9 episodes

Listen in on our conversations with coworking business leaders around the world. Find out how they started, and how they're growing their coworking businesses. Join the Coworking Accelerator to get the latest episodes as soon as they drop, at www.CoworkingAccelerator.network

Coworking Conversations Coworking Accelerator

    • Non-Profit

Listen in on our conversations with coworking business leaders around the world. Find out how they started, and how they're growing their coworking businesses. Join the Coworking Accelerator to get the latest episodes as soon as they drop, at www.CoworkingAccelerator.network

    9: To Scale or not to Scale - with Shazia Mustafa from Third Door

    9: To Scale or not to Scale - with Shazia Mustafa from Third Door

    Continuing with our series of scaling a coworking business, we chat with Shazia Mustafa from Third Door - a coworking space and nursery based in London. Ten years into running the business, Shazia laughs as she recounts the story of being new to parenting whilst needing to work, and how this sparked the idea and motivation for what became Third Door.

    Listen in to the podcast to hear what happened next, including a tough decision not to scale after a year of prep, lessons learned from that and how this informs future plans for growing the business. Because the answer is “Yes, do scale - but do it right!”

    We also hear about

    - How values and integrity inform running a business
    - Building foundations and ensuring longevity
    - What to have in place and what to consider prior to scaling
    - What makes for valuable marketing
    - Why waiting with scaling paid off
    - Advice for new coworking businesses
    - …and what surprises Shazia about the coworking movement!

    • 18 min
    8: Lessons from Scaling - With Tajinder Lachhar from Bathtub 2 Boardroom

    8: Lessons from Scaling - With Tajinder Lachhar from Bathtub 2 Boardroom

    In this episode on the theme of scaling your coworking business, we catch Tajinder from the Lonon based charity Bathtub 2 Boardroom. She tells us about a journey which began with “falling into coworking” in 2012 and now involves running three spaces — with further expansion plans.

    Give it a listen to hear about serendipity that made market research redundant, the unexpected idiosyncrasies of basing your coworking space in a college, and how to build a good reputation to help you as you grow.

    We also hear about
    - the way in which scaling aids adaptability
    - the risks and negatives of scaling
    - maintaining a culture across multiple floors and spaces
    - how to manage a growing community when things go wrong
    - what to consider when looking at a new location
    - a potentially positive outcome of Brexit…
    - … and Tajinder’s top tip if you’re wanting to open another coworking space!

    • 18 min
    7: Challenges of Scaling - With Tori Bravery from Mainyard Studios

    7: Challenges of Scaling - With Tori Bravery from Mainyard Studios

    Claire sat down to chat to Tori from Mainyard Studios about the challenges of taking over the world — or maybe just a small bit of London… Starting in 2012 and now with no fewer than seven work spaces across the city ranging from music studios to coworking offices, Tori looks back on the journey of scaling the business and tells us what got her started, what kept her going and what she and her partner(s) have learned along the way.

    Listen in to this podcast to hear Tori’s story about windowless warehouses come designer work spaces, what it is like to set up a business with your life partner, and how doing much of the work yourself helps you find out what you’re really made of.

    We also hear about

    - the skill sets and attitude required to scale
    - finding and investing in the right people for your team
    - project and team management
    - managing the budget and capacity
    - balancing the needs of your community with those of the business
    - culture shifts that may come with scaling
    - Tori’s top tip when scaling a coworking business

    … and of course, about the importance of community as you grow!

    • 22 min
    6: Growing a Coworking Space in a Small City - with David and Joy Taylor

    6: Growing a Coworking Space in a Small City - with David and Joy Taylor

    We hear from David and Joy Taylor who set up “Canvas Coworking” in a small city in Australia. Their journey began in 2012, when they started by talking to lots of people and hosting coffee-mornings to engage their local community and find out what was needed.

    After starting with a popup space in a café, they looked for a larger “dual purpose” space which they could set up how they liked, and were able to run workshops and events to test and “prove” the business model.

    The next step was to find a permanent space they could lease. With volunteer support (including David and Joy volunteering their own time) they managed to set up their full-time home which is now owned and run by the community. 

    David speaks about some of the challenges they’ve faced, including educating people on the difference between coworking and serviced office space, and getting their local council to understand what they were trying to achieve, which didn’t quite match what the council themselves wanted to deliver in the early stages.

    We also hear about 

    how their coworking space has been able to deliver what the community has needed
    the opportunities it’s created for coworkers to give back
    the challenge of coworkers driving to the coworking space and needing parking, versus using public transport
    attracting coworkers from outside the city
    the successes they’ve had in supporting members to get funding to develop what they’re passionate about
    Finally, we also hear from one of their members, Jinhee, about the journey he’s embarked on as a result of finding David and Joy’s coworking space.

    • 19 min
    5: Coworking at Scale - With Charu and Zaid from 91 Springboard in India

    5: Coworking at Scale - With Charu and Zaid from 91 Springboard in India

    Claire speaks with Charu and Zaid from 91 Springboard in India. Their organisation has nearly 200 staff across 15 locations after 5 years, including India’s biggest coworking hub (68,000 sq. ft.) with a capacity for 1200 members.

    They talk about occupancy and growth rates and the ‘product mix’ that their spaces provide, and how their members’ needs dictate these, as well as influencing their opening hours.

    Springboard recognises that a community manager’s job is to know their members well, so they have a maximum ratio of managers to members of 1:100.

    They speak about the challenges of scaling, understanding the coworking business model, trial and error, experimentation and learning fast.

    • 18 min
    4: Creating an Arctic Coworking Lodge - With Rolf and Stian in Norway

    4: Creating an Arctic Coworking Lodge - With Rolf and Stian in Norway

    Rolf Oftedal and Stian Morel, a pair of surfers, had a dream of opening their very own coworking and coliving space. They live in Norway and fell in love with Lofoten. Already a popular destination for many Norwegians, and boasting some truly stunning scenery, as well as some decent – if not entirely tropical – surf spots, they decided that Lofoten would be the perfect location to open their own coworking space, so they went on a journey to find a space and fit it out.

    They made a lot of connections with other people and some existing coworking spaces along the way, and as they prepare to launch in June 2018, we caught up with them to find out how they got the idea and how they plan to run a sustainable, quality coworking space in a fairly remote – but not too remote! – and beautiful part of the world.

    • 14 min

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