What a year, what a trip, what a time.
As we start to emerge out of Covid (fingers crossed), I’ve been reflecting on the things that carried me through. Regular touch-ins with family and my closest friends, my morning meditation and quiet time, semi-regular-ish yoga sessions, time outdoors, and our global coworking community.
While some people griped about too many Zoom calls, I leaned into virtual events and gatherings like my sanity depended on them. Every event I hosted and participated in was done from my closet-turned-home-office in what was both a work from home win and a painful reminder of how I missed coworking.
The majority of the calls were with friends in the coworking world. Meetings, worksprints, conferences, happy hours, accountability calls, informal check-ins and Coworking Convos. Lots of Convos.
Since March of last year, we’ve had 13 Convos about everything from using virtual mail as a revenue stream, to community impact strategies, virtual tour best practices, PR strategies, virtual coworking, marketing to corporates and remote professionals, attracting a great community manager and more.
We’ve had well over 3,000 coworking space operators and industry insiders from dozens of countries around the world attend Convos. It has been a joy and a mental wellness touchpoint to have these monthly events to keep our community engaged, connected and in solutions mindset.
As we approach this month’s Convo on greening your space, I’m sharing 8 things I love about our global Convos community.
1. Community Mindset
Coworking Convos are all about supporting and teaching each other. They are peer-to-peer events where coworking space operators and supporters share tips, strategies, insights and best practices.
Coworking has a well-established ethos of collaboration over competition and this extends well into Coworking Convos, where operators learn from each other and push coworking and the flex industry forward in exciting ways.
2. Convos Guests
Coworking Convos is nothing without our guests. Our guests are experts, industry veterans, fresh newcomers, workspace supporters and insiders. Their openness, generosity and willingness to share their knowledge and expertise makes Convos the valuable, fun resource it is.
I won’t try to list the 100+ Convos guests we’ve had for fear of missing someone, but if you’ve walked away from a Convo with new ideas, connections, resources and rekindled inspiration, thank our guests.
3. Come as You Are Vibe
Convos are, by design, informal conversations. My vision, from the beginning, is that Convos are a place for operators to show up, as you are, with all your wins, challenges, questions and ideas.
I love seeing people connect with each other, share resources, be vulnerable about things they struggle with, and generally show up for each other. Convos are for the humans powering coworking, so we like to keep the vibe nice and human.
4. The Chat
The Convos chat is something to behold. It moves so fast that we generally have 2-3 people just on moderating chat duties. When I’m hosting Convos I can’t follow the chat but, once we’ve finished, I go back and read through the whole thing. It is always hilarious, packed with resources and tips, and a fantastic reflection of the collaborative, sometimes irreverent nature of coworking.
5. Our Amazing Partners
Convos happen once a month, but we work on them all month long. It takes a lot of time and resources. Without the support of our Convos sponsors, we couldn’t pull them off month after month.
Long before Convos had proven itself, I had partners go all-in on my vision for the virtual event series. I’ll forever be grateful to my friends Liz Elam and Stormy McBride at GCUC, Hector Kolonas at included.co and Karina Patel, Kim Seipel and the team at CloudVO. They all jumped in early and with both feet, helping me figure out the model for Convos and helping me promote, shape and run Convos.
6. Our (All Star) Sponsor Community
Early on, I learned that the goal was not to find sponsors for Coworking Convos, but to find sponsors whose values and vision was aligned with ours. I’m thrilled to say that our growing community of sponsors represents the finest in the coworking world—and beyond. The following are all-in on supporting space operators and Convos.
Our friends at Allwork.Space jumped at the chance to be the Coworking Convos media sponsor and they’ve been instrumental at helping spread the word about Convos far and wide throughout the coworking and flex world. Deskpass is ramping up big-time. Now in 22 cities around the U.S., the team continues to lead, innovate and support coworking operators and members everywhere; Metigy recently raised $20 million to better serve SMBs around the world with their AI-powered marketing tool; Anytime Mailbox is helping coworking spaces generate more revenue and serve members with virtual mailbox offerings; Think Board makes it easy and affordable to create whiteboard areas anywhere in your space with peel and stick products; and Satellite Deskworks is patented flexible workspace management software that grows with your coworking spaces and community.
7. Our Lab Members
The Lab is, first and foremost, a resource to accelerate and improve workspace marketing strategies and skills. But, at its heart, it’s a community of friends who support each other through successes and struggles in very real ways. Our coLabbers also show up for Convos every single month to represent their space, the Lab, and the longstanding coworking tradition of collaboration over competition.
8. The Worldwide Coworking Convos Community
My heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has participated in a Convo, who has been a guest in a Convo, and who continues to support Convos. We survived a pandemic together—I can’t wait to see what we do next.
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