Goodbye cubicles, hello hubs Reply

by Devayani Bodas

The co-working space: a shared working environment. Photograph by Impact Hub used here under Creative Commons licence.

The co-working space: a shared working environment. Photograph by Impact Hub used here under Creative Commons licence.

If you have ever worked for a corporation, you will be familiar with the small, tight and often uncomfortable space that is the office cubicle. However, in recent years this scene is changing, with more and more businesses opting to work from co-working spaces like The Hub Sydney.

A co-working space is essentially a shared working environment where people from different disciplines work from the same place.

The Hub Sydney, which attracts different business disciplines, first opened its doors last May and is part of a larger global franchise. For the cost of a membership fee of a minimum $220, Hub members have access to desk spaces, meeting rooms, fast wi-fi and discounted learning workshops. Members mostly consist of freelancers and small business teams.

The Hub is not the first of its kind; other companies such as Vibewire, Fishburners and Secret Space also offer co-working spaces. There are many reasons why the popularity of co-working has dramatically risen.

“It makes it more professional to meet with clients in a corporate environment rather than having meetings in cafès,” says Natasha Akib, a member of the Vibewire Board.

For others such as Max Chalmers, who has worked from The Hub in the past, says, “It’s a useful place to work because of its proximity to the city and because it is affordable.”

The Hub is now one of the largest co-working franchises in Australia. Having reached a milestone of 1000 members, it is looking to expand even further, according to Andrew Duong, of The Hub Sydney.

“We are already at the stage of adding another level to our building, which means The Hub will occupy both levels one and two of 101 William Street. It is growing physically as well, with a Hub recently opening in Adelaide, ” he says.

Each Hub has a ‘space host’, such as Andrew, who looks after the needs of Hub members and manages the Hub’s internal events.

Andrew says that creating a sense of community is really important for a successful co-working space. One way to encourage this community building is with mixed bag lunches. Every Thursday, Hub members are encouraged to make a contribution to a communal lunch. The purpose is to encourage networking so that members get to know what projects other Hub members are currently involved in.

Furniture such as desks without barricades, chalkboards, table tennis tables, and comfortable couches designed by Hassell Studios to complement creative thinking, is also significant to the Hub. Hub members also have access to interesting workshops and activities throughout the week such as yoga classes on Wednesdays.

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