If you're late looking into the whole "coworking" space thing, it's probably time you at least became knowledgable at a surface level, because things are changing fast my friends.
How fast you ask? I offer the following 2 items to illustrate the pace of change in this area and who is absolutely getting rocked.
1. WeWork is about to become the biggest private office tenant in Manhattan. If it leases just another 74,000-square foot office — a typical size for WeWork — it will be bigger than JPMorgan Chase, currently the biggest office occupant in New York’s Manhattan market.
Let that soak in a bit, people. If you need help understanding where this is going, remember Uber. You thought that s**t was weird one time too, didn't you? The fact that WeWork (coworking giant, hater of meat) is set to become the biggest landlord in NYC is crazy.
Here's what that means for you - companies with less than 100 people everywhere are going to hedge their bets and not secure office space - they'd much rather pass the lease risk to providers like WeWork. Get rid of the lease, have your employees work from home and give them a basic WeWork subscription so they stop whining about being at home all the time.
It's only a matter of time until WeWork and it's competitors get deep into all the 50 top markets in the US.
2. Here's another sign that things are a changing my friends. Office Depot is converting some of their space to coworking space. More from Fast Company:
In the latest sign of the ongoing retail apocalypse, Office Depot has been forced to pick up a part-time job.
The company announced today that it is piloting its first-ever coworking space, neatly integrated into its Los Gatos, California, retail location. Yes, that means you can pull up to Office Depot and work alongside real office supplies. It sounds perfect for road warriors who are tired of working in their cars or, you know, anyone priced out of Staples’s coworking space.
While working at an Office Depot sounds like a beige-carpeted version of hell, on the plus side, you’ll never run out of toner and will always be able to find a pen when you need one. How that will stack up against WeWork’s onsite gym, The Wing’s on-demand blowouts, and Servcorp’s private jets is TBD.
The coworking space comes as the company expands its Workonomy platform in a bid to be less reliant on retail revenue. In addition to the new coworking concept, Workonomy also includes services like DIY copying, printing, packing, and shipping as well as a new line of tech-support kiosks that will offer “direct, on-demand access to Office Depot’s technology experts,” and whatever it takes to survive in the current retail landscape.
It's hard to get my head around wanting to go in to an Office Depot and get some work done. But if society is going to convert to coworking spaces, everyone needs a place to go, I guess.
In retail, the masses shop at WalMart. The rich people avoid WalMart.
When eating, the masses go to Applebee's. The rich people avoid Applebee's.
What about coworking? The trendy people will be at WeWork. The professional grade people without a WeWork subscription will still head to Starbucks and feel fine. I'm guessing everyone else goes to Office Depot. Feels like a lot of laid off people are going to end up at Office Depot before they figure it out.
Pictures of Office Depot and WeWork coworking space appear below (in that order) so you can get your head around the class warfare to come in our new world of work.
My favorite part of the Office Depot space is that retirees confused by laptops will browse and peer over at me, like I'm a Lion at the Zoo.
"That's right, retired Boomer. I'm sitting in here and in total control of my laptop, while you can't find help to answer your questions."
Don't you dare ask me for my take on the best laptop. Can't you see I'm coworking? Damn.