One of the great dreams of most office workers, is the dream of working from home. Of being able to stay home, not come into work, not face the traffic, not travel on the train or bus. Just stay home, do their work, and phone in, or attend meetings via teleconference.
But for a startup and for a small business, the reality of that dream, when they work at home everyday, means the interaction with people such as suppliers, colleagues and customers is very little and can be a lonely and isolating experience.
In practice, the dream of working from home can turn into a nightmare of solitary confinement. The loss of social contacts and friendships that are formed at the workplace can make the home workplace lonely and isolating. Not to mention lost networking opportunities, being able to meet new people and make new contacts is a valuable part of the work experience, and that gets lost when it’s just you, the sofa, and the snack cupboard at home.
The grass is always greener: the office worker is wishing they could work at home, and the startup or small solopreneur is wishing that had the benefits of working around people and had somewhere to go to be a part of things again.
Introducing the rise of the co-working space!
At first I didn’t understand what the benefit of a co-working space was, if it didn’t compare cost wise to a serviced office, why was it better? To me it seemed like a serviced office was better value, with receptionist, answering service, print and mail rooms, catered board rooms and a bunch of other perks.
But now, having been around and involved with events and members of a coworking space for quite a while, I have really learned to understand the difference between a coworking space and a serviced office, and compared to working from home.
The difference with a coworking space is you actually have somewhere to socialise, just like at your corporate office, its as simple as that.
And by socialise I don’t just mean having beers and chatting, you actually get to socialise in a beneficial way to your business or project, with people that are in a similar situation to yourself. The ways that you can share knowledge or tips, or recommend service providers, vendors and professionals, or even become customers of each other are amazing. Sharing leads and contacts is one of the best things about co-working.
The benefits you get from co-working are actually what you bring and what other people bring into that space and how you collaborate, share and interact with each other.
New kid on the block.
So the latest of these spaces that I have heard about is called The Nest in Victoria Park(you know, just across the causeway). I caught up with the owner Mark Amin to have a chat.
The Nest, like a lot of co-working spaces, is not all that outstanding to look at from the outside, its not a fancy multi -story Terrace address, at first glance the Nest looks like a any other small office in Vic Park, that you’d probably walk past thinking that it might be a cafe that will be built one day.
But the beauty is inside, It has all the facilities that you need to do your work, your printing, wifi internet, right in the heart of Vic Park, all around you are restaurants and cafes and food. Plus, you’re not far from the city, Its just across the causeway as John Hughes loves to say. And the thing is there are other people there that are all from different industries, Mark Amin the owner, likes to choose who will fit into the space, and makes sure that everyone is complementary to each other, and not competitors.
People can and do actually help each other out, not compete, and feel safe and secure and supported in the Nest, which is why he named it The Nest, an environment for growing and nurturing in a safe place. It makes you feel confident knowing that you can bring customers back, knowing that the others are not there eyeing off your dinner so to speak.
Overall, its a really good space.
Mark’s background as a market researcher has given him a real passion for helping others to turn their ideas and products in real businesses. He decided to build the Nest and help others rather than launch into a marketing business of his own.
Check out the Nest, ask about their membership options, and join up. They are also hosting workshops and meetups, so sign up for a newsletter or like their Facebook page.
We’d like you to join us in welcoming them to Perth’s blossoming startup ecosystem.