Cool offices: Weaving life and business together

Office trends of late have companies trying to make their workplaces more hip. While throwing bean bags here and there might suffice for some places, The Co. has taken the concept of a work space to the next step, by weaving life and business together. Often, the concepts of the office reflect the attitude and personalities of those who helped to develop it, and it rings very true here.

"We've worked hard to create a space where our members can feel both at home and be inspired at the same time. The raw look reflects our philosophy that we are still on the journey ahead together," says The Co.'s head, Nim Sivakumaran.

Originally launching in Singapore, The Co. established itself in Kuala Lumpur in 2014 as one of the pioneers of co-working spaces in South-East Asia, selected by MDEC as the First Digital Hub in Malaysia. Not to mention, they're right in the heart of trendy — Bangsar.

The Co. culture

With a motto like "Work via Life", The Co. certainly lives up to its values. They promote a work-live-play concept, strongly believing in a good balance with health and wellness, and the growth and productivity of the businesses in the premise. They even organise yoga sessions every Monday, and regularly provide members opportunities to interact with others in the community.

Sivakumaran tells us, "We facilitate a culture where your best work is done through a life lived to the fullest, bringing you bespoke events and partnerships that matter, and curated around the themes of growth, social, wellness and discovery."

Knowing their community, The Co. doesn't give a canned approach to them. Aware that nurturing and curating the people there takes a lot of work, engaging the community outside of the four walls is something a lot of companies are intimidated by, yet it's been a lesson that they've learnt in their time spent cultivating it. It's something very satisfying to Sivakumaran, who compares it to feeling like a proud father upon seeing the growth in and of their community.

From personal meeting rooms to communal spaces, they've got all kinds of settings you need. From personal meeting rooms to communal spaces, they've got all kinds of settings you need.

The concept of The Co. office

With Bangsar well known for its trendy bars and hipster cafes, The Co. is completely comfortable in its setting. With big windows and a clean facade, you might describe the work space as rustic, minimalistic, even. Concrete walls adorn the walls and ceilings, with wooden tables arrayed all over the work spaces. Fresh air is easily available for those who need to go out for a bit; the greenery outside is a nice touch as well.

There's quite a variety of spaces too. Whether you need meeting rooms, or communal spaces shared with other people, it's all here for you. There’s a mix of open concepts to facilitate collaboration and exchanges between people, and private suites to cater to those who would prefer a bit more privacy. Comfy chairs are aplenty, and the cafe’s sleek and roomy look, a favourite place for many, is no stranger in such a place as Bangsar. Their spaces are meant to inspire creativity and growth, as well as build the community and connections within the neighbourhood. There’s a little bit of everything for everyone to cater to their individual tastes and styles.

Sivakumaran appreciates the choice of space as well. "Whenever I'm in KL I love the ability to float around the space depending on the nature of the work I'm doing, be it our on-site coffee shop or a private office when I want some solitude."

Benefits of working at The Co.

While growing up, Sivakumaran always valued meeting people and the different aspects and cultures around the world. It's something that has tremendously affected his career and certainly reflects on how the staff at The Co. conduct themselves.

The cafe is a cosy and popular place for the community. The cafe is a cosy and popular place for the community.

"As an entrepreneur your most precious commodity is time," says Sivakumaran. "Our community team really focusses on the human experience to help our members save time by connecting them with the right partners and provide a work environment where they can be their most productive.”

He adds that the team, as part of Arcc Spaces, cover a further 17 locations spreading across Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Yangon, and even opened a business club in Beijing. Constantly evolving, they welcome creatives and innovators to join them in their next steps.