Top of Mind Thursday – November 9, 2023: WeWork Doesn’t

Leverage2Market Logo

Founded in 2010, WeWork exploded on the real estate scene over the next decade as THE co-working space. At one point, the company was estimated to be worth $47 billion and was the largest commercial real estate operator in Manhattan.

This week, WeWork filed for bankruptcy—its value estimated to be less than 1% of what it was worth at its peak.

What caused this precipitous fall? WeWorks invented the co-work space category and brought an innovative option to gig workers and others who wanted the companionship of an office environment, but on a part-time basis. Certainly the pandemic and the change from in-person working environments to remote and hybrid had a huge impact. But the company was showing big cracks as early as 2019—before any of us could spell COVID.

The arrogance, excessive spending, and poor decision making of its founder, Adam Neumann, derailed the company’s planned IPO and resulted in Neumann’s departure. The shift in workspace needs just added fuel to the fire.

But beyond all that, there was something else off about WeWork. They acted as if there was no limit to the people and organizations who would buy into their concept. They ignored the fact that business models tend to have a lifecycle and that no brilliant idea lasts unchallenged forever. They expected the robust economic environment would go on forever, and acted as if there was no downside and they would always be the best game in town.

It’s easy to get arrogant when you’re on top, and to breathe too much of your own exhaust. The lesson for all of us is to not get too caught up in the hoopla of the moment and lose our perspective of the bigger picture around us.

What works when things are great may not keep us going when things change. Ask WeWorks what works. . . and what doesn’t.

Check out our marketing leadership podcasts and the video trailer for my book, Marketing Above the Noise: Achieve Strategic Advantage with Marketing that Matters.

Marketing Above the Noise.

Download a FREE chapter now.

What are people saying?

Buy now.


Let us help your business rise to the top.
(650) 281-4854

This entry was posted in News and Updates, Top of Mind Thursday Memo and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.

  • Read Our Blog

  • What’s New

    PodcastLinda Popky appears as a guest expert on Technically Speaking to outline your steps to launching and promoting your book! - Listen

    Podcast: Linda Popky and Dan Weedin (Shrimp Tank Podcast) talk with Brett Clark from BC Fitness about the importance of staying active and doing resistance training to slow down muscle loss as we age. - Listen

    SAC® Press Release: "Companies Eye Innovation and Disruption in Volatile Economy" – Read Release.

    Video: Just a Moment for Marketing: One-minute marketing tip videos. – View over 100 videos.

    eBOOK: Top of Mind: 101 Insights to Transform Your Business
    Purchase PDF or ePub book.
    Top of Mind

  • Read Our Blog

  • Subscribe to the Top of Mind Thursday Newsletter

    Free articles download with sign up
  • Marketing Above the Noise

    Introducing Dynamic Market Leverage™, an approach to help cut through the clutter, stand out, and effectively build business.

    Marketing Above The Noise

    What's Inside Available in Hardcover and eBook formats