All posts tagged Coworking

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Grassroots community, the Kansas City Startup Village, coworks in one of Sprint’s corporate creations – in an uncorporate collaboration.

David Walker

Co-Founder at Conjunctured
David believes in mindful openness, heart trust, empowered expression, friendship leadership, and community camaraderie.

He is the co-founder of Conjunctured, Austin’s original coworking community. Conjunctured supports the business+heart+cultureeco-system and holds space for a more connected and harmonious co-existence.

The idea for the event came up when Erik Wullschleger, general manager of the Sprint Accelerator powered by Techstars, grabbed coffee with Marcus and fellow Kansas City Startup Village co-leader Adam Arredondo.

“We have this really cool space and want to put it to work, so why not move KCSV for a day?” Wullschleger said. “Whether it’s our network or a physical space, as a corporation we have an opportunity to take big resources and repurpose them for the community.”

Last Friday, the Village was welcomed into the space for a day of co-working with Sprint employees, local government officials, Silicon Prairie News and, just as importantly, each other. To get into a new environment and new thinking, but also to run into people they otherwise would never, or rarely, see.  Article: KCSV co-working day at the Sprint Accelerator may be just the beginning

Why this is a big deal:

  • Large corporation partners with local startup community in a big way. This may be the accidental development of one of the world’s first corporate+community coworking ecosystems.
  • Repurposing of space for greater impact. This space was purposed for a Sprint initiatve. But now it has been co-purposed for the Kansas City community. An innovative way in sustainable space scalability.
  • Anytime corporations open themselves up to the public, they help contribute to the positive evolution of the corporate world. Independent, free thinkers have long been disenchanted by the corporation. Not all companies operate like Initech, but the anti-corporate independents of the world don’t know this because most corporations are too busy keeping to themselves. It’s refreshing to see two disparate forces coming together.
  • As the collaboration continues, I’d imagine Sprint would start opening itself further into the greater KC business community. I’d imagine Sprint would start letting their employees cowork together with the greater community, embracing an open rather than closed model. There are plenty of ways the two communities can leverage each other to create a cohesive business community where corporations, freelancers, and entrepreneurs are all allied together in Kansas City.

And this is actually quite poetic when you learn the next unfolding fact. There’s a global coworking conference called GCUC. The conference has been hosted in Austin since its founding in 2010 and has moved for the first time this year to….Kansas City. Serendipity! I’ve been to every GCUC since its beginning, but I may not be able to make this one. In my absence, I hope someone leads a discussion panel on Corporate+Community Alliances. And certainly, invite the Sprint & KC Village crews to share what they’ve experienced first hand – creating an ecosystem where a global technology corporation and a grassroots entrepreneur community are able to cowork together.

The future is already here – it’s just not evenly distributed. – William Gibson

save our libraries

Phoenix innovates traditional library model, integrates coworking

David Walker

Co-Founder at Conjunctured
David believes in mindful openness, heart trust, empowered expression, friendship leadership, and community camaraderie.

He is the co-founder of Conjunctured, Austin’s original coworking community. Conjunctured supports the business+heart+cultureeco-system and holds space for a more connected and harmonious co-existence.

“We want people to talk in here,” said Claudia León, business librarian at Burton Barr. “This is a unique kind of concept. It’s basically just a place for people to come in and network with other people. A discovery space.

Phoenix, which operates the library, partnered with Arizona State University to create the Hive. It’s part of ASU’s Alexandria Co-Working Network, a program named after the great Egyptian library, that aims to open collaborative spaces in public libraries throughout the state. Similar spaces have opened at libraries in Scottsdale and Mesa, and Goodyear expects to soon follow.

The city spent about $150,000 to create the space, with the money coming from its capital-improvement and library-operations budgets, a spokeswoman said.  Article:  New Phoenix library co-working space open for budding entrepreneurs

Why this is a big deal:

A recent study found that 90 percent of Americans would be upset if their local library closed, but when did you last visit yours? Libraries are facing closure everywhere. The model of the traditional library is facing extinction, but evolution happens, and guess what? What’s going on in Phoenix is a clear sign that even the old-school library model can evolve in new ways. Way to go Phoenix for empowering your community and encouraging collaboration in new ways. (And while I’m at it, kudos to Chattanooga, TN as well. They’re doing great things too.) Long live libraries.

The very existence of libraries affords the best evidence that we may yet have hope for the future of man. – T.S. Eliot

SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community

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coworking in The Fifth Age of Work

Despite the geographic distance between coworking spaces worldwide, coworking space owners and community managers have done remarkably well at maintaining and building an online community of support to help one another grow the coworking movement. It’s not every day that you get to take a thriving online community and see it happen first hand in the real world. The Coworking Unconference and the Coworking Happy Hour brought together the coworking community like never before.

Coworking Unconference

To coincide with SXSW, the very first U.S. Coworking Unconference was organized and brought to fruition by the fine folks over at LooseCubes. LooseCubes helps people nationwide find a “friendly place to work.” Attracting space owners, coworkers, and community managers from all over the country (and a few global folks too), the Unconference was a rousing success! The event ran smoothly all day, filled with breakout sessions run in a casual, lets-have-some-real-conversations approach. In addition to the breakout session there was also a keynote led by Tony Bacigalupo, founder of NYC’s New Work City and a moderated panel to close out the day. Here’s a clip of the panel moderated by Alex Hillman, founder of (Indy Hall), where he interviews a panel of other coworking space owners from across the country, “Who coworks now and in the future?”:

0081 SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community
Source: GoneCoworking.com

Here’s a great article from a Shareable writer who attended the Coworking Unconference:
Visions of the Future of Work at the Coworking Unconference

SXSW Coworking Happy Hour

coworking happy hour e1301690149636 SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community

With the flood of coworking enthusiasts already in town, we figured there was no better time than SXSWi to invite all attendees from the unconference as well as others passionate about the coworking movement over to our coworking home, Conjunctured, for a party. (Here’s the attendee list) So we partnered with local coworking spaces (Link Coworking & Creative Space) and a variety of we-love-coworking company sponsors to host a happy hour, 4-7pm on a beautiful Saturday afternoon in the Texas sun.

The coworking movement is huge

It’s crazy to think about how much coworking has grown in the last years. There were people visiting from all over the world, and we soon found out people are coworking all over – some as far as Berlin and Stockholm. And, the coworking movement has become so huge, spaces are popping up all over. Below is a map that shows everywhere our happy hour attendees have coworked. (We sketched a basic map on the dry erase board and attendees started filling it in!)

photo 300x224 SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community

We met owners and community managers from all over the country – some with big, open spaces that can fit 80 people; others with smaller spaces that are better for just a few freelancers.

Coworking unifies people

One of the biggest things that was evident was how much coworking unifies people. Regardless of where the space is located, its general vibe or personality, coworking brings together people who may not have otherwise worked together. It gives them a reason to go into “the office” and get work done because that’s what everyone else is doing – and they know there’s a supportive community waiting.

Coworking is going to keep growing

Here’s a video of Liz Elam, owner of Link Coworking, here in Austin talking about the likely continued explosion of coworking spaces:

If you missed the 2011 Austin Coworking Happy Hour, take a look at some of the photos captured by Deskmag and some more here too: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?id=18547482893&aid=277409.

We want to give a huge thank you to the following companies that made the 2011 SXSW Coworking Happy Hour possible:

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Sponsors

We’d like to thank the following sponsors for supporting copartying.

Premier Sponsors

turnstone SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community

Partners

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Co-Sponsors

deskmaglogo SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community losecube SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community popchips SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community linkcoworking SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community
conjunctured SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community cs SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community cocoa coder SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community LiquidSpace SXSW 2011 Brings Together Global Coworking Community
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14 Reasons Why Joining a Coworking Space Beats Renting Your Own Private Office Space

David Walker

Co-Founder at Conjunctured
David believes in mindful openness, heart trust, empowered expression, friendship leadership, and community camaraderie.

He is the co-founder of Conjunctured, Austin’s original coworking community. Conjunctured supports the business+heart+cultureeco-system and holds space for a more connected and harmonious co-existence.

For the past two years I’ve heard loud and clear (direct from Conjunctured members) why coworking is the way to go for them. We’ve been open for a little more than two years now and I’ve spoken with just about everyone that has walked in the front door. Members, visitors, and I have discussed all kinds of things. Specific to coworking, we’ve talked about what they’re looking for in an office, complaints about their previous setup, their experience working from home, the positives of being in a coworking environment, the negatives of being in a normal office, etc.

I decided I would share some of these things I’ve learned in a top list of sorts for coworking. I tried to make it general and not super specific to how Conjunctured does coworking. Every coworking space does things a little bit different, so I tried to focus on the commonalities. This list will be good for those of you out there that are considering coworking, but you’re just not sure if it’s really the right solution for you. Or perhaps you’re trying to convince a friend (or spouse!) of yours they need to get the heck outta the house! Feel free to send them this list to nudge them along and direct them to the nearest coworking space in their city or neighborhood. There’s coworking locations all over the globe, with a coworking space in pretty much every major USA city (see graphic below). No excuses!

Screen shot 2010 10 17 at 11.25.19 PM 14 Reasons Why Joining a Coworking Space Beats Renting Your Own Private Office Space

So, without further adieu…14 Reasons Why Joining a Coworking Space Beats Renting Your Own Private Office Space

  1. No lease! Coworking is month-to-month.

    Most commercial office spaces require you to sign at least a one year lease and many times even longer. Commitment issues? Flexibility is the name of the game in the fast-paced world of entrepreneurship.

  2. Working alone sucks: the need for social interaction.

    In your own private office, yes, you can shut the door and concentrate. But the lack of human interaction for some is very difficult. After all, human beings are naturally social creatures. Simply being in a coworking spaces will give you that social element without you even having to try.

  3. Office spaces are expensive! Coworking grants you low startup costs and low overhead

    As much as people join coworking spaces for social reasons, it is hard to deny the logical reasoning. Moving into your own private office costs money. Furniture, equipment, monthly utilities, internet access, fridge (and everything to stock it with) —- all of it costs money! Wouldn’t you rather spend the money investing in your company and simply borrow all the office stuff? Coworking gives you that option.

  4. A unique place to meet clients.

    Yes, a private office gives you the opportunity to do this too. Many times, though, coworkers enjoy bringing clients by and sharing what an innovative workspace they work in. Choosing to headquarter your company in a coworking space shows your client you’re on the edge of innovation and apart of the small business community in your local city.

  5. Make professional contacts.

    There’s something about coworking spaces that attract specialists in their industries. As a result, working in a coworking space rather than a private office space allows you to weed through the mediocre professionals and jump straight to the best. It’s very common for people to hire each other as contractors, establish mutually beneficial partnerships between member companies in related fields, and even to start up companies together. It happens more often than you think.

  6. Make friends.

    There’s something about being around the same people every day that allows you to slowly get to know one another. Friendship is pretty hard to guarantee, but it’s pretty easy to make a friend or ten when you work in a coworking space. It’s very common for people to go to lunch together, grab drinks after, do weekend trip together, etc.

  7. Receive pro-bono consulting.

    Need an opinion on your company’s new logo? How about you lean over to the graphic designer next to you and get his quick opinion. Need feedback on your new headline for your soon-to-be-submitted advertisement? Ask the copywriter down the hall to give it a quick read. The scenarios are endless. Certainly, you don’t want to bug someone and get free advice all the time. The law of reciprocation definitely holds true in a coworking space. With a spirit of giving, often you get much more in return.

  8. Learn about and become a part of the local entrepreneur, social media, tech community.

    Many coworking spaces host events for local meetups and get togethers. And if they don’t, many times the members are attending them, so all you have to do is keep your ears open and you’ll naturally learn the inside scoop on the important events to attend.

  9. Share important contacts

    Coworking is a perfect example of the “six degrees of separation” philosophy. Example: At Conjunctured, we share media contacts we have good relationships with so that when one member needs to get some press attention it’s just a matter of an introduction.

  10. Build yours and your company’s brand and reputation.

    Often times coworking spaces will promote their members to the local community. Conjunctured has a specialists page where we promote freelancers, a members directory, and also have a weekly featured member that is spotlighted on the main page.

  11. Have a cool place to host company events, workshops, parties

    Often times if you were to get a private office, it wouldn’t be as spacious as a coworking space. Most coworking spaces allow their members to utilize the space however they want as if it were their own. At Conjunctured we’ve hosted company launch parties, a book release party, organization meetings, workshops and more. Members have a free for all and genuinely feel like it is their office.

  12. Be more productive.

    It seems counterintuitive that being around other people would cause you to be more productive, doesn’t it? There’s this interesting phenomenon coworking seems to have discover: social pressure. There’s something to be said for being surrounded by others who are working hard, staying focused, and making big things happen. There’s something about overhearing your coworking neighbor close a big deal on the phone that’ll get you motivated to make big things happen too! It’s hard to daydream and stare off into space too much when you’re around others.

  13. Experience a pet-friendly work environment

    Many coworking spaces allow pets. Animals bring a new dynamic to the workplace. There’s something about having pets around that keeps things fresh and fun. See our blog post: Coworking’s Best Friend.

  14. Learning little things you wouldn’t expect.

    Many coworkers at Conjunctured have learned to make a barista quality latte on our commercial quality espresso machine. It’s a fun talent that many enjoy sharing with others. No doubt there have been a few that have brushed up on their chess skills and their guitar skills at Conjunctured, as they’re both just there, waiting to be played. We even had one member start trying the crossfit workout program after another member spoke so highly of it. And we have shared library where members bring in books that were integral to their professional and personal growth. With a spirit of sharing and community, learning comes naturally.

I hope this list was helpful to you! If you can think of more ideas I forgot on why joining a coworking space rocks, then by all means comment below!

Coworking’s Best Friend

David Walker

Co-Founder at Conjunctured
David believes in mindful openness, heart trust, empowered expression, friendship leadership, and community camaraderie.

He is the co-founder of Conjunctured, Austin’s original coworking community. Conjunctured supports the business+heart+cultureeco-system and holds space for a more connected and harmonious co-existence.

Recently posted some photos of some of the various furry friends we’ve had coworking along side us at Conjunctured.  I really think more offices should be pet-friendly as it really improves the vibe of the place—gives the place more life and a fun attitude! Austin already is a very pet-friendly city and I’m starting to see why! Here’s some dog-friendly restaurants in Austin I found on Yelp. And of course any of the amazing food stands / “trailer park” eateries are going to be pet friendly too.

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View the “Conjunctured Mascots” Facebook album

7 geeky things I love about coworking

David Walker

Co-Founder at Conjunctured
David believes in mindful openness, heart trust, empowered expression, friendship leadership, and community camaraderie.

He is the co-founder of Conjunctured, Austin’s original coworking community. Conjunctured supports the business+heart+cultureeco-system and holds space for a more connected and harmonious co-existence.

 7 geeky things I love about coworkingOne of the coolest things about coworking to me personally is seeing how others manage their workflow and taking the things I learn and integrating them into my own methods. Call me crazy geeky, but here some of little things that I love that I’ve experienced at Conjunctured so far:

  1. Taking a glance at how other coworkers have setup their labels differently in Gmail or organized their bookmarks and comparing it to my own methods.
  2. John Metcalf excitedly asking me what Firefox addon I have that shows a site’s Google PageRank + Alexa rating and me excitedly sharing it with him.
  3. Watching Cesar Torres design a client’s business cards in Adobe Illustrator and me watching his fingers go crazy with keyboard shortcuts that I never use.
  4. Seeing that Dusty Reagan, as tech-savvy as he is, still keeps his to-do list in his handy little Moleskine. And also, that I got to excitedly share with my him how I manage my own to-do lists with Todoist.
  5. Seeing live demos of useful web apps (and iPhone Apps too for that matter) that I had never seen in action. In this case, Microsoft Office Live, thanks to Robert Starek. Most of these demos don’t result in me installing the programs, but it’s just a lot more efficient to get a demo by an avid & passionate user, rather than seeing a tutorial online.
  6. Watching how Cullen Wilson handles client proposals so quickly and easily—a task that I normally dread and find time consuming. Maybe some of that will rub off on me!
  7. Realizing that productive work really can happen while lying down on a couch for hours at a time. (Scott Bellware prefers the ‘lounge room’ to the tables and chairs of the ‘coworking room’ any day of the week.)

Coworking is a constant reminder to me that being consistently exposed to difference is a powerful thing. We all have our unique way of doing things, but if we learn from others as well as share with others our methods we all become more successful in our own rights. It’s simply impossible to have the time to discover everything on our own, so it seems coworking provides an innovative means to in-person crowdsourcing.

-David

Conjunctured sponsors Mashable’s SummerMash Austin

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coworking in The Fifth Age of Work

20080627 k492gkxha3t3pyx2p69x5qpidg Conjunctured sponsors Mashables SummerMash Austin

I’ve been working on this for the past few weeks, but today Karen, the awesome events director at Mashable (the #1 social networking and social media news blog) sent me the good news.Check out the other local sponsors we’ll be chilling with, including Pluck and our good friends at Austin Tech Happy Hour.

Karen’s dragging along Mr. Pete Cashmore himself, along with fellow Texan Masher Mark “Rizzn” Hopkins.Hopefully Alana Taylor will make an appearance at the July 30th event at Buffalo Billiards on 6th Street since we know her bro is an Austinite too.

We’ll be giving away memberships to the coworking space, so make sure you mosey on over to Eventbrite to RSVP for the event—as if watching Pete rocking out to Yeah Yeah Yeahs on Rock Band wasn’t enough.See you there!

–C

The “super secret party” from last night…

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coworking in The Fifth Age of Work

At 3PM on June 23, 2008 we got approval from the owner of a property in east Austin we’ve been in negotiations over for a couple of weeks.

At 5PM on June 23, 2008 we sent a message to a few people over the messaging network Twitter about having a sneak preview and some champagne at the space.

At 9PM on June 23, 2008 we had people from all over coming in to check it out.

Put anything out on Twitter and you know it will get spread around like a cold at a daycare—the great thing about Austin’s super-supportive community.Mondo thanks to everyone who came out last night!More videos will be coming soon as they’re edited, encoded and uploaded.

Dusty put some pictures on Flickr as well.If you have content from last night, send it my way or drop a link in the comments!I had a blast last night, I hope everyone did too.

EDIT: Colin has also put some into the Conjunctured Flickr group.

–C