Trendy coworking spaces where freelancers get to reclaim the joy of work buddies usually come with a membership fee. Over in Scandinavia, however, a group of hospitable Swedes are trying to kickstart a more laid-back approach. "Hoffice," as founders Christofer Gradin Franzen and Johline Zandra decided to name their experiment, involves transforming regular homes into free, temporary coworking spaces and encouraging all participants to work in synchronized 45-minute shifts.
Then the routine gets a little weird. As Co.Exist explains, after each 45-minute shift, an alarm clock or otherwise attention-grabbing device sounds off, prompting the group to take a short break together, a recess that starts with confessing what you've been able to accomplish in the elapsed time and feeds into some form of group exercise (meditation or stretching are common options). And then, before starting a new shift, another sharing circle asks members to announce what they hope to get done next.
Official Hoffice cohorts, which are usually assembled through Facebook groups, have already taken root in several Swedish cities, including Stockholm, Malmö, and Järna. So perhaps the regimented system is just what people are looking for. In this era of AirBnBs for everything, more notable is how the founders are determined to keep the operation free (save for donations towards coffee), holding onto the simple idea that a home is a gift to be shared.