flexible workspace and attract new members to expand the ecosystem, creating new networks to connect and fresh business opportunities to explore for the community. At the same time, members will also get to enjoy some publicity about their businesses across various channels.

A gateway to new markets

Many flexible workspace providers feature a range of different spaces globally or regionally, with multiple office spaces in their portfolio. Collaborating with members and featuring them across their own business channels, operators can provide members with the opportunity and support of expanding into other markets overseas or domestically.

As flexible workspace providers reveal the profile of their members on their social media channels, there is more scope for collaboration, partnerships with an increased level of exposure, adding to a business ecosystem virtually as well as physically. In this case, flexible workspace providers would be more than willing to provide bridging support for a networking session to allow members to connect and form relationships . From there on, the journey of nurturing a fresh business collaboration begins.

A place where work and lifestyle intertwine

The COVID-19 pandemic has enforced a blending of personal and professional life thanks to remote working arrangements as well as a transition to operating online. Blending lifestyle into the process of nurturing business relationships has been a common practice for years however, today, flexible workspaces have endeavoured to make it more effective. Not only are flexible workspaces commonly located nearby lifestyle hotspots and facilities, some might have even put together lifestyle amenities of their own such as coffee bars, gyms or even restaurants.

Not only do flexible spaces add to a more convenient lifestyle for members and their clients or partners by having such amenities integrated into a workspace but it also helps to leave a positive impression and sparks an enriching experience for potential partners or talent.

An extensive system that supports hybrid working

Ever since the pandemic has forced employees around the world to work from home, it has also changed the human resource landscape forever. Some employees have seen the perks of what remote working can provide while others have found it difficult to adapt to working in a remote setting.

The truth is, every employee works their best in their own ways, it takes consensus and understanding from every stakeholder and leader to plan on how to work effectively and productively as a team. Flexible workspace providers have realized this fact amidst the pandemic and have developed lease plans that cater to teams who are looking to hop between their own home offices and an optimized workplace from time to time.

 

The integration of all that is required to achieve your goals as a team is certainly a huge part of what is to become the future of work, and business ecosystems are set to become a critical part of the new normal professional standards. With flexible and agile systems in place, companies will also be able to work their best with what is accessible to them, tailored to their professional and personal needs. Workspace providers must work with each and every member to be prepared to adapt to any circumstances that can affect the flow of productivity. With that being said, the future is bright and we look forward to working with businesses to improve the way you work during the new normal in a post-pandemic world.