Alex Hillman answered questions on the future of work.
What does the term ‘coworking’ mean to you specifically?
Coworking has become such a broad term to mean so many different things. It is really just the ability to take a look at how people work together. More specifically, coworking is how they work together when they do not have to. A coworking space provides an opportunity for you to be around people you choose. Trust and relationships come first when it comes to coworking.
How would you describe the development of coworking in Asia?
Alex finds it interesting to hear about regions around the world. They all seem to think they are behind when it comes to progress in the coworking industry. While there are parts that could be considered behind the curve, the acceleration of coworking in the area is important to remember. In some ways, how coworking is being understood is more important than how it is implemented.
With the places he has interacted with in Asia, Alex found that the fundamentals of coworking are adopted quicker. This could be because in a lot of Asian countries, business culture is already very relationship focused.
What do you think is the biggest challenge for the coworking movement worldwide?
There is a lack of delineation across all the different styles of coworking. People in the industry try to pin down coworking to only be one specific thing. However, when something goes mainstream, no one is in control of its narrative. It is impossible to try and define what exactly coworking is. The biggest challenge is to stop trying to define coworking as one specific thing and start defining our own individual versions or styles of coworking.
What type of people does coworking attract?
This questions relates back to the previous one. Different styles of coworking attract different types of people. It is people that attract other people.
What is the importance for people of being part of bigger collective?
It is the most important part of coworking. Coworking is more than just a place to work. Being a part of something bigger is a huge motivator for those involved in the industry. Even if one is not actively contributing to the community, the sense of belonging is huge.
How do you envision the way we work in ten years from now?
The way we work now is one of the best lenses for how people can work in the future. Even in 10 years, most people never have worked and never will work in a coworking space for various reasons. Instead, use coworking spaces to understand patterns and look for things to adopt into other businesses.