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Apart from being able to confidently define oneself, there is measureless value for a space operator to conduct a personalized study about their community. Insight into a community’s collective ‘mind’ can affirm whether efforts to build and improve are heading in the right direction. For the Hub Melbourne, this meant setting goals that reflect the wont of members.

‘We’re going from breadth to depth,’ said Brad. ‘We have a rhythm in the Hub Melbourne, we work in trimesters, where we set three goals for the community. Last trimester we had ‘100 members in 100 days’. This one is '101 awesome acts to make the Hub more epic'. But these goals are not for the core team, they’re for the community.’

Any coworking space could undertake a similar project, but resources are required if it is to be truly representative and constantly updated.

‘(The project) was properly funded. (Julian) came on board to interview members and collect and sort the responses. Not all 650 members were interviewed, but a large proportion were, enough that the results are reflective and statistically significant,’ said Brad.

Julian was a perfect fit for such a project thanks to his deep-seated interest in the Hub culture and philosophy. As a freelance consultant, he has worked on some of the Hub initiatives in Latin America, and has been a member of Hub Melbourne since only two months following its opening.

Actively engaging an enthusiastic member like Julian is an innovative example of how Hub Melbourne can continue to work for its members, something a coworking space should strive for at all stages of development.

It is a reminder that a coworking space operator should not aim to be a landscaper, selecting and arranging features to create a contrived environment, but rather a master cartographer, charting the diverse and textured terrain of their own space, documenting it’s richness and ever-changing environment.

For a coworking space operator, questions like, “what is your space?’ and ‘where is it going?’ are important. But the responses should not come from the core team. Those in the best position to answer these questions are the people who make the space. Only then will coworking space operators be in a position to better serve their community, and ultimately achieve the best version of their space that they can - at any given time.

The Prezi, with an introduction by Brad, can be found here.

Connect with Julian Waters-Lynch via twitter.

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