One thing is for sure when you set up a new business. However the tides turn and however successful things pan out, you learn A LOT.
I’ve learnt a lot in the first two months of Monday Works, reviewing coworking spaces and zooming with various operators.
But one particular thing has struck me more than anything else, and it’s a common thread amongst the coworking spaces that are making sales at the moment…
They have a clear purpose.
I love this title of David Hiaetts book on purpose:
‘Why brands with a purpose do better and matter more.’
I’ve always believed in the second part of that statement – that workspaces with purpose ‘matter more’. But recently I’ve seen a lot of evidence that they also actually ‘do better’.
A tale of two workspaces
I chatted to a lovely freelancer called Cliff this week. (Not his real name but he sounded like a Cliff). He mentioned he’s been working from home and going a bit stir crazy. The same old story many of us can relate to. When I asked him what local coworking space he was going to join his answer was very telling…
He had looked at two workspaces;
Workspace A; Cliff toured it and was a bit nonplussed. He described it to me as ‘a tad soulless’, as if ‘it felt a bit cold’. Sure the interior furnishings and artwork looked expensive, and everything worked well. But he said ‘if all I’m getting is a desk, the internet and free coffee, then I can get that at home’.
Workspace B; Cliff said it felt like people knew each other there. It had a sense of life to it, and in Cliff’s words ‘I just really liked the vibe there.’
So often, I’ve spoken to people and asked them why they like a particular workspace and, like Cliff, they say things like, ‘I just really like the vibe there.’, or, ‘I’m not sure what it is, but I like the atmosphere.’.
We use words like ‘vibe’ when we can’t quite articulate our reasons, but we know our emotions are driving our thinking. And more important for our discussion here, this shows that our emotions are the core driver behind our buying behaviour.
If you’re still a bit dubious, this retro Simon Sinek vid might convert you. An oldie but a goodie.
As Simon says…
‘Sometimes we can give everyone the facts and figures but they say, I don’t know it just doesn’t feel right.’
The same goes for coworking. People don’t join a coworking space purely based on a set of rational criteria or category benefits. They join because they’ve made a connection with your brand and culture.
Identifying your unique offer to world
It all comes down to this question…
Most workspaces do have a purpose, vision, mission and unique value proposition. But identifying these things is the tricky part. And then trickier still is clearly articulating them, in such a way that will drive members through your front doors.
That’s where we can help.
We work collaboratively with you to identify who it is you’re serving, how you’re uniquely positioned to serve them and what message will connect.
At the start we carry out a team workshop, then during the process we revert back at various stages for feedback and refining.
At the end of it we produce a deck which contains the following:
- Purpose, mission and vision statements
- Brand narrative (short story)
- Customer insights and personas
- Values (operationalised into how we think, act and speak)
- Brand personality (TOV & writing guidelines) & visual (design gestures to develop)
- Customer value proposition and messaging
These last few months have shown me more than ever that the fluffy intangible stuff (brand and culture) directly impacts member experience, occupancy rates, and your bottom line. So it’s important to have a clear and codified brand identity.
I’ve got a short guide that I’d be happy to give away as a freebie. Just click here to download it.
If you’d like to hear more about it, drop me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or give me a call for a friendly chin wag (0207 411 9033).
[PS: Cliff is still working from home, because Workspace B is currently full with a waiting list. Pretty impressive given we’re in the middle of a global pandemic.]