Category Archives: Coworking

A Fail Wail Tale

One of the things I love most about being a part of the larger coworking community is the spirit of sharing between people who are still trying to figure it all out.

The first year — or three — can be a roller coaster of victories and defeats, but there are literally hundreds of people out there more than willing to share the things they have found to work for them. During the first year of building our community I was fortunate enough to get endless amounts of amazing advice from veteran coworking space operators around the world and it made all the difference between continuing on and throwing in the towel.

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Turning a coworking space into a coworking community

I have a special place in my heart for coworking space operators who have done it all wrong. It’s a story that I’ve heard over and over since we opened our own space two years ago: “People just aren’t coming back. They stop in for a day and tell us how great it is, but then we never see them again.” They go on to describe how awkward it is, because when people do stop in, it’s just two people—which makes it hard to give people that feeling that coworking has. “How do we get people to sign up? How do we get them to form a community?”

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On Opening a Coworking Space

Notes from a coworking founder to his younger self

Last September, I took the first steps towards opening a new coworking space in Columbus, Ohio. I went into it pretty blind and made a lot of assumptions along the way. If I could go back in time and sit down with my younger self before he started down this road, this is what I would want him to know.

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The Salt Mines

It’s been a quiet month here on the blog, but it’s been far from quiet otherwise. Yesterday, January and I opened up two new businesses in our neighborhood, so we’ve been running around like crazy getting last minute renovations and details ready for our grand opening last night. Now that I finally have a minute to catch my breath, I wanted to write a little bit about the business that I’ll be most directly involved with: The Salt Mines Coworking Space.

When we bought our house back in 2007, two bedrooms seemed great. Four years later, we lost that second bedroom office to our little Lucy, and my office turned into whatever chair I happened to sit in around the house. By the time she learned to walk, she started to get confused about why Papa couldn’t play with her during the day. So we started to look for some space outside of the house where I could go during the day to get work done.

So when we saw a storefront office space available less than half a mile from our house, we were definitely interested. The space was pretty perfect, but the rent was a little higher than we could justify on our own. We wondered to ourselves if there were other people in our neighborhood in similar situations, who just needed some space outside the house where they could focus on work during the day. So we took the leap, did some minor renovations on the space, and opened it up as The Salt Mines, Clintonville’s newest coworking space.

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, coworking spaces are offices where individuals — usually the self employed, telecommuters, or small business owners — can rent some office space with other individuals to work. Typical office setups are highly collaborative, without cubicles or walls, so people can work on their own or bounce ideas off each other as the need arises. Our space is fairly small, but we have room for a dozen or so people to come in, set up their laptop, drink some coffee, and get some work done.

If you’re interested in coworking, you can read more about The Salt Mines web site. I’m excited to have a new office space to go to every day, and I can’t wait to see who joins me over the coming weeks and months!