In 14 years Silversquare has multiplied its square meters by 100: today 11 coworking centers total 52,000 m2 and welcome more than 4500 members and 62 people in the Silversquare Dream Team. This strong growth has been marked by innovations: architecturally of course, but also behind the scenes. Based on a horizontal organization and a collaborative model, the coworking team has recently rethought the organization of the operational teams in order to focus even more on its core business: hospitality.
A need to rethink the operational organization in depth
"In 2021, we observed signs of fatigue among our employees," explains Alexandre Ponchon, co-founder of Silversquare. "When an organization notices these kinds of signals, it can't ignore them. So we brought in an external auditor to talk to each team member.
These interviews revealed that our teams faced two recurring challenges: a sense of isolation from the rest of the team and too many different roles assigned to each person.
These points were amplified by the health crisis (absences of team members) but also by the implementation of laws and governmental directives generating administrative burdens (compliance, digitalization... without added value for our members).
The strong growth of Silversquare and its geographical spread have also reinforced the need to reinvent the organization.
The playing field is widening, tasks are being refocused
The 7 QS in Brussels are now organized in 2 clusters: North and South. The operational staff moves from one coworking to the other (within its cluster) and the community manager is the permanent referent of his coworking.
The objective of this new organization is to focus on the essence of Silversquare's business: service to members.
Until now, each employee of a local team managed independently all the tasks of his coworking: a rich and varied function. Basically, everyone did everything.
Today, roles are assigned according to each person's skills and wishes and pooled within a cluster, increasing efficiency and work flow.
"The work of each person in the team will be dedicated for 2/3 of their time to their preferred field (admin, sales, etc.) and 1/3 of their time to reception and hospitality", explains Margaux Vandenbossche, operational manager. "This organization induces a more efficient division of labor by skills, thus improving the well-being of employees and making them more available to members."
The redesign of the organization is designed by the teams, for the teams
"SQ is a collaborative company: we created a representative work group under the leadership of a facilitator, a change management specialist," explains Alexandre Ponchon
"During a series of workshops, we "kneaded" this new organization together. We started with the need to put our members at the heart of our system. We therefore sought to relieve the local teams so that they could focus more on Hospitality."
Once 3 people worked for a coworking space, now 9 people work for a cluster.
The community manager becomes the cornerstone of coworking: he is permanently based in the dedicated space, focuses on welcoming members, managing the space and animating the community. The other team members are mobile and specialized according to their field of expertise.
An organization dedicated to community service
First of all, performance and staff well-being go hand in hand. By allowing everyone to focus on dedicated tasks, the teams are more efficient, more serene and more attentive to the members.
The new organization allows us to refocus on our core business: Hospitality. Members will be better supported in their growth and the problems they encounter.
Certain silos have been broken down and the coworking spaces have been opened up to the wider community of the cluster: itinerancy and the creation of links are facilitated.
As a result, it is easy to create cross-working events(!). The cluster favors the mixing of coworkers and widens the networking opportunities.
This transformation puts the creation of links at the heart of the coworking business. It is the image of Silversquare: innovative, focused on people, fluidity and agility. These qualities are essential for the future, especially since Silversquare coworking spaces are now more and more popular with a new type of customer: medium and large companies. These companies bring new openings and opportunities to create links for all.
2 clusters in Brussels
The South cluster includes Silversquare Louise, Stéphanie, Bailli & Delta.
A team of 13 people.
- Community Manager: dedicated on a daily basis.
Zoë, Sophie, Valerian, Anaïs & Marie
- Business managers: they find the right office solutions for each member and answer questions about contracts. Aurélie, Caroline & Pablo.
- The admin managers: responsible for the administration of all the coworking spaces in the cluster. Géraldine, Lucy & Sarah
- Venue Managers: booking of meeting rooms, advice, organisation, catering). Mathilde
- Cluster Leader. Marie
The North cluster includes Silversquare Europe, Central, North
A team of 9 people
- Community Managers: Natalia, Lorraine & Charlotte
- Les Business managers: Thibaut & Alexandra
- Les admins: Charlotte & Loïc
- Venue Manager: Clément
- Cluster leader: Axelle
Article written by Muriel Van Severen