The idea of co-working is catching on as a bit of a buzz topic. Think of entrepreneurial genius meets digital web worker gypsy. The space is open, bright and welcoming and to break the day up there are events like yoga, meditation, even birthday celebrations and video game tournaments. Across the country co-working has created communities from mix of talent in an environment that is social yet focused and productive..
I first got to visit a co-working space when GenJuice came to Seattle JacobSayles and Office Nomads generously let a group of entrepreneurs gather to pitch business ideas, brainstorm and socialize. The space to be honest is intoxicating; each space had its own character, colors and art. The space with success captured the artistic essence of Seattle’s Capitol Hill. Picture huge sectional couches, bean bags, yoga balls, open rooms with all size tables, and work spaces, views of Seattle and every kind of environment you needed to energize, focus, and or recharge.
Some people work day in and day out in this environment from freelance graphic designers, web developers and even sales consultants they spend their office hours “co-working”. Sharing space with other motivated and talented professionals while getting what they need to do done and also being a part of a community. Then there are the entrepreneurial gypsies, those who come every once in a while to escape the sometimes lonely home office, catch an event or drop in as they are traveling across the country.
Currently I am in Redmond Washington, the home Microsoft, Eddie Bauer and the most awesome off leash dog park ever. I am a fan of Redmond, in fact my first apartment was here in this bike, dog, run be yourself friendly sort of town. Shauna Causey has a habit of introducing me to entrepreneurial masterminds – Enter Peter Chee and Redmond’s little secret for digital workers like me –thinkspace. The office center is snuggled in the center of Redmond providing business suites for all kinds of businesses. The treat for me is their co-working space, a brightly lit space that is open and shared with other digital bees, working away while enjoying a view of evergreens and fall foliage. Free WiFi, coffee and huge desk to spread out and get focused getting things done it is a great place for me to drop by and dig in.
You are an entrepreneur. You’ve been working from home because you like having total freedom; however, you work in isolation. There are distractions, the laundry that needs to be done, the kids running around, the neighbors dog barking… You could always go to the nearest coffee shop, but then you have to deal with the loud grinding machines. Where can you go to focus and get your work done?- Thinkspace
I am a bit stumped however to why this place doesn’t have a line of eager to work co-working hungry people outside the door. If you freelance, work from home or find yourself at a coffee shop more than twice a week to get “work done” why aren’t you at Thinkspace or Office Nomads?
My theory: Tracking down a place that offers co-working, driving there, figuring out who to talk to what the pricing is and what the working conditions will be like, what accommodations are offered and so on are too many unknowns to be comfortable just walking in.
I think the movement of co-working is going to have be old fashioned grass root word of mouth. People like to be invited and be introduced through someone they know to the idea of uprooting from the familiar home office or coffee shop and pay for a space that offers more value.
So if you feel like you need to be invited to Office Nomads or thinkspace, you are officially invited by me to come check out these co-working locations and meet some amazing creative entrepreneurial geniuses.