As makers of a web-based app, we’re all about folks working from where ever they happen to be in order to get the job done. In fact, I’m writing this from my house where I’m currently snowed in with almost a foot of snow outside and one slightly stir-crazy pre-schooler making paper snowmen at the kitchen table. You’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do!
Sometimes, though, it’s nice to have a place to go to do your work where there are not piles of laundry stacked around you and no one is licking their fur really loudly while you are trying to write (LOOKING AT YOU, KITTY). Which is why we’re such fans of the co-working movement. Co-working is the best of both worlds: your schedule is flexible and yours to make, you can talk to folks or not, and you can choose a place that’s conducive to the type of work you need to get done. And all this without the expense and hassle of actually keeping a full-time office.
Many great co-working spaces and apps have cropped up over the last couple of years. I recently gave a presentation with my friend Amy Ellis of MailChimp at the gorgeous Link co-working space in Austin, TX, where we met founder Liz Elam. They have an interesting model where you become a member (like you would for a gym) but rather than working out, you get a lovely, airy, fully-stocked and functional office at your disposal with kitchen snacks and instant, smart co-workers. Genius!
Here’s a quick interview with Liz (sorry for the shaky camera work and the skinny picture: I was actually getting sick that day)
Liz introduced me to another great co-working project called Loosecubes. Loosecubes is an international community of folks looking to build a network of shared work spaces. Whether you have a space to rent or are looking for someplace to hang your laptop cord for a few days (or even weeks), Loosecubes is a great resource. Why not work in, say, London for a while? And Jelly is another interesting work model that pioneered a movement where people get together and work out of each other’s homes or in coffeeshops.
BatchBlue is keen to support the mobile movement: developing an iPhone app, working on an Android version, hosting our own weekly co-working day at our Providence office called BatchHaüs and supporting our friends over at workshifting.com. And we’re very pleased to announce that we’re coming on as a sponsor at the Co-Working Unconference at SXSW this March, which describes itself as being “a collaboration of people who are leading the charge in the growing coworking movement and are passionate about the future of work.” Going to SXSW and want to join us for this? Sign up and we’ll see you there!
Mobile apps and cloud computing are increasingly allowing us to decide where, when and how we work. We think that opens up a lot of interesting possibilities for work and beyond and we’re excited to be a part of it.