What Business Expansion Opportunities Look Like in 2022

October 25, 2021 | Bank Iowa


As the hybrid working models continue to persist during water cooler talk at many organizations, companies have taken a serious look at how the Work From Anywhere (WFA) trend may affect their future in collaborating.


If the past 18 months has taught the workforce anything, it’s the idea that employees have the ability and the capability to be successful in their jobs by working anywhere from in the office to a local coffeeshop near their home.


Work From Anywhere is an approach to flexible work in which organizations create the right conditions for their employees to be able to work anywhere while delivering exceptional performance and remaining connected to company culture.


The current trend aligns perfect with Iowa-based organization, Gravitate Coworking. Gravitate Coworking provides flexible and on-demand workspace for employees looking to change their remote working scenery.


While there are many perks to working from home, there are also many downsides to multitasking work and managing the needs of children, chores, barking dogs. Owner of Gravitate Coworking, Geoff Wood, notes that the negatives of working from home has benefitted his industry long term.


“Working remote does not have to mean working from home and our spaces are a great alternative for people who want some freedom and flexibility in their work life,” said Wood. “That market of people—our potential clients—is significantly larger than it has ever been and we’re growing to be able to serve it as the public health situation improves.”


Coworking environments are not the only industry benefiting from the WFA trend. SmashPark, an “eatertainment” destination, has also opened their doors to the nomad workforce.


Founded in Des Moines, Iowa, SmashPark is the one-stop shop for entertainment and games, food and socializing. While the entertainment industry typically focuses on targeting the consumer after the eight-to-five work hours, owners of the organization saw an opportunity to serve clients during the business hours and better utilize their space by transforming seating to workspace and collaboration areas.


“While our industry is built around bringing people together, the pandemic seemed to create many plot twists,” said Rachel Wegmann, vice president of SmashPark. “We are committed to serving our local communities and we are doing that by watching trends and adapting accordingly.”


Since 2018, SmashPark has seen success within the Des Moines market. The business is set to open a second location in Pella, Iowa by spring 2022 and later expanding to the Omaha, Minneapolis, Chicago and Phoenix markets.


Gravitate Coworking has also seen opportunities to expand within the last year. The organization has two collaboration spaces in the Des Moines metro area and opened their first rural location in Jefferson, Iowa. The coworking space also added an additional existing coworking community in the Cedar Falls area.


Business expansion opportunities are risky, but isn’t that the case with all opportunities? Warren Buffet advises “Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful.” As the workforce continues to float during their uneasy time, it is natural to be fearful with so much that is unknown—particularly related to commercial office space and the pressure to expand the future of organizations.


As businesses look ahead to 2022, expansion plans may be different than anticipated. By simply looking at the industry trends and adapting to the changes, small expansion and business opportunities may be presented at the most unlikely of times. Companies need to stay patient and alert and act within the best interest of their company while staying loyal to their brand identity.