Howdy, folks! If you were at GCUC USA in Berkeley this year, you likely saw Perttu and his camera following folks around conducting interviews. Now, you can get a peek at one of the projects he’s been working on. Check the trailer here:
That building in your town, with lots of people coming in and out, working on tables and chairs, or even small offices. Everybody wants to know what it is all about. So how do you explain it?
The truth is, that its just like any other office…. but filled with people, who coincidentally, are all amazing, pursuing their dreams and feeding of each others energy and help. But this is just the surface.
CoWORK is a web series that looks to expose the inner workings of this environment. The producers look to take the humor, the nuances, the people, the disagreements and everything else and place it into 20 min episodes about life within these types of space.
Based on reality, CoWORK is a show about what really goes on inside a cowork space.
If you need something a little refreshing and fun you can watch CoWORK Episode 1: “Dog days of the Entrepreneur” here;
Microsoft recently released a series of commercials intended to extol the virtues of Windows 7, Windows Live, and “the Cloud.” Although they might not have intended it, I think this commercial includes some interesting commentary on the evolution of work that is rather pertinent to the coworking community. Watch below and I’ll meet you on the flip side.
Ok, it’s decidedly hokey and a wee-bit predictable, but here are three things that this commercial teaches us about today’s workforce, and the utility of coworking.
1. People Have Side Projects
Three of the four characters represented in this commercial are already at work, but you get the feeling that the proposal the investors loved so much has nothing to do with their day jobs. Not all coworkers are freelancers or business owners. Some are just regular people that are passionate about something no one pays them to do. Yet. If you’ve got a real job, but spend time doodling about other things you’d rather be creating or marketing, you might want to indulge in a weekly night (or day) of coworking and see what happens.
2. The New Workforce Is A Mobile Workforce
Did you notice the guy getting assaulted by the inflatable hammer? Yeah, he’s definitely a stay at home Dad working from the kitchen table. In fact, there isn’t even any indication that the four principle members of this “start-up” even live in the same city. But does that stop them from pursuing their dreams? No. The future will not take place in a cubicle, and when it arrives, coworkers will be the most well equipped to handle the motivation and accountability issues of working remotely.
3. Coffee Shops Aren’t Where You Want To Be
Did you see how fast the start-up’s new “CEO” ditched that apron? Coffee shops provided a much needed middle phase for technically-creative types who grew tired of the 9 – 5 way before everyone else. But they’re yesterday’s news. Think about what could have happened if instead of working on his break, this would-be entrepreneur had grown his idea in a nurturing community of other coworkers? My guess is he’d already be on the beach, celebrating his first round of investments.
Author: @GoneCoworking is the adventure of Beth and Eric, two crazy kids traveling the country to prove that it really is possible to be a location independent freelancer! The coworking community provides a unique opportunity for traveling telecommuters/freelancers/business owners to have a professional workspace and remain connected with their peers while away from home. Here’s an inside look at some of the coworking people and spaces we’ve met along the way!
GC: How were you first introduced to the concept of coworking?
Gerard: Honestly, I don’t remember at this point. I knew about coworking for the longest time, but I mistakenly defined it as rented office space. When I had the glimmer of a wink of a thought about opening one I started digging deeper and realized that coworking was very different from office suites.
GC: What are the benefits/challenges of coworking?
Gerard: I like to tell people that coworking offers self-employed workers all the benefits of working in an office, and none of the bad stuff. That is, you get to chat with colleagues, go to lunch with them, but nobody answers to anyone, so there is no boss, no politics.
The primary challenge with coworking is really the working environment. Working in an open space, next to one another, is not for everyone. Working in a dusty loft, with second-hand furniture is not for everyone.
GC: What sets Cincy Coworks apart from other facilities a traveling freelancer might visit?
Gerard: If you are a freelancer and work in Cincy Coworks you will be working right next to someone who is at least somewhat like-minded. Our current space is too small to avoid this.
There are plenty of office suites in town. Even better, market rates are so low right now, that you could get your own office for cheap. But you won’t talk to anyone and you will work alone. And if you work alone, why not just stay working at home?
GC: I love how part of your slogan is “not just for working.” What other benefits does coworking provide for entrepreneurs/freelancers that an office suite can’t?
Gerard: In addition to the benefits above, we are located in an up-and-coming neighborhood with a coffeeshop, an Asian restaurant, an organic market and deli, all within a couple blocks.
We’d like to hold more evening and weekend events and encourage our members to hold events, but this is a work in progress.
Check out this cool video for a sneak pick into life at Cincy Coworks!
If you’re in the Cincinnati area, and are looking for a place to cowork, you’ll be please to know that Cincy Coworks is a proud member of the Coworking Visa program, and are happy to welcome drop in visitors any time they’re open. Follow @cincycoworks on Twitter, or head over to www.cincycoworks.com to learn more!
After a few months of activity @ cowo milano, I finally managed to do something I’ve been trying to do for a long time: a video interview with a coworker, having him say what it’s like.
As I imagined, there’s nothing like the real thing… Davide tells the story in a way that couldn’be done better.
I don’t post the video because it’s in Italian (if you want to see it it’s here) but I do post the English transcription:
Question – Hi Davide! First of all, what’s your job?
Answer – Hi. I design sailing boats, racing ones.
Q. – Great. What’s your organization?
A. – We are a small company with two offices, one here in Milano, since April, and the other one in Amsterdam, where my partner is.
Q. – How does coworking work for you?
A. – It gives me the chance to have a very flexible work situation, fully serviced.
A place where I can work quietly. always connected to the web and also connected to other people.
Q. – In this respect, how did it feel for you to work side by side with professionals with a different background?
A. – Very interesting. Up to now I’ve always worked with other engineers, and it always ended up talking about the same stuff, which can get boring.
In a coworking situation one gets the chance to interact with people totally different. It’s fun to share your office with a novel writer, or an internet pro… different worlds, very interesting.
Q. – Is such a company making your working days more interesting, or would you rather sit in your own, private office?
A. – No, I’m very happy, actually. I think that for a small start-up it’s a good opportunity to have a coworking space, a less flexible situation would not have been good for me.
Coworking gave me the flexibility I need, also the freedom to renew my staying month by month, adapting to my needs, eventually involving other people in the company, in the cowo premises.
Such a flexibility isn’t easy to find, other than coworking.
Q. – As to interaction with your business partner, in Amsterdam?
A. – We work with Skype, always in touch, with earphones, triyng not to disturb other people here.
I’m a bit late on posting this, but Austin coworking space Conjunctured was spotlighted recently on a segment on coworking on MSNBC. Don Teague did an awesome job putting this together, and we’re very grateful for the coverage.
Hi everybody! As summer steps in, coworkers seem to step out, here in Milano…
In fact, even if we are full booked at the moment (5 desks), we haven’t had much attendance in the office these past weeks, and I wonder if the season has something to do with it.
Furthermore, August is a month rather “slow” here in Italy (most companies/offices/stores close at least two weeks), so these days we are checking who’ll be around and who won’t for the rest of the summer.
To our pleasure, we have received a one-day visit from a blog-friend and are expecting someone from the US too (are you anywhere near here, Susan?).
Besides attendance and visits, we have improved the cowo site (blog, that is) with a list of coworking spaces in Europe and the rest of the world – thanks also to the excellent list provided in the cw wiki – along with few more “coworking resources” such as links to cw videos from Youtube and the wiki, cw photos from Flickr, cw blogs from Technorati… we are open to suggestions and of course ready to include your site, if you like. (Just leave a comment or write to me- max(at)monkeybusinessmilano.it).
Last but not least, we are doing a networking effort with a linkedin group we called “friends of cowo-coworking” which counts, at the moment, 43 members from many countries.
The feeling we have is that coworking is taking its course, and we try to go along with it – developing it but also understanding it… it’s good to see people settling down in your place and feeling good about it, we consider ourselves lucky to have such little community, what we mean to do right now is to keep providing such a service and aventually find ways of imrpoving it, but without any rush.
I’d like to get into deeper considerations about cw, but I don’t feel ready yet, cowo is only 3 mos. old…
So, thank you for reading this, and ciao from Milano!
44 days afrter opening, Cowo Milano sees some interesting facts happening.
1- Mostly small groups seem to be interested in our coworking initiative. First a group of architects, then a group of 4 designers, then again 3 professionals… it made us think. Having 5 desks to offer, would we rather go for a rather nice monthly income, settled for a long time (all of them needed a place for the long run) and practically abandon the coworking idea, or refuse these offers to stick to a more open way, allowing only single or mini-teams of professionals, and leaving the coworking door open? Well, we chose the latter, both because we want to give a try to coworking (otherwise we wouldn’t be here) and also because we don’t feel like hosting groups that are larger than ours (we are 3).
2 – Coworking is raising interest in the italian media. On radio and national press (D di Repubblica recently published an article about cw, I’m trying to find it to post it). A couple of journalist have called to get info and get in touch for future interviews.
3 – Coworkers are finding us. Actually we have two regulars (a yacht designer and a new media consultant) and a third one should arrive in the next few days. All of them are interested in staying for a medium-range period and maybe longer.
4 – I really wanted a video to show what the Cowo is like, so ? pikced up the videocamera and did it. Here it is. Ciao from the Cowo!
Jay Dedman and Ryan Hodson are founding coworking community members who have been instrumental in spreading the word, turning the Hat Factory into a vlogger haven and generally being model coworkers.
They recently produced a video with interview snippets from me, Tara and Brad. It’s a great example of how we’re serving ourselves and becoming the media — and of course it helps to have such talented folks diffused throughout the community.
I’d encourage others in coworking spaces, getting started or simply interested in the idea to record their own videos and share them with the community. I totally agree with Jay that the power of video [is] to make all our ideas come more real. Hopefully videos like this will inspire others to tell their stories and get involved with the larger story of independents coming together to serve themselves.
[podtech content=http://media1.podtech.net/media/2007/06/PID_011747/Podtech_RyanIsHungry_CoWorking.flv&postURL=http://www.podtech.net&totalTime=undefined&breadcrumb=17fb0991fd5542dca1bf1315c37390c7]Thanks to Ryanne & Jay, co-founders of The Hat Factory!
They did an awesome job capturing why Coworking is very different from the idea of just shared office space.