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Coworking Spain: Operator Insights in One Infographic

Helga Moreno
Helga Moreno
Coworking Spain: Operator Insights in One Infographic

The Spacebring team just got back from CWSC24 in Madrid. Beyond the buzz, we had a specific mission: to chat with over 100 amazing coworking space operators from Spain and beyond.

We were curious about their day-to-day experiences. What challenges do they face? What strategies work best? What makes their spaces thrive?

So, we conducted a survey to gather their insights and compiled the results into an infographic that dives deep into the nitty-gritty of managing a coworking space. 

Ready to learn from the best? Head below to check out the infographic and see what your fellow operators are saying. We think you'll find some valuable takeaways to help you grow and improve your own space!

Meet the Masterminds: Who Took Our Coworking Operator Survey?

Let's meet the fantastic people who shared their insights with us.

1. Location, Location, Location!

Our survey reached a diverse group of operators in terms of location management. Around 52% run a single, thriving space. Think of them as the local coworking champions, building strong communities within their walls.

Others (27%) have built what we might call "mini coworking empires," overseeing 2-5 locations. Imagine the juggle of managing multiple coworking hubs—the energy must be incredible! A slightly smaller group, around 20%, operates bustling spaces with over 5 locations. These folks are clearly coworking rockstars, tackling the complexities of running large-scale spaces across multiple locations.

2. New Faces, Seasoned Veterans, and a Wealth of Knowledge

We were excited to hear from a few folks, 5%, who are just starting their coworking journeys. Their fresh perspectives and innovative ideas are a breath of air in the industry.

The bigger part of respondents (15%), however, have been in the game for 1-3 years. They bring valuable experience to the table, having navigated the initial challenges and learned the ropes of running a coworking space.

But the real wisdom comes from the seasoned veterans! A whopping 80% of participants have been running their spaces for over 3 years. This group offers a wealth of knowledge gained from facing and overcoming various obstacles over the years.

3. Building Communities of All Sizes

The survey results reflect the diverse nature of coworking spaces. Half of the operators, 52%, cater to cozy communities of less than 100 members.  These spaces foster a close-knit environment, offering a sense of belonging and collaboration among members.

Others (25%) manage medium-sized spaces with 100-500 members. These spaces create a vibrant mix of entrepreneurs and hustlers, buzzing with creative energy and a dynamic atmosphere.

And a select few, 22%, oversee coworking giants with over 500 members. Imagine the energy in those spaces! These operators are masters at scaling their businesses while maintaining a sense of community and providing exceptional service to a large number of members.

Coworking Spain industry infographic

The Coworking Struggle is Real: Unveiling Operator Challenges

Running a coworking space might seem like a dream come true—surrounded by creative energy, fostering a community of hustlers. But our survey revealed that behind the beanbag chairs and free coffee, there are some real challenges operators face every day.

1. The Big Three: Marketing, Money, and Making Connections

Three hurdles emerged as the most common battles for coworking space operators: marketing (34%), finances (21%), and community building (21%). All three were mentioned most frequently by respondents, which means these are top-of-mind struggles.

  • Financial Fitness: Keeping the books balanced isn't always easy. Managing operational costs, pricing strategies, and member occupancy rates are all crucial aspects of financial health in a coworking space. Finding the right balance between affordability and profitability can be a juggling act.
  • Building a Buzz: A vibrant and engaged community is the heart and soul of any coworking space. Operators need to be community champions, fostering connections between members, organizing events, and cultivating a sense of belonging. Think of it as creating a space where people want to work, not just have a desk.
  • Tech Troubles and Beyond: While less frequent, technology (17%) and other miscellaneous challenges (7%) also popped up on the radar. Technology can be a double-edged sword. The right software can streamline operations, but choosing and implementing the right tools can be a challenge in itself.

2. Stress Levels: From Zen to Send Help!

Running a coworking space can be demanding, and the survey results showed a range of stress levels among operators. A lucky few (around 5%) reported feeling zen, but the majority (around 63%) fell in the moderate stress range (levels 2-3). Let's be honest, building a business from the ground up is no walk in the park. A significant portion (around 30%) reported experiencing higher stress levels (levels 4-5). Interestingly, while our survey only offered stress levels from 1 to 5, 2% of operators went above and beyond, specifying their stress level as a whopping 10

If you're an operator feeling the heat, take a deep breath—you're not alone!

3. Software Savvy or Stepping Stone?

The good news is that the vast majority of operators (75%) use software to manage their coworking spaces. This software serves various purposes, with coworking space management software being the most popular choice (mentioned by 47% of respondents).

Coworking Chaos Got You Down? Discover Peace with Spacebring.

4. A Toolbox of Solutions

The survey revealed a diverse range of software used by operators. This "toolbox" includes solutions for everything from member management and access control to communication and marketing. The key takeaway? Finding the right software solutions can address specific needs and challenges, making your life as an operator a little bit easier.

The Silent Winner: Why a Dedicated Quiet Zone with Nap Pods Might Be the Secret Weapon

Our survey revealed some surprising favorites when it comes to member perks. While free-flowing coffee (15%) and social gatherings (62%) were popular choices, a quieter option emerged as a potential dark horse: a dedicated quiet zone with nap pods (mentioned by 12% of respondents).

This might seem like a niche perk, but for a specific group of members, it could be a game-changer. Here's why:

  • Focus Warriors: For those who thrive in quiet environments and need to concentrate on deep work, a dedicated quiet zone offers a sanctuary from the usual coworking buzz. Imagine being able to dive into a project without distractions, maximizing productivity.
  • Power Nap Champs: Let's face it, sometimes a midday power nap can be the ultimate productivity booster. A nap pod provides a private space to catch some quick Zzz's, allowing members to recharge and return to their work feeling refreshed and revitalized.
  • Introvert Oasis:  For introverts or those who simply need a break from social interaction, a quiet zone offers a space to decompress and avoid feeling overstimulated.

While not every member might crave a nap pod, it can be an incredibly valuable perk for those who do. It demonstrates that the coworking space understands the diverse needs of its members and caters to a variety of working styles.

So, the next time you're brainstorming member perks, don't underestimate the power of peace and quiet. A dedicated quiet zone with nap pods might just be the secret weapon that attracts and retains focus-driven and nap-enthusiastic members to your coworking space.

Coworking Confessions: Behind the Scenes of Running a Space

Our survey went beyond just the challenges—we wanted to capture the true essence of what it's like to run a coworking space. The responses were a fascinating mix, revealing the emotional rollercoaster operators experience on a daily basis.

1. The Joyful Juggle

Many operators described their experience with positive and energetic terms—awesomeness, fun, happiness, a roller coaster, adventure, teen spirit, and a dream job. It seems that the fast-paced environment, the opportunity to build a vibrant community, and the chance to make a positive impact are incredibly rewarding aspects of the job.

2. The Responsibility Ring

However, running a coworking space isn't all sunshine and rainbows. Operators also used words like challenging, growing, stressful, multitasking, hurry, stressed, and many responsibilities.  Managing a space requires juggling a lot—finances, member needs, unexpected hiccups—which can be demanding and pressure-filled.

3. From Firefighters to Family Leaders

The survey responses used some interesting metaphors to describe the role of a coworking space operator. Some compared it to being a firefighter, a circus, a kindergarten, or a beehive master. These comparisons highlight the variety of tasks operators handle—from putting out metaphorical fires to nurturing a thriving community.

4. The Social Magician

Perhaps the most intriguing term used was "social magician."  This aptly describes the ability operators need to foster connections, create a sense of belonging, and keep a diverse group of members happy and engaged.

Here's the Takeaway: You Don't Have to Go It Alone!

Our survey shed light on some common pain points, but many can be easily avoided with the help of coworking space management software.

Ready to make managing your coworking space a breeze? Schedule a demo call with our product expert to discuss how our software can empower you to focus on what matters most—building a thriving community!

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