In the 1980’s, when I was a wee lad, I remember getting up every morning to see my dad go off to work. He would return around dinner time, and we would sit down, as a family, to eat. Things have changed for A LOT since those days.
Does this picture still exist? Maybe it does, but I am betting it’s now in a minority, as people have more options on how they do their work day. Some people travel, by subway or train, to offices; others work from home, some in libraries, and others, like we do, out of co-working offices. So many options to choose from in the days of the internet.
The internet era has changed everything. It’s not only about endless access to technology, it’s about mobility and being able to work from everywhere. It’s a big enough subject to be a series of blogs, stories or books. This blog will focus on where Provoke works at the start of 2018.
I’d love to spend a day on the beach, coding a website at a resort in the tropics, or up north, on a dock, skimming my feet in the water. Can you picture doing that? 10 years ago, not really an option, but now for Provoke it could be!
For this piece I have decided to focus on what we feel is the Awesomeness of working out of a co-working space. When Lisa and I decided to team up, we really worked hard at finding an environment that we could both thrive in. A balance of calm and enough conversation that we would not be falling asleep at work.
We started our journey touring all the libraries in Halton. During the tour we formulated our plans for Provoke but, we had our eyes on Co-Working Offices. I can tell you from experience, I have a lot of respect for people that can work every day, out of a library. It was difficult for us to spend 8 hours a day there. The seating in most libraries was far from what most people would deem pleasant. Great for small visits but, horrible on your back and butt when you are in it for 8 hours, let me tell you!
We first went and looked at a new co-working office opening in Waterdown, but it didn’t really fit our needs at that time. We next debated looking at Hamilton in one of the many wonderful co-working offices. However, we were drawn to the Halton Hive, as it seemed to have the perfect balance of environment and workspace. We wanted to be in a community; a place where there were other people going through what we were doing. A place that would be comfortable, yet push us to be the best we could be.
The place was far from perfect, but it had an incredible amount of potential. We met a lot of great small businesses and entrepreneurs at the Hive, like Sign Agent, Teachworks and See My Clients. Wonderful client specialists like Zara who, I have to say, is very good at what she does.
Currently the Halton Hive is undergoing a transformation, including a move and a future new name. They bought a large building with plans to create a creative hub for businesses. Blending everything from music, technology, podcasting, videos and all things business. It’s extremely exciting times to be along for the ride as we watch things take shape.
Things to look for in a co-working environment will all depend on what your company needs and wants. Do you need a community, or do you want it to be dead silent, where no one talks to each other? Do you want alternative services available, like maybe coffee, meeting rooms or even just a nice place to take a break while you are thinking up new ideas? All are valid questions that only you can answer. My answers were what was right for Provoke. We excel in a place where we feel comfortable and we have the chance to maybe spend a few minutes talking to the people in the desks nearby.
I know not everyone is like us, but, like I said, only you know what works best for you and your company. I need downtime to think and to regroup when dealing with a stressful project. I like to walk around and formulate my next plan of attack. Lisa likes to wander and think about her next great design but, she also needs to be able to stretch her legs, maybe chat for 5 mins with another company and bounce ideas off of them. Being in a co-working environment is a different animal from the offices of old.
That brings us to this moment, as I sit here on a cold January day writing a blog about the place I now call our office. I have an amazing view, skylights and giant windows everywhere letting in all the natural like I can handle. I sit here, happy knowing we are in a place we want to be, and know we have lots of plans for the days yet to come. Now we hope this will make you ask yourself a question:
Are you working in a place that is right for you and your company?
Lisa and I want to give a shout-out to the Halton Hive in Burlington for being awesome. If you want more information on this community visit www.haltonhive.com