As more and more people are working remotely, co-working and co-working spaces are becoming more and more popular. Today we’re going to take a closer look at exactly what co-working is, how to find co-working spaces, and how to decide if it’s for you.
What Exactly IS Co-Working?
Co-working in a nutshell is a shared workspace where everyone pays a fee to help cover overall costs. In turn, the workspace offers desks, an internet connection, and usually things like a printer and fax machine. People can “rent” a desk, at the workspace, see and meet other new people, and have a different 4 walls than the one’s their used to. It offers more privacy and quiet than a coffee shop, but less than a private office. In turn, it’s more expensive than a coffee shop, but much cheaper than a private office.
How to Find Co-Working Spaces
You can always try Google, but there are a few different places that make it a bit easier to find a co-working space.
The Co-Working Wiki
The Co-Working Wiki is your one-stop shop for all information related to co-working, including a directory of co-working spaces across the world. In addition to the directory, they have information on co-working for all levels-whether you’re just investigating, have co-worked before, or are interested in starting your own co-working space. It also includes a information on how to get involved, media coverage of co-working, and links to other resources. Definitely start here.
DeskWanted allows you to search for co-working spaces both by location and lease terms, such as Daily, Monthly, Quarterly, or Yearly. It list spaces from all over the world, but has more of a focus on Europe.
Similar to DeskWanted, Loosecubes allows you to search for co-working spaces by location and minimum stay. One of the nice things about Loosecubes is it lets you find and reserve desks for as little as one day-and you can make the reservation straight through Loosecubes. Loosecubes also lists spaces from all over the world, but has more of a focus on the United States.
Is It For You?
Well, if never hurts to try. And some co-working spaces let you rent for the day, so you can test it out and see how you like it.
However, if you’re on the fence about trying and any of the below statements ring true, it might be worthwhile to look into:
While you enjoy working remotely-and/or working for yourself-you find yourself lonely and missing co-workers.
You find yourself easily distracted at home and miss having a designated workplace.
You have a hard time separating work-time and home-time. Leaving and going to an office space might help you distinguish and create work-boundaries.
Although you prefer to work from home regularly, you think it might be nice to get out and try something new.
Have you tried co-working before? What did you think of it? Is it something you’d do again?
As a 4th generation entrepreneur, and as someone who grew up in a small town, being a business owner has a very different meaning to me than to someone from the silicon valley. I grew up watching my father and grandfather build businesses on their own with nothing more than an idea, willingness to take risk, and maybe some capital from savings. Half my friends had parents who ran some sort of small business in the community. None of these companies had investors, none of these companies had boards of directors, and none of these companies were being built to be sold. Many of these companies had revenues in the millions even. Many of these business owners did end up selling their companies, but as a form of retirement.
Maybe I am jaded because I am in the Internet business, but I talk to future entrepreneurs every day - people with dreams and plans of running their own business. I have been talking to such people for over a decade now. More and more I am hearing from people not thinking about starting businesses the traditional way for traditional reasons. Everyone wants to start an Internet company. It makes me wonder: is the small town entrepreneur dead? Are we entering into a period when the market is no longer the small town, but the world? Are we entering into a period when hard work and a little savings are not enough to start a company and be one’s own boss?
Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with building a web business. Heck, I am no one to criticize since I have founded several Internet companies (as well as several small town businesses). We hear all the time that most start-ups fail. I think people need to be clearer about what it means to affirm that “most web start-ups fail”. I think the chances of success, defined by not having to close down your business in the future, are much greater in the traditional model described above. I am rather sure the number of failed Internet start-ups is higher than the number of failed traditional businesses.
All this begs the question; In a world where more and more future entrepreneurs are turning to the web is the entrepreneurial spirit going to decrease because the success rates are much lower?
Job hunting? I’ve been there. Less than a year ago, I applied to more jobs than I can remember and went on five interviews before I landed a new position. It was a learning experience, or so I thought. Recently, I found myself on the other side of the table as a member of a hiring committee. This time, I was the one sifting through scores of letters and resumes, evaluating qualifications and conducting interviews. And every time I shook my head at a novel-length cover letter or a resume that looked like it belonged to a 16-year-old, I realized I was learning much more about job hunting than ever before. Here, then, are some tips from someone who’s been there. But this isn’t a how-to for applicants; it’s a how NOT to.
- Use a generic opening. There are only so many times – maybe twice – I could read “I would be a good fit for this position because…” before my eyes glazed over. Obviously you need to explain why you’re the perfect candidate, but you don’t need to bore people to death doing it. Make the reader want to meet (read: interview) you. (Aside: I went with unusual openings when I was a job seeker, and I’d like to think the tactic helped me land those five interviews.)
- Define the company. The person hiring you already knows what the organization does, what its mission statement is and whom it serves. Proving you can look up a website will not give you an edge.
- Re-write your resume. The cover letter and resume are different for a reason; one shouldn’t be a re-worded version of the other. Use the cover letter to detail your most relevant work experience, or share something that isn’t in your resume. It’s where you should explain any questions your resume might bring up: Gaps in employment, lots of jobs in a short period of time, little relevant experience.
- Get too wordy. One page is fine.
- Make typos, use incorrect grammar or spell things wrong. Yeah, you already knew this, but apparently some of you think you’re (not “your”) much better editors than you are. This is the time to swallow your pride and ask a perfectionist friend (or two) to check things over for you. Trust me, it’s worth it.
- List an objective. Really, who cares? We know your main objective: To get this job.
- Use personal testimonies. I can hardly believe this needs to be said, but I honestly saw a resume that had quotes from friends and co-workers about how wonderful an applicant was. It was unnecessary (that’s what references are for) and just plain weird.
- Talk about irrelevant experience. You have CPR certification? Great! But if you’re applying for an upper-level marketing position, it’s not a benefit and looks like you might have applied for the wrong job.
- Go too long. That’s not to say you have to keep it to one page, as has been the rule. Unless a length is specified, no one is going to throw out your application because your resume goes on to a second page. However, it shouldn’t go too much past a second page. Say what needs to be said.
- Be vague. When asked about your experience, bring up specific projects. Talk about what you actually did and what tools you used to do it.
- Get off topic. If the question is long or complicated, feel free to ask the interviewer to repeat it. Write it down if necessary. Generally, it’s a good thing if the person interviewing you is writing notes as you answer. If she’s chewing the end of her pencil and staring vacantly at the clock, wrap it up. Fast.
- Act cool. You want the job, right? Be enthusiastic. Don’t worry about seeming desperate. I’d rather hire someone who seemed desperate for a job than someone who seemed like he didn’t need it.
There you have it: Everything not to do if you want to land that job. I can’t promise these tips will get you hired – if I could, I would be in the Bahamas on my yacht right now – but I can promise they’ll keep your application from being immediately sent to the shredder.
It’s been busy around here lately. We’ve been neck-deep in work, building products and improving features. As a result, Skyclerk is looking pretty good (see for yourself). But another result is this blog has been a little quiet.
That’s about to change, though, in a big-time way. Here’s a question: Do you like fun stuff? Good! We’re fans of fun stuff ourselves. We’d like to have some fun right here on this very blog. As of, oh, rightnow, we’re moving our product-centric blog away from this space. In its place, we want to bring you fun stuff. Cool stuff (like that photo below). Stuff that catches our eye and makes us want to tell the nearest person, “Have you seen this?” Stuff that we do and think.
We’re going to let our team loose to blog about the things that interest them. Given that we’re a bunch of interesting, interested people (at least we like to think so), the new posts should reflect that. It’s inevitable that at least some of the posts will be related business, accounting, web, etc. After all, that’s what we know, what we live and breathe. But part of spending so much time online means we consume a lot of information. Being human, we think about the information. Being humans with the ability to easily, instantly communicate with other humans, we often want to share that information with you – whether it’s silly or newsworthy, geeky or awe-inspiring.
Why are we doing this? Easy: Because after all, you’re interesting, interested people, and we want to give you things you like – the things outside of business, money and efficiency. We’re hoping you’ll share the stuff you like with us, too.
So stay tuned. Check back. Add us to your RSS feed and follow us on Twitter. Then get ready for the fun.
We have moved away from Wordpress for our blog and have started to use ExpressionEngine as our content management system for the entire site (including the blog).
Our new blog is located at http://cloudmanic.com/blog
We made the decision not to port over our old blog because we have new plans for this blog. Take a look at: http://cloudmanic.dev/blog/33/blog-shaking-news