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“Good conversation is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after.” I don’t know about you, but I love a good quote. A catchy phrase or a few choice words can certainly improve your mood. But even if you prefer a latte, it’s hard to deny the power of a stimulating conversation.

We all know that good communication is an integral element to business success. Studies have shown that when a workplace focuses on good communication there is an increase in productivity and employee engagement. There is something empowering about a productive meeting. A room buzzing with activity, the gentle hum of constant chatter as thoughts are shared and problems solved. From one on one meetings and company gatherings to motivational letter boards, we are surrounded by the spoken and written word on a daily basis.

But could the recent global pandemic have highlighted the true value of not only words, but more crucially, positive words?

Touch has long been regarded as the most profound of connections. Even in the workplace touch is used for validation, celebration and general interaction, but Covid-19 has changed the way we live our lives. Social distancing is here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future. When we eventually return, the work environment will look very different. No more hugs, high fives, fist bumps, back pats or shoulder squeezes. Even everyone’s favorite ‘air kiss’ is a thing of the past.

But these ingrained habits are popular for a reason. They trigger the endorphin system in our brains and leave us feeling warm and positive. Human contact helps create a sense of comfort and well-being. In the absence of this, we have words. Moving forward we will need to verbalize a lot more things that we would normally express with touch.

At the beginning of a meeting, instead of slapping a few backs and shaking a few hands before getting down to business, we will rely on eye contact and a warm greeting. Thankfully, science has proven that positive words can actually strengthen our brain’s frontal lobe. A study where individuals read words of ‘loving kindness’ showed increases in self-compassion, mood elevation and reduced anxiety, while scientific research has shown that motivational quotes can make us feel the same as actually accomplishing something. And it’s not just us. Even the office plants benefit from positive words. In a study performed by the Royal Horticultural Society, researchers discovered that talking nicely to your plants helps them to grow faster!

Our ‘new normal’ won’t feel normal to begin with, but words and language used positively within companies, or by individuals working together, can impact morale and motivation, boost confidence and enhance performance. Positive reinforcement isn’t a new concept, but now more than ever, is the time for us to be proactive about creating small moments of happiness in our days. The way we interact with one another has been irrevocably altered. But while face masks and distancing will change the workplace landscape it doesn’t have to be negative. Whether it’s an encouraging comment in the corridor or an inspirational pick-me-up on a letter board, positive words really can make a difference and enable us to thrive.

These anxious and unusual times will bring unforeseen difficulties and while we can’t deny the need for positive communication, for those of us – like me – who will miss air kisses and fist bumps there is a socially distanced alternative. The Vulcan salute, will have to do for now. It worked well for Spock. Live long and prosper.

Mental health is one of the most important aspects of being able to succeed in business.

The workspace you choose to conduct your business is one of the most important decisions you can make.

There’s something special about a coworking space. The sound of quiet chatter, the hum of the coffee machine, the tap-tap-tap of fingers on the keys of a computer. Different companies, different industries and different freelancers working autonomously or collaboratively, but all sharing the same unique space.

Studies show that between 75% and 90% of coworkers love the personal connections that coworking makes possible. While statistics reveal that around 3.1 million people are currently using coworking spaces around the world. With this number estimated to grow to over 5 million in the next few years, it signifies more than just a trend, but a significant change in workplace culture.

Remember the classic sitcoms from the 80’s? Colleagues from a fictitious company would huddle around the water cooler gossiping about the interpersonal relationships of their fellow employees, or plotting their next move up the proverbial corporate ladder, before returning to their cubicle farm of desks to hammer away at their computers. The moment 5pm hit, they would clock off and head to the closest bar to continue the conversation. If you think it sounds amusing, you’re right. You just have to look past the 80’s dress sense.

But the office buildings of the 80’s and 90’s are disappearing. More and more people are moving away from the constraints of a typical office environment. According to recent research, only 6% of workers in the UK adhere to traditional working hours and they’re not alone.

The Future is Flexible.

Flexible hours, flexible work spaces, flexible bosses. Companies big and small are now part of the global economy. Modern technology means these companies are able to hire talent on-demand and these employees are able to work from anywhere. The rising remote work revolution has certainly meant more flexibility, but it has also left many employees isolated. Working remotely means that your colleague is no longer a few desks away. While the traditional job landscape is changing, one thing remains the same, the need for connection.

Connection is Vital

We’re all aware that connection is vital. Not just between employers and employees or co-workers, but between people. Being connected to others is important for our mental health and physical wellbeing and has been proven to improve our overall happiness. And happy people are more productive people.

Happy people collaborate more effectively, knowledge share more openly and put more time into nurturing workplace relationships. The corporate world is modernising and coworking spaces ensure the connection we crave isn’t lost. With lounge areas, hot desks, glass-walled private offices, write-on-the-wall meeting rooms, an abundance of greenery and a slew of inspirational quotes dotted around, coworking spaces not only bring people together, they promote productivity.

Rise of the Coworking Space

The popularity of the coworking space is showing no signs of slowing. Businesses and individuals are revelling in the constant supply of networking opportunities and the ability to foster new business contacts. They can collaborate with like-minded professionals in a modern upbeat environment that is highly motivating. With the annual Global Coworking UnConference reinforces the values to which the coworking movement aspires, including community, collaboration, learning, and sustainability. It’s no surprise the popularity of the coworking space is on the rise.

Dolly Parton knew long before the rest of us that working nine to five was no way to make a living. With 24 hour access, coworking spaces give us the flexibility to work when we want and the wellness and work-life balance to keep us happy. What could be better than that……

To explore the opportunities available for coworking and flexible space for your company, get in touch with us here.

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