We will be debuting our own coworking space in October 2019. In the meantime, we’re working on curating a space that is welcome to our future members and users – just have a look at our #RebuildingStories. This space should not just inspire innovation and collaboration, but also be a place of safety and productivity. Here I’ll share some of the insights we’ve gained on coworking spaces (so far).

While everyone is outside sweating under the sun, our team of architects and interior designers are busy setting up our beautiful coworking space in our Dreispitz location. The following few paragraphs will outline some of the key features of coworking spaces, as well as how we’re going to enact these at IH Basel.

Although relatively obvious, one of the main benefits of a coworking space, versus a home office, is the social atmosphere. Some of the most creative ideas can be generated while making coffee for z’Nüni and z’Vieri, when you step away from your desk and screen. We want to take advantage of that, so we are offering access to dedicated social spaces and a kitchenette. With this social (and probably also caffeine) boost, we expect our members to be re-energized and motivated. As well, these areas are free spaces to ideate, discuss, and develop ideas further and more effectively than if done in isolation.

Collaboration is key to us – it is central to our approach as an Impact Hub and even in our co-manifesto. Coworking spaces should allow for a flow of idea generation and feedback opportunities, and we are looking into fun ways to incorporate these in daily (or weekly) sharing sessions. Who knows, a member might find another member dealing with similar struggles to their own, with whom he or she can navigate hurdles. Or even better, he or she might meet someone who already solved the current issue, from whom he or she can learn. Developing these relationships might be the kick-start a member needs to reach a new personal or professional milestone.

Collaboration also needs a vibrant and involved community – we already try to facilitate this with our monthly events, that will continue in one form or another. These events are great times to network, crowdsource opinions, and form partnerships. We are so proud of our already diverse and dynamic community, and hope it grows along with our space. And most importantly, we want our community to feel a part of the coworking space – our successes are their successes.

Personalization is also essential to feeling comfortable and productive in a coworking space. Whether it is bringing a special coffee mug from home or finding the perfect chair. We offer a fixed desk option in our Resident Membership Package, which allows for more direct customization, but there are definitely additional ways to feel welcomed. We will offer exciting introductory events and get-togethers to make sure that new members feel as connected to our space as old-timers.

Lastly, outside of typical amenities available, we are concerned with security, making lockers, individual access keys, and pass controls available. While less sexy to discuss than our offer of networking events, we want to create a space that feels safe – as safe to leave your desk to go to lunch as to innovate and further your business.

Your input is definitely welcome throughout this process. Feel free to send us your thoughts on coworking, and any potential features you would like to see in our new coworking space. We’re looking to create and innovate with our community, and can’t wait for the space to open!

Caroline Steiblin

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