Why I’m Sad When a Coworking Space Closes

By Katharine 3 weeks agoNo Comments
Coworking Closure | Alkaloid Networks

Emotional Connections and Memories

When a coworking space closes its doors, it can evoke a sense of sadness and loss. I don’t care if it is a small, indie, community-centric place or a giant, corporate behemoth chain. I still feel the loss of what may have been a vibrant community.

There are emotional connections formed within the halls. Must of us know that coworking has become an essential part of how we all work now. Coworking provides flexibility and a sense of belonging for many professionals. Not to mention, help us feel less alone.

For nine years, I’ve been watching members collaborate, network, and create friendships, it’s no surprise that a closure can leave a void in their lives.

For some, a coworking space may have been the place where they’ve grown their business (heck, I’ve seen member start multiple businesses here), met lifelong friends, or discovered new opportunities. Losing such a place can feel like losing a second home, a support system, or even a part of one’s identity. The closure of these spaces also highlights the broader implications of the pandemic on various industries and businesses. It causes a ripple effect that impacts thousands of people.

Key Takeaways

  • Coworking closures can evoke emotions of sadness and loss due to the connections formed within them.
  • The impact of a closing extends beyond practical implications and touches on personal connections and personal growth experienced within these spaces.
  • Recognizing the broader implications of closures can help shed light on the challenges faced by industries and individuals during these difficult times.

The Personal Impact of Coworking Space Closures

Loss of Daily Routine and Productivity

When a coworking space closes, it can significantly affect your daily routine. You may find yourself struggling to maintain the same level of productivity as before.

Coworking provides a structured environment, which helps foster discipline and focus. I hear it time and time again from members telling me that coming here allows them to be more efficient with work tasks. The absence of this environment makes it more challenging to maintain a consistent schedule.

Consider the following differences:

Coworking SpaceWorking from Home
Set scheduleFlexible hours
Dedicated workspaceShared spaces
Fewer distractionsHousehold distractions

Adjusting to these changes may affect your emotions, making you feel lost or overwhelmed.

Disruption of Community and Networking Opportunities

Coworking offers a unique sense of community. When a space closes, you lose valuable connections and opportunities for collaboration.

By working alongside professionals from various industries, you have the chance to expand your personal and professional networks.

With coworking closures, the list of potential losses includes:

  • Establishing new friendships
  • Meeting potential partners or clients
  • Participating in informative workshops or events

The disruption of this rich community can create feelings of sadness or loneliness, given the importance of human interaction for well-being.

For me, this also held true for the Atlanta Coworking Alliance. I founded the Alliance to support indie spaces around the region. Covid made it incredibly challenging for many to remain open and I watched friends make tough decisions. I felt the lost keenly since I had become friends with the owners and operators of all the participating coworking spaces. 

Coworking Closure | Alkaloid Networks

Emotional Toll and Challenges in Saying Goodbye

Saying goodbye to a place that has become an integral part of your life can be an emotional challenge. All the memories and friendships forged during your time there can make it difficult to let go.

The following thoughts might be going through your mind:

  • Concerns about finding a new workspace
  • Uncertainty about the future
  • Nostalgia for the good times spent 

These emotions are natural responses to change, and it’s essential to give yourself time to process them. Coping with the emotional toll and finding new ways to adapt will help you overcome the challenges of a closure.

Understanding the Broader Implications

The Economic and Professional Shifts

Since coworking has an unique approach to workspaces and a solution to the rise of remote work for many, closure of a local place can certainly be saddening, but it also signals a broader shift in the economy and professional landscape.

One major factor is the increased flexibility in the job market. With more people working remotely and embarking on entrepreneurship, the demand for coworking has grown significantly. Although, not everyone knows the best way to run a coworking community to make it profitable (that includes some well-known, corporate, global brands that shall remain nameless – wink).

Coworking provides workers with affordable offices and desks without the long-term commitment of traditional leases.

The real estate industry has also seen major changes due to this popularity. The closing of a coworking space may indicate fluctuations in the market, impacting both the supply and demand for commercial properties.

Additionally, the coworking community itself plays a critical role in this movement. The sense of belonging and collaborative opportunities in coworking has allowed for shared learning and innovation. Lots of these communities have been affected by external factors like the COVID-19 pandemic (and never recovered), which forced many to work from home and limit their interactions with others.

The Future of Work and Collaboration Beyond Coworking Spaces

Despite the closing of one local coworking space, I remain bullish and recognize that the future of work has evolved beyond these specific locations.

Remote work has already paved the way for more flexible work arrangements and greater acceptance of non-traditional office settings. Think of coworking as a third space.

This shift has encouraged collaboration and networking by enabling people to connect virtually and maintain professional relationships even without a physical space.

Furthermore, workers have adapted to these changes. And companies are reevaluating the need for physical office spaces in a big way. Most are exploring alternative options like virtual offices or shared workspaces for their employees. Every week, I see more and more people coming here as part of an enterprise corporation that provides employees an aggregator option.

By doing this, businesses have the potential to save on real estate costs and even use these funds to enhance employee well-being. One of my regular aggregator members is in charge of corporate-wide properties and he tells me how they are closing offices all over the globe and opting for more flexibility for workers to choose the place they want to go.

While the closing of your current coworking space may feel disheartening, I invite you to embrace the exciting opportunity to discover a vibrant new community just around the corner. At Alkaloid Networks, we pride ourselves on fostering an inclusive and welcoming environment where every member feels right at home from the moment they step through our doors. Our tight-knit community is always eager to welcome new faces and create lasting connections. 

Come experience the difference of a truly supportive and dynamic coworking community – your new home away from home awaits!

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