We were very excited last year when coworking was listed as a primary or secondary work location for 1.7% of the respondents of our annual independent worker survey.
To the best of our knowledge, this was the first time coworking blipped on a national, statistically significant survey of any kind.
We were equally excited to see coworking listed as the work location by 2% of the respondents to an opinion poll on The Role of Micro Businesses in the Economy. This survey was conducted a few months after our survey.
Conducted by the Association for Enterprise Opportunity, the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) and the Small Business Majority, this survey focused on businesses with less than 10 employees.
I know 1.7% and 2% sound like pretty small numbers. But these surveys reflect populations of 17 million in the case of our independent worker survey and roughly 22 million in the case of the micro business survey. Which means these surveys suggest there are hundreds of thousands of U.S. coworking members.
These numbers are obviously too high. This is a common survey problem. When you ask about new, trendy, fashionable or exciting things you tend to get a lot of false positives. Coworking fits this description - especially given all the positive press it's been getting.
But what these surveys shows is that the awareness of coworking is growing and an increasing number of mainstream small businesses and independent workers are starting to see it as a viable place to work.
This data reinforces our view that the coworking boom is continuing.