Why Coworking?


I work on 20Skaters, ThreeFortyNine, Ontario Startup Train and a few others. My vanity site is brydon.me.

As this question has come up frequently as I’ve discussed what we’re up to here, I figured I’d take a shot at explaining what this whole coworking thing is. It’s easy to get lost thinking about this stuff and forget that most people haven’t heard of coworking, why would they have?

I’ll include some helpful links at the end of this post if you’re curious about coworking in general. Please add other links in the comments if you know of others you’d like to share.

For me personally, I used to work in a ‘normal’ company. That meant I went into an office everyday filled with people working in that company with me. My job included a social component. I liked some of those folks, I couldn’t stand others. I had relationships with them. I’d go for lunch with some.

I also spent almost three years of my life as an independent contractor working out of my home office. Pajamas and a laptop! My job didn’t include a social component. My crew was my wife and our toddlers. While it’s true that my 3 year old’s take on Django’s approach to subclassing was likely as useful as anything I’d have heard from some of my previous coworkers, there were times I needed someone to bitch and moan to who viewed a computer as something more than a webkinz delivery device.

It was the contrast between these two extremes that intrigued me. Most of the social interactions I needed, in both cases, didn’t require someone who was literally working on the same code, same project. It was enough that they knew me and had some idea what my work was about. The fact that you and I weren’t hired by the same company shouldn’t prevent us from working together.

Coworking isn’t just cheap shared office space, the intent is to build and foster a community of independent folks in a workspace. Most people start coworking for the low cost office space, they stick around for everything else. What is that everything else? It’s the collaborating daily to make our ventures successful. It’s creating and hosting highly relevant events. It’s contributing collectively to our community. It’s stumbling on ways to work together.

Interested? Come visit us!