After co-working spaces became a trend, it’s time for coWork, coPlay. Gurgaon recently got a first of its kind co-working Space in South Asia – Monkey Business – that provides onsite childcare.
It allows young parents to bring their children to work where they are being taken care by trained child caregivers and early educators. The startup is managed by a group of working mothers from diverse professional backgrounds spanning the corporate world, early education and prior experience of training & managing kids’ experiential centre.
Gagan Mathawan, co-founder, Monkey Business, said, “Monkey Business is the future of any workplace that is serious about empowering young mothers to sustain their careers post maternity. Till we enable young moms and dads to truly balance their career and parenting we will continue to lose precious talent (especially female) from our workforce. It’s not enough to keep talking about the diminishing work-life balance, it’s time to walk the talk. We already have gyms, game rooms and cafes etc. entering the workplace, why not childcare!”
Spread over 3,000 sq ft of area, apart from a well-equipped working space Monkey Business also has well-designed Play Zone for kids to engage in creative activities while their parents work and be a part of the connected community. Monkey Business is born out of Mathawan’s family’s life experiences. He said, “When we had our twins, my wife had to take a sabbatical from work because we did not want to leave our kids with nannies. As a working dad, I too, would struggle to spend enough time with my children. This is how the idea of Monkey Business was born.”
It was not just the strong conviction that led to the start-up but he wanted to challenge the notion of workplaces being baby free zones.
“Garnering the right resources to make it come to life, creating a team of people with diverse experiences and expertise in order to seamlessly integrate and manage co-working and childcare were some things we had to put our heart and soul into.
“Also, designing the space and especially the kids’ area to international standards of quality, hygiene and safety; staying true to the vision of creating a space that encourages thinking, interaction between diverse people and building a community of like-minded people were our main concerns,” he said.
Commenting on its expansion plans, Mathawan said, “We believe there should be a Monkey Business every few kilometers in every major city of India. We are also getting international attention, as it is an idea that addresses a global need. Young parents everywhere in the world feel the need to balance their work and parenting needs better. We intend teaming up with developers, investors and corporates to take Monkey Business to many more locations.