Co-founder and Director of Paperspace, Narita Cheah, was interviewed on Money FM 89.3 on Monday 4 June, 2018. She spoke about innovation in coworking spaces and why coworking has been gaining traction in workplace design.
Paperspace ventured into the coworking industry with Paperwork, a stylish, modern coworking space focusing on building, nurturing and connecting design connective leaders as a catalyst for innovation.
Having been in the design industry for over 18 years, Narita has seen how workplace demands from companies have changed dramatically. They now require a broad range of expertise requirements – it is no longer enough to focus on one sector. Hence, innovation and flexibility is key.
Co-creation and cross-collaboration facilitates such innovation and flexibility. Paperspace represents 17 studios and over 70 designers. “The knowledge of different designers and studios sets us apart in bringing new ideas to the table,” said Narita. “Innovation is driven and sparked by new conversations with new people.”
When asked if there are concerns of privacy in coworking, with multiple companies working together in the same space, Narita answered, “Not being part of the startup and innovation ecosystem puts business at risk.” She has found that companies often select teams to enter spaces and make use of this coworking environment.
She also discussed big “no-nos” in workplace design, citing fixed desks as one of them.
“It is now about diversity and variety, collaboration, and closed spaces for private conversations,” she said. “People are wanting to be in less formal environments.” Pantry and peripheral spaces are increasingly designed as open event spaces for people to gather and share ideas.
Coworking is especially beneficial to startups and entrepreneurs or leaders due to the presence of a like-minded community.
“You can share burdens with other entrepreneurs – something you can’t do with your employees,” shared Narita. “You’ll find you’re not alone; that you all have common struggles. In a coworking environment, you feel supported by the community and get to have refreshing conversations.”
Narita is certain that coworking is here to stay, and with it brings the added benefit of a better working environment. “The phenomenon of flexible spaces will continue to grow, and with it brings more innovation.” Paperspace is dedicated to being a part of that journey.