After attending the 2012 Global Coworking Unconference Conference, I left with an overwhelming desire to unite our own Atlanta coworking community. Generally in coworking, we talk so much about collaboration and communication within our spaces, but rarely do we discuss what is happening outside of them. While in Austin, I learned that many of the Seattle coworking owners formed a group called the Seattle Collaborative Space Alliance and had been casually meeting to discuss issues and celebrate successes. These get-togethers were used to bring about best practices in the Seattle coworking community. I sat in my chair listening to them, having the urge to jump and scream, “I want that!” I wanted someone to talk to who knew exactly what I was going through.
Upon my return back to Atlanta, the first item on my to-do list was to send an email to everyone considered within the Atlanta coworking community that I knew. We had our 1st meeting at 151 Locust. For most people in the room, it was the first time meeting one another. Ignition Alley, Hub, 200 Peachtree, Bean Work Play Café, and The Fusebox were all in attendance (Strongbox West and the Venture Spot had previous commitments, but it wouldn’t be right not to mention them~).
That first meeting was unstructured, casual, and with no agenda. It took us only a few minutes to realize that we were not there as competition, but as associates to help each other out. Expectations and boundaries were hashed out; friendships were formed.
The main objective on all of our minds was to raise the awareness of coworking in Atlanta, in turn, hoping to build sustainment within in our spaces. I look forward to what will come.
You can follow the Atlanta Coworking Alliance on Twitter (@ATLcoworking)
Also! Checkout the 2013 Global Coworking Unconference Conference; I’m going to be there, are you?