I’m going to answer the “why” question first, because it’s the one we’ve been asked most frequently. It’s also the question that I understand the least. Some people ask it because they want to know if there’s a specific reason we’re moving to Prague, and I totally understand that. But some people ask it because they don’t understand why one would want to uproot everything and live in another country. The only answer I have for this later group is, why wouldn’t you want to live here?
In the Spring of 2013—just short of two and a half years ago—January and I made a decision to make a pretty major change in our lives. All of the reasons that went into this decision are kind of complex and hard to explain fully, but we knew that for us this change was something important to us and something worth working hard to achieve. In the months and years since, we’ve been working tirelessly to make this particular dream a reality and today I’m pretty excited to share our plans with our friends and family.
Every year, I keep a running playlist of the music that I hear that resonates with me, and then in December I pare it down to a playlist to represent the year. Well, December turned into January, which gave way to spring and now summer. So now, in what I believe may be the last compilation to come out of the year, I present you with the Team Soell 2014 Retrospective. I hope you enjoy it.
If you love music and live in Central Ohio, you’ve probably seen the work of Clinton Reno a time or two. He’s been designing and printing posters for concerts locally and globally for ten years, and I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to work with him on the redesign and relaunch of his web site, ClintonReno.com
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.
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?”
It’s the time of year when one stops to reflect on what’s happened the previous twelve months, and I’m no exception. For me, this always starts with the music that’s served as my soundtrack for the year. I had to pare down from thirty or so tracks, and what I was left with was a bunch of music that I really, really love—but that doesn’t seem to fit together all that well. Nevertheless, I’ve compiled them together here for your consideration.
So long 2013.
The moment when you realize you’ve been robbed? It’s exactly how they show it in the movies. You stand in one place, looking dumbly around the room in the direction of where your most valuable items ought to be. This is where I found myself Sunday morning, as I came downstairs to make breakfast for my daughter.
I actually made it all the way through the living room, through the dining room, and into the kitchen before I realized anything was wrong. My first clue was the back door. It was wide open. My dog Gus, always at my side, bounded out the open door like it was the most normal thing in the world, but that was the moment that began one of the most abnormal weeks of my life.
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.
A little over a year ago, my dad moved from the house where I (mostly) grew up in Zanesville, OH to The Middle Of Nowhere, IN when his wife took a university position in the northern part of the state. Going from having him forty-five minutes away to three hours away has been an adjustment, but he finally has his house surrounded by all the grass he can mow in the midwestern countryside. He’s happy, so we’re happy for him.