Coworking Spaces


I've never been much of a fan of incubators. Some have made the model work. My favorite of the bunch is Betaworks, based here in NYC. Betaworks is more than an incubator, but they have shown that they can make the incubation model work with projects like and chartbeat.

But one aspect of incubation that I like very much is the idea that multiple projects are sharing the same workspace. The term for this kind of work setup is coworking. There are various approaches to coworking.

There is the shared space model. Foursquare, Curbed, and Hard Candy Shell have shared a single office for the past year and a half and they get a lot of benefits from working together even though they are three companies all working on very different things. Our portfolio company has employees from our portfolio companies Disqus and Zemanta working out of their office. We see that kind of setup all over the startup world. I encourage all of our young companies to think about that kind of setup.

The main benefits of this kind of setup are comraderie (small startups can be lonely), knowledge sharing, high energy, culture, and cost sharing. I have heard so many stories of software developers walking to the other side of the office to talk to software developers working for another company to talk about a thorny tech issue. That same thing can happen in finance, legal, bus dev, marketing, product management, really all parts of the business. You can get some of the benefits of scale without being at scale.

I have been contacted by a large number of people working in city, state, and federal government recently asking me how they can help small tech companies. They often ask about real estate. I tell them that small office spaces are plentiful and not terribly expensive, but that what we need more of is coworking spaces. And we have been getting them at a nice clip here in NYC.

The "grandaddy" of NYC coworking spaces is New Work City. They just raised almost $20k on Kickstarter to open "the awseomest coworking space NYC has ever seen."

A few weeks ago I was down at the NYU Poly coworking space on Varick St right near the Holland Tunnel. They have about thirty companies in one large open floor in a very nice buiding owned by Trinity Church. NYC Seed keeps their manhattan office there as well.

Dogpatch Labs has coworking spaces in SF, Boston, and NYC. The NYC Dogpatch is on 12th between University and Broadway. There are a lot of great companies going into and coming out of Dogpatch these days.

A new coworking space has opened in Williamsburg recently called The Brooklyn Makery.  The image at the top of this post is of their space. I am really excited about this project and a few of us from our office are going out there in a few weeks to visit all the teams.

There is an all woman entrepreneur coworking space on 23rd St between Fifth and Sixth called InGoodCompany. There is an all green/environmental startup coworking space on lower broadway called Green Spaces.

I could go on and on, but I'll just link to this wiki of coworking spaces in NYC. If yours is not on there, please add it.

If you are launching a startup or have one that is just one or two people, you should really try to get into a coworking space. It can be more cost effective, but that is not the best reason to do it. You'll get knowledge sharing, energy, and a lof of camraderie. And you can't put a price on those things when you are doing a startup.

#VC & Technology

Comments (Archived):

  1. Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry

    As someone who’s spent a few months working in La Cantine, the great coworking space in Paris, I absolutely agree (I remember we had that discussion).That being said, sorry to nitpick but it’s “camaraderie”, not “comraderie” or “camraderie”.

    1. Dave Pinsen

      Firefox’s automatic spell check feature is helpful in avoiding misspellings such as that.

      1. maxthemonkey

        hi fred, thanks for bringing coworking upvery interesting also your analysis on incubators (which I agree about)we have started a coworking space, and after that have launched a network project, to encourage offices who have spare desks to do the same.we give a registrered logo, legal papers, knowledge base, web space, direct marketing for an annual fee of 250 euros (we’re based in italy)the cowo network, in less than 2 years, has put together 40 spaces in 20 italian citiesoffices include creative shops, accounting firms, architects… everything, truly reflecting the nature of coworking culture, which is greatly satisfying and interestingwe like to think of this as “sustainable business” (i.e. putting relations before money, and we can do it because every space lives out of its activity, and coworking is just a side revenue)if you like:http://coworkingproject.comhttp://nomadwork.ning.commassimo carraro

  2. Guest
    1. ShanaC

      Interesting thought there, but I have a question….

  3. muratcannoyan

    I have a space in the NYU/Poly incubator and have had a very positive experience there in the past year. It’s sometimes difficult to express to friends and family that have not gone this path, what an entrepreneur goes through in the coarse of bringing an idea to market. The friends I have there have helped in many ways. I do however believe there is an opportunity to integrate a more formal support structure. We get pitched services regularly but wonder what other coworking spaces do to pool resources and screen service providers.

  4. William Mougayar

    We’re in a coworking space with other startups and the synergy & energy exchange is unbeatable. You get the feeling you’re part of a bigger thing while you’re on your way to being bigger yourself. It’s a development environment, an incubator and a coworking space, all in one. Xtreme Labs / Extreme Venture Partners who have created and incubated this environment has done an amazing job with the right balance of support services around these companies. For e.g. some of us share an Admin resource for payroll, HR, accounting, tax services, etc..and that’s very valuable. And sharing knowledge about both business and technical issues is an added benefit. In addition, by being there, you see a lot of people come by that you couldn’t meet otherwise so easily.

  5. Carl Rahn Griffith

    The co-working space/etc here in the UK (Yorkshire) that I have used for several years has been invaluable in such a context. It also serves as my own virtual office, and I have used it to host various start-ups that I have been involved with, over recent years.We need to see a lot more of such places in the UK.If any of you are ever in the area, drop in. The Media Centre is on Twitter as: @themediacentre

  6. Dana Spiegel

    Good timing for this post. New Work City (@nwc, just opened their brand new space. As one of the oldest (if you can call any of them “old”) coworking spaces in NYC, I would recommend everyone check them out.Tony Bacigalupo, the Mayor of NWC, even co-wrote the book on coworking: “I’m Outta Here: How coworking is making the office obsolete” –

    1. Tom Krieglstein

      @Dana – You beat me to the punch on mentioning NWC. Our company, Red Rover, worked out of there for a while and Fred’s list of benefits (camaraderie (small startups can be lonely), knowledge sharing, high energy, culture, and cost sharing) all ring very true to my experience. It’s all the best of sharing office space, without the BS that comes with it in cubical office spaces.

    2. fredwilson

      i should add them to my post. if i get a second today, i will do thati believe i have met Tony and i certainly know of New Work City

      1. jeremymims

        Startup Weekend,, will be taking place at New Work City, Sept. 10 – 12.We’d love you to stop by if you can make it.

        1. Toshi O.

          heard about this, will def look into and will see if i can make it.

      2. ShanaC

        If you haven’t you should, he has excellent taste in beer.

      3. George Revutsky

        At MyNextCustomer, we actually went further than co-working.We literally moved into our first customer’s office and watched them. Then we got our second customer, and offered them free space on our half of the floor. And then we watched them too. All the time. It was creepy.However, it enabled us to signed up 55 more like them in a very brief time and bootstrap on the revenue we made. (All customers were made to pay early on).Co-working with our customers really accelerated our product development and got rid of a lot of useless features. If the situation is right, I highly recommend it as a variation or complement to co-working with other startups.

    3. Sara Chipps

      I can’t say enough for how the NWC community has helped me in my ventures as a contractor. Not only do I get half my clients at NWC events, but I know that anytime I have an issue or question about contracts, or clients, or professional ethics I can walk in and grab a chair next to one of 10 people who are ready and willing to give me mentoring and guidance.Coworking in general has changed my life. It’s a constant illustration of what is possible when you determine what your dreams are. I see people who find the craziest niche you can think of, but it’s what they love and they get to live it. The bond that organically forms when putting a lot of those people in one place gives birth to awesome fellowship and an abundance of great ideas.New Work City’s story is truly a lesson in community and determination. They were a bunch a people in the basement of a coffee shop not two years ago. Over the past few months I have seen them design/construct/open a 4700 sq foot office. An office with several conference rooms, miles of CAT5, and dozens of desks with the blood sweat and tears(literally) of the people that love it.I’m starting the third series of our programming classes for women there next week. Glad to have the place open for business again.

  7. aweissman

    Thanks Fred. The benefits of the knowledge sharing (particularly technical, but also business wise too) cannot be understated. We also find that for betaworks the common glue (they all share us as a partner/owner) aligns the incentives and also promotes healthy competition. I am particulary interested in seeing how your list of places/spaces plays out where the glue between the participants is something else.

  8. andyswan

    Huge fan of sharing space. Fred is right, it adds to the social aspect of startups. That’s huge. It also adds to expertise. The tech guy from one can help the founder in another in a pinch, and vice versa. Credibility can also increase…more people in the unit, more going on and suddenly it’s “oh you’re in there with _____….ya we should do something.”Good stuff. Stick together and have fun with the process!

  9. Juan Lopez-Valcarcel

    Fred,Great post. I am a big believer in the value of the support network that coworking offers to entrepreneurs. Coworking is based on a community spirit that doesn’t always exist in incubators or shared office space. Makes it easier to turn business ideas into reality.For my company (Pearson – Media and Education Technology) it is also an amazing pool of talent and potential partnerships as we grow in the digital space. Therefore, this year we are sponsors of both TechHub in London ( and New Work City in NY ( for encouraging entrepreneurs to join, I am trying to do the same in encouraging corporates to support digital entrepreneurship via coworking.New Work City actually opened yesterday a new, larger space on Broadway and Canal, so your post is very timely!

    1. Brad Dancy

      Juan, Its great to see a larger organization sponsoring innovation and supporting entrepreneurs. More co-working spaces are needed throughout the country. Its great to see and hear the success stories coming out of New York and the comments below. Imagine the connections that could be made if we empowered entrepreneurs to come together in co-working spaces in cities like Detroit and New Orleans to find innovative solutions to solve their current problems.I am looking for connections here in DC to find something like this to grab on to. DC has Affinity Lab ( who is doing a great job, but there is room for more.

      1. Jason H. Parker

        Brad,I’m a big supporter of co-work spaces as well, and also based in DC. Would be interested in speaking with you to find, locate and/or develop more co-work spaces here in the district.

    2. vruz

      Looking forward to visiting TechHub London.¡Espero verte por ahí!

  10. Ky Ekinci

    Love this post basically for two reasons: 1) I’m not a fan of the incubator terminology either. I do not like what the term “incubator” indicates, that is weakness, sickness, fragility. I do not also like the fact that most “incubators” are government or academia funded, executed, and managed. 2) I’m the co-founder of Office Divvy ™ –providing Coworking and Startup Accelerator programs and business support services for all sizes of business. The coworking trend is more than just fashion. In our business, we see day after day, entrepreneurs, solo-practitioners, creative and technology folks benefiting from a productive, comfortable space where they can do their best work, but more importantly where they can collaborate with others (other members that is). From a Startup-Founder perspective, saving thousands, even tens-of-thousands of dollars annually, and not being a slave to overhead is truly priceless. Thank you so much for putting these thoughts out there Fred!Now, maybe we’ll hold an AVC meetup at Office Divvy… :)Ky EkinciCo-FounderOffice Divvy ™

    1. fredwilson

      i agree with what you say about incubatorsit is adverse selection at work

      1. martin kelly

        What name is given to the physical space where TechStarsYC companies sit? Incubator? Accelerator?

  11. Connor Murphy

    Another #tip we employed was to ask a more experienced start-up to ‘adopt us’ for a few months!! This way we are getting some free hot desks (with the very generous @ammado) and a boat load of help and great advice on all things business, technical, legal etc…

  12. Nick Grossman

    I was just talking to some friends about this the other day. As a medium-sized organization (50 ppl) with a large office, we’ve had a number of free desks here for the past year. We’ve made a point of offering them up to partners/friends of ours, and it’s been great so far. Right now, Karl Fogel (author of Producing Open Source Software) sits next to me working on the Code for America initiative. In each case, we feel like there’s been clear mutual benefit and we’ll keep doing it if we can.Anyway, point is: it’s not just about coworking spaces, there’s also an opportunity for slightly larger organizations to make a heterogeneous workspace with some of the same benefits.

    1. Brad Dancy

      Nick, Are you located in DC?

      1. Nick Grossman

        No, we are in NYC (Sohoish / Chinatownish)

    2. MartinEdic

      We’re relocating to a larger space (this is my day job as Director of Marketing for a rapidly growing B-B software firm) and we want to lock up some extra space for expansion in addition to the space we need now. We’ve had discussions of creating a co-working space/Y-Combinator-style hybrid to cover the extra space.The term we’re using is an ‘accelerator’ rather than incubator which has gotten a little tired.

  13. Lisa Schenone Ekinci

    Appreciate the article. Thank you. Located between Jacksonville and Orlando, Florida, we are a lone wolf in this category in our area. People refer to us an an incubator. Until we can fund them with a new word that makes sense, they will keep doing so. Our entrepreneurs (solar, online, consumer products) are doing their thing alongside our sole practitioners (Attorneys, Insurance Professionals). Great things are happening here. We built the business two + years ago as a franchise model, so the model would be ready to go when were ready to roll out a second, third, 4th location. We provide so much to so many. Not kidding. Our business is allowing a business to hold onto 15k-30k and up in operating expense a year. They are putting it into their business. For a start-up that is huge in this landscape. (

  14. Andrew Watson

    Is there a directory of coworking spaces, searchable by location (and potentially other features – but location would be the biggie)?Andrew

    1. Tony Bacigalupo

      See above comment I just posted… there are a handful of startups starting to tackle the directory angle now, but it’s just getting started.My favorite up-and-comer is LooseCubes. Their team gets it and is building a great product. NYC-based, too!

  15. awaldstein

    I love the spirit of this post!Presuming that there is a co-working wiki for other spots besides NYC?This will act like a Public Coworking Announcement and will drive the aggregation of these lists…good stuff.

    1. Tony Bacigalupo

      The wiki Fred linked to is a global directory; he just linked to the NYC section: It's unfortunately pretty badly out of date, but can provide a good starting point. Honestly, the best thing I’ve found for discovering coworking spaces in a given city is just to google “coworking (city name).” Ignore the office suites and odds are, if there’s a good community there, it will be visible.You can also join the Coworking Google Group and ask around there:

      1. awaldstein


      2. fredwilson

        yup, hard to beat the google

  16. mcenedella

    We (TheLadders) got our start at Select Office Suites: http://www.selectofficesuit… I think Gilt and Silicon Alley Insider did as well. Great place, and the manager, or, really, the “mayor” of the place, Ray Lindenberg is a really fun guy that tries to make it feel like home — he puts on an apron and cooks hot dogs for everybody on Opening Day in the TV room, he throws a ridiculous annual Holiday party, etc.

  17. Nichelle Stephens

    Don’t forget New Work City which just moved into a new space on Broadway near Canal. Next weekend (Sept 10-12) it will host NYC Startup Weekend.

    1. fredwilson

      yupjust edited the post to add them. big oversight. not intentional at all.

  18. Kiril

    General Assembly is opening up next month in Flatiron, and looks to be pretty awesome as well. Combination co-working & community/lecture space for tech startups with a long-term vision.

  19. Kelley Boyd @msksboyd

    Very timely post. I have gotten it in my head that this category could use some innovation. The last company I worked with in an incubator in Austin, Texas was Really Easy Internet in 2000 (a VOIP company that is rated as successful for tech start-ups coming out of ATI). Obviously, things have changed a great deal. Over the years, I have been in lots of Exec Suites ( I know that is not co-working) as the Regional Manager of territories at tech start-ups and had some of the same experiences (cross pollination). Raptor was in the same suite as Fore Systems and we used to collaborate a bit on clients. Though it seems like I helped him more than he helped me!NYC it is different than most places. For me it is important to have a landing pad and/or meeting place in strategic areas around the city. Ideally one in Financial District, Villages, Midtown and Columbus Circle area. I use the Essex House lobby for meetings. That is where I will mostly suggest for a meeting (unless we are eating). I like it and nice service people bring you things as you wish. Ace Hotel is too dark for me though I like the people.I looked at the wiki and have seen most of them or am aware of them viscerally. Doesn’t surprise me that the In Good Company space looks nice. Women want different things in a work space. Though you would not think that by what Eva Cramer has done at Downstate. Amazing…do you know the BAT? I am not in bio-tech but amazing woman to learn from.On this topic, I reinforce Ky’s distinction between an incubator and an accelerator. Two different points of development needing different support mechanisms. Also, what is the validity or reliability of the advice you get in a co-working space?? if you are getting “exit strategy” advice before advice on how to find and capture your customer you are not in a sweet spot.I saw the TechStars announcement and there is currently a thread on NextNY about what an ideal incubator looks like. It is an interesting discussion thread. The prevailing view is that a desk and interweb (homage to My Morning Jacket) connection is not what companies are starving for. It is the mentoring and support that comes with real investment. I am sure some do this…I think that is what differentiates Y Combinator? NextNY thread is talking about doing it different…but what if you can’t get accepted into an “incubator”? As we have discussed in this community, for a multitude of reasons, some just can’t make that commitment.If you can’t, how do you get what you need to iterate from whatever point you are at? I have some ideas and am hashing them out now for review at some later time. The most interesting thing that has emerged during my research phase is that there is way more talent out there (I mean, I am out here:>), and that there are lots of really good ideas that will never get funded because let’s face it…only about 3% of businesses that come to market in the US have any kind of commercial or institutional money behind them. It is boot strapping and FF money that get them up and running.I don’t think sophisticated mentoring happens in a co-working space (with some exceptions). Cross training/pollination does…and for funded companies or connected companies, that may be good enough. But we know, even that is no guarantee. For others, it just is not working. And that means 97% of the people starting businesses need something else. I am pretty interested in find that “bullet and a target” (in homage to Citizen Cope).

    1. Tereza

      “I don’t think sophisticated mentoring happens in a co-working space (with some exceptions). Cross training/pollination does…and for funded companies or connected companies, that may be good enough.”I think you’re right, Kelley. The cross-pollination is certainly useful. Different founders need different things.Something programmatic added to the mix that is laser-useful and involves workshopping and role-playing, and not just speakers talking about a current topic and then we eat pizza. That would be useful to me. Stuff like, practice and get coaching on your elevator pitch. Practice sales conversations. Etc.

      1. raines

        There are spaces that add that level of business- and skills-development and connection. My coworking home base, The Hub for Innovation, in Berkeley, CA, features a level of curation and business development that makes it easy to advance your business; plus, members are screened for social entrepreneurship so there’s a mission alignment, although there are many different approaches and styles to doing the good work we all do.Raines Cohen, Coworking CoachPlanning for Sustainable Communities

    2. fredwilson

      you are an MMJ fan???? wow.

      1. Kelley Boyd @msksboyd

        Indeed, listening to Kings of Leon this morning though…started with Closer and end on Be Somebody. It is just how I roll. ;>)))

        1. fredwilson

          I like the aha shake heartbreak record best

    3. ShanaC

      Honestly, if you take a look at the leadership in NY, a humongous amount came out of NWC and the first Jelly. It’s the network effect and the co-mentorship that seems to be making a difference.

      1. Kelley Boyd @msksboyd

        I am not very well schooled the underlying connections of people here probably because I have not been connected here. But I am working on it. So much to learn. Thanks for shortcutting that for me. Hope we meet up one day. In a co-working space, somewhere. ;>)

        1. ShanaC

          It’s just something I noticed that a lot of the people out of the NYTM that do organizational work seem to have a connection to the very early days of NWC and the very first Jelly. I’m not even sure they noticed.

          1. jraby3

            At Sunshine Suites ( we offer free mentoring and our staff is instructed to connect and introduce people at least once per day. I am the Co-founder and Managing Partner at Sunshine.

          2. ShanaC

            That’s good 🙂

  20. Spencer Fry

    I dislike co-working spaces where there are too many folks working on too many different projects. I prefer it when there’s no more than three companies in a single space. Maybe four. Currently, Carbonmade shares office space with Harvest and an architecture studio.Later this month we’re moving to our own office two floors below our current one and bringing in two friends’ companies to join us: a web design studio and a record company. This will be the best situation for us as I prefer working alongside companies that aren’t doing web app development, but are still doing some sort of creative work.

  21. reece

    For startup people in NYC looking for a good spot, there’s a new coworking space called General Assembly scheduled to open in OCT in the Flatiron District.I’ve seen the space – which is really nice – and they seem to have a great vision around building the community.If you’re interested, I’m happy to intro you to the guys behind it. Email me reecepacheco at gmail.

    1. Tereza

      would love to know more, Reece, as an easy connection to GCT is very useful to me…

    2. Victor Wong

      I second that. I’ve stopped by the General Assembly space and it’s amazing.

    3. fredwilson

      is it on the wiki?

      1. reece

        i didn’t see it on there.

      2. reece

        i pointed the organizers to this post, so i think they’ll input all theright information.

  22. Michael Lewkowitz

    I’d love to be able to desk-surf at startups/vc’s in different cities when i travel. Would be a great way to do weave community.

  23. Campbell McKellar

    I’ve been working at New Work City for the last six months and have experienced all the best things about coworking there in spades. Friendly, intelligent collaborators and advisors. Great friends. A diversity of businesses and opinions. NWC, like Green Spaces and In Good Company, also benefits from being truly independent. It’s community supported and run. No government, no VCs, just a community passionate about doing/making/building great things. Tony Bacigalupo and Peter Chislett have brought together an amazing and growing group of independent people who really do actively collaborate every day. Like the iPad, it’s both magical and revolutionary. It’s really exciting to see all this going on in NYC and around the world.

    1. fredwilson

      independence is key.great point.i just said in the previous comment that i don’t think having VCs or the local government behind coworking spaces is ideal

      1. Campbell McKellar

        Thanks, Fred. You should check out our site (pretty relevant to this discussion, though we’re in alpha) –>

      2. JDean

        While you don’t necessarily want the government to behind the movement, one does need to keep government leaders in the loop. As I have worked to develop OurSpace, LLC, in an incredibly conservative (fiscally and politically) community, I have held several conversations with our City Council members for (1.) I am in a small city (pop. 256,000), and am trying to make my services known and everyone knows everyone. (2.) Our true conservative leaders want individuals, like myself, that want to support small business in downtown without taxpayer’s dollars. Our start-up business education is nearly 100% government funded, many of these leaders are thrilled that someone is trying to break the mold. (3.) One of our largest employers is leaving the community, our mayor has decidedly spent hundreds of thousands to keep them in Fort Wayne. However, putting myself on the map of these individuals, shows them that governments funds don’t need to be spent to keep individuals in Fort Wayne, rather individuals who are entrepreneurs and true small business champions have the able to leverage others.

        1. fredwilson

          i agree about keeping them in the loopi think there is more that government can doi like the idea of tax breaks for coworking spaces, for examplei just don’t think they should operate them

  24. Hugo Stevens

    Hi Fred,The benefits you mention are many of the reasons why we opened the Hacker Room in Mexico City (; I would just add that for emerging startup hubs co-working spaces are an excellent way of creating an ‘alternate reality’ where you can work in the right environment where you are surrounded by other founders (while being shielded from those who don’t get it). Great article

  25. Amy

    Thanks for including In Good Company Workplaces (@ingoodcmpny, in your post. When we wrote our business plan 4 years ago, people would scratch their heads when we would describe our business model as a shared workspace and/or co-working. We are thrilled that so many businesses have opened up with this model. It makes sense on so many levels and I believe that it’s no coincidence that NYC is seeing an explosion of co-working spaces given the broader economies of scale issue that makes co-working attractive as well as the general culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. Since we opened we have witnessed hundreds of women business owners of all stripes and backgrounds learn from one another, combat isolation, build their business in a way that works for their needs, increase their self confidence as a business owner and make meaningful connections on a personal and professional level.

  26. Tereza

    Curious as to people’s thoughts on how competitive startups are managed within a co-working or incubator/accelerator setting.

    1. fredwilson

      dogpatch has had this issueit is manageable, but not ideal

  27. Jason Richelson

    The Hive down in the Financial District is another great space. The people who manage the office do an amazing job. Im very happy to be here. Check them out at

  28. reece

    If anyone from Makery is reading, I’d love to know more.Email reecepacheco on gmail if you would!

  29. aminTorres

    Fred, Love this.I wonder if USV has considered having an incubator initiate of its own?I know you guys have a very clear and straight forward approach to investing but I think it will be amazing if you guys did.

    1. fredwilson

      i don’t like incubators and incubating in almost all casesi love coworking spacesdogpatch is an exception that possibly proves the rule, but i don’t think VC firms should be affiliated with coworking spaces

      1. Adrian Bye

        why don’t you think VC firms should be affiliate with coworking spaces? seems like there could be a natural fit, if you could solve the signalling issues.

        1. Tony Bacigalupo

          VC firms could and should work with coworking spaces… it just has to be the right kind of relationship.We’re working on partnering with a couple of firms on some programming in the new space… the ideal relationship is one in which the firm can get in front of the people building cool things in the community, and the members have an opportunity to get advice and attention from potential investors. Everybody wins.Things get sticky when the VC actually runs the space, because then the space exists to serve the interests of the VC first and the community second.

          1. Brian DiFeo

            The Hive at 55 has hosted VCs here in an informal Q&A scenario, and it has gone very well. The Hive also has relationships with a few VCs and will make introductions between them and some resident companies when appropriate. I think this is what Tony refers to as the win/win scenario above.It also needs to be said that membership of coworking spaces is not limited to tech startups. In fact our community has journalists, writers, a lawyer, and a few solopreneurs who will never have a need for funding, along with startups. As many have said in this thread, its the community of all these “independent professionals” that make coworking so great.

      2. martin kelly

        Fred – why do you think dogpatch works?

        1. fredwilson

          the people behind it are great

  30. Imran Ali

    Hey Fred, very pleased to see you throw a spotlight onto coworking. I don’t remember if we showed you around the Old Broacasting House coworking community when you came to speak at OBH in Leeds?OBH has indeed had more of an impact on the startup community here in Leeds and West Yorkshire than any of the more traditional ‘planned’ tech hub developments. With PR people, journalists, writers, designers and developers bringing their respective communities together in a shared space, the opportunities for serendipitous creative friction go through the roof :)Incidentally, we’ve developed quite a corpus of knowledge and analysis of the global coworking community over at Web Worker Daily (….

    1. fredwilson

      isn’t that where i did my talk?

      1. Imran Ali

        The same building – we had you in the event space downstairs, but the coworking community (about 50-60 residents now) was upstairs 🙂

  31. CliffElam

    We rented out extra spaces to other startups (one of which went on to burn close to $100M overall before crashing – whoo!) but I started the practice for $$, not what we got, which was some mix into our own culture.I would always want to be in control of the people around my company, though. I have seen some pretty toxic stuff occur in startups, and I’d want to launch that out the door ASAP.I would never consider plopping my people inside a space where I could get evicted in the short-term. Moving is dislocating for teams. Having said that, I would expect at least 50% of my next startup to be homeworkers. At least on the tech side.-XC

  32. Tony Bacigalupo

    Coworking communities are valuable and important for startups and for a local economy. They lower barriers for people starting businesses for the first time and encourage people to be creative, and that’s something we could use more of nowadays. The innovation and creativity that’s been generated out of coworking spaces around the world already has been nothing short of amazing.To have a real impact, a coworking space has to cultivate a strong community and be self-sustaining. The growth of coworking in NYC has been fantastic, and will be even moreso when we have a critical mass of healthy, community-driven places up and running that don’t rely on external subsidy.We’re building towards that with New Work City’s new space. I encourage Fred and anyone interested to stop by.

    1. fredwilson

      Tony – i totally blew it by failing to mention NWC in my original post. i’ve fixed that oversight and i mentioned your kickstarter project too. thanks for stopping by and sharing your perspective with the AVC community

      1. Adrian Bye

        so fred, when are you coming to a NWC event? 🙂

    2. gothamtommy

      Judging from all of the comments, my experience must be slightly unique — when shopping around for New York-based co-working spaces one of my first stops was NWC. I recently left the city for the outskirts but was looking for a place to call “home” when I came into the city and to have presentations for (potential) clients. Whoever I spoke to (and I forget exactly who) was not open to the idea and said I couldn’t use their facilities unless I absolutely worked in the space for some time before exercising the “perks”.However, I’ll right it off to being a unique experience based on my unique needs.

      1. Tereza

        Actually GothamTommy I have the same experience as you.What is interesting to me is that, while face-to-face is important, it is not and should not be 100% of someone’s work time. As we get older and more experienced about our own optimal productivity we learn we need some quiet time too, without interruptions.I’ve been part of a sh*tload of research on how people work and one thing we know for certain is that as people have children they get more laser-focused in the work they are doing, compress and get more productive, but also need geographic/proximal flexibility. And they also need quite time to get stuff done, crank through their To Do lists and projects.For 8 years I never had a desk of my very own, we did what was called “hoteling”. I was supposed to be at the client, at prospects. And if I had a team meeting (with a purpose) we’d come in. When I had a specific piece of work no one cared where I do it. We were viewed as professionals who can get our work done. And in fact people with more flexibility are more productive. It bears noting that it requires managers who are seasoned enough to provide clear direction and ample check-ins to pressure-test the results. This can be done as a combination of in-person and remote via Skype/phone/etc. You can plan “sprint” periods when you’re together, but they only work for bursts, not sustainably.Also there is ample research that shows that people who claim they’re working 70+ hours/week are lying. This is based on a combination of self-reporting paired with time and motion studies. They are simply not productive. Something in the neighborhood of 99% work — and i mean “real” work — 30-50 hours/week. After that concerted work they have to recharge.I learned after much wasted effort of long hours logged, losing 20 hours/week commuting to attend unproductive meetings and then not enough time to do my real work, that I am optimal if I work at home Mondays and Friday (where my “coffee breaks” are picking up and dropping off my kids at school and I’m focused on productive desk work. And Tues/Wed/Thurs are early-in, late-out days (e.g. home at 11pm) in NYC where I am meeting people back-to-back and having working meetings. I saved 8 hours/week of commuting, was dying to get into NYC Tuesday morning because needed to see real people, and by Friday morning had many To Do’s to crank through.Most adults I know who live just-beyond-convenient from the City work like this and have for years.I don’t really understand why the co-working world hasn’t caught up to this. As their management gets older and more experienced I think they’ll start to understand it.So in the meanwhile I’ll have to be satisfied with meetings in Starbucks and the Ace and borrowing conference rooms from friends. Because I’m not paying full-price for 2-3 days/ week.

  33. charlessmith

    One thing I’d love to see as a service would be a “desk for a day” system for startups to use as they travel/launch- somewhere to go in between sales calls, bandwidth- easy to build an interesting network out of that I’d think.

    1. Patrick Tanguay

      Virtually all coworking spaces offer day rates, just check out before heading out somewhere. There’s also a coworking visa which gives you some free or cheaper days in many cities if you are a member of a participating space.

      1. charlessmith

        I was more talking about startups with extra space and desks offering it out to others- we have some space in our office that we can’t sublet, but we’d happily allow someone to work here for a day or two.

        1. Campbell McKellar

          Hey Charles, check out – we are an NYC based startup in alpha mode, but if you’d like to share your desks with others you can make a free posting on our site now. Invite code is lovemonday. Would love to hear what you think.

    2. fredwilson


    3. Tereza

      I agree.Would also love to see reciprocal arrangements between spaces in different geographies so you have places to drop in. Kind of like the Ivy clubs but cooler people who are on-topic for what we’re doing.Also on the parenting theme there are lots of startup types in the northern NY suburbs (I’m sure also NJ and LI) who just come into the city a few days a week so would want partial shares possibly paired a local suburban partial-share. There are many days when you need to get stuff done and can’t do it in the house.I hear this from entrepreneur dads a bit too.Perhaps that’s wishful thinking, but there you go!

  34. Jonathan Wegener

    I’m slightly baffled that your post didn’t mention New Work City, arguably the ‘original’ of the NYC coworking spaces (at least the spaces intended for individual freelancers and small startups). Very few spaces can claim to be self-sustainable and independent, and the fact that NWC exists is a testament to years of hard work from several well known individuals at the heart of the NY Tech Scene ( generally, I think you’re absolutely right that when people from different companies share space awesome things happen — everyone benefits thanks to the pooled talent, camaraderie, and the cross-breeding that leads to new ideas being generated. I think it’s helpful to think of each coworking space as a miniature city. To have a healthy tech scene, you need a critical mass of varied talent in close proximity. The same is true of coworking spaces.

    1. fredwilson

      yup, total whiff on thati fixed the postit was not intentionalposting at 5am in the morning occasionally has its downsides

  35. michellegreer

    If anyone is interested in coworking in Austin, I’d suggest Conjunctured, Texas Coworking, and Cospace.

    1. John Erik Metcalf

      aw! thanks Michelle. Indeed. I second that. And now in Shanghai at 🙂

      1. michellegreer

        Hey guy, I hope you are well. I would say that in Mandarin except I don’t know it whatsoever.

  36. Tereza

    I heard a rumor someone is starting a tech-focused co-working space in Stamford, CT.Does anyone know anything about it?

  37. Daria Siegel

    Hive at 55 is actually the only coworking space in NYC that is being sponsored by city government. Great recognition by the NYC Economic Development Corporation about the benefits that take place through a shared workspace for entrepreneurs, freelancers, and startups and the economy at large.

  38. Adelaide Lancaster

    Thanks for including In Good Company! We believe strongly in the benefits of co-working and really are glad to see the increase of spaces all over the country. We have witnessed many interesting ways to execute the co-working concept and think it can be customized for almost any group or niche.Tereza – there are many ways to manage competition and I’m sure that different methods are more or less appropriate for different audiences. Many of our members have been surprised to learn how valuable strong relationships within their own industry/niche can be. Being connected to would-be competitors helps them to hone their own focus and direction even more and they also benefit being able to refer clients that aren’t a great fit to their colleagues who may be more appropriate. We find that expectation setting is helpful – and we emphasize sharing best business practices and techniques versus “the secret sauce” so to speak. Our members feel very comfortable indicating what they are willing to share versus what they would prefer to keep confidential.Something that helps is encouraging collaboration and colleague-ship within the same industry but among businesses of different ages – a type of peer mentoring really. It’s amazing to see young and established companies work so well together.One thing that has been interesting to see…and something we weren’t sure of when we started up…is that for some folks co-working is really suitable for a certain phase of their business (perhaps start up or the “young company” phase) and then once they grow large enough we find that they outgrow the physical co-working offering (but still maintain the community connection). However, we also have seen women adjust their company as it grows to continually incorporate a co-working arrangement so they can continue to reap the benefits of working with a mix of colleagues.Also, for those thinking of starting an initiative like this please feel free to contact us. We have benefited from working with and collaborating with other co-working spaces and are happy to repay the favor.- Adelaide Lancaster

  39. calitalieh

    Great post. It turns out that we have inadvertently created something like this in Irvine, California. There are three startups that are all using the same office here, as well as shared-services in the Philippines (virtual assistant, accounting, helpdesk). I would like to know if there are others in Orange County that would want to join forces.I also want to know what in particular you (Fred) don’t like about incubators. Is there a hybrid approach (something more than shared office space)?

    1. fredwilson

      incubation is entrpreneurship in reversethe idea comes from the incubator, not the entrepreneurand in most cases, that doesn’t work

      1. Danny Robinson

        Two points: 1) which incubators provide ideas? I don’t know many/any. Even idealab will accept external ideas. This concept is new to me, which suggests it’s quite rare. But 2) ideas are worthless anyway. As long as the entrepreneur has the passion for the idea, and they own the company, it doesn’t matter where the idea came from. What I agree with, and what I think you are saying, is that you can’t hire “entrepreneurs” and have them run with a homegrown idea that they don’t have any intrest in and expect it to work.

  40. Adelaide Lancaster

    Thanks for the mention of In Good Company! We believe strongly in the benefits of co-working and are so glad to see the increase in number of spaces in recent years. We really feel that the co-working arrangement can be customized for almost any group or niche and have enjoyed seeing all the innovative iterations over the years.Tereza – it is an interesting question about how to manage competition. I think there are many ways to do it and probably the answer depends on the industry or community but I think expectation setting is key. Our members know that we expect a collegial and peer like environment. No one has to pretend to have all the answers. We also make a distinction between best business practices and “the secret sauce” and for the most part people are quite comfortable indicating the boundary between what they are comfortable sharing and what they don’t.I think our members have been quite surprised to see how much they benefit from relationships with their would-be competitors. Their connection makes each hone their own focus and niche even more. Also it is instructive to see how similar companies can actually vary quite a lot in terms of business model or grow plans/trajectory.We have also seen that it is quite helpful for businesses of similar focus but different “ages” to work with each other…a sort of peer mentoring. There is a lot to gain for both the younger companies and the more established ones as they are often looking for quite different things.One thing that has been interesting to see…and something we were quite sure of when we started…was how co-working fits in to businesses over time. For some folks it is a solution that really makes sense at a particular stage and eventually they may outgrow the physical component (thought not necessarily the community one). however, we have also seen others adapt their growth plans in order to maintain co-working as a business practice so that they can continue to reap the benefits.If anyone out there is interested in starting an initiative, feel free to get in touch. We have benefited from relationships with other spaces and we look to collaborate and support others as well.- Adelaide Lancaster

  41. Mindaugas Danys

    encouraging article, I posted link on my wall: http://www.facebook.comHubVilnius – we plan to open this Fall the first coworking center in Vilnius, Lithuania.thanks!

  42. Dana Brandon Kreiss

    You can check out the Wix Lounge as well. It’s mostly geared toward creative professionals such as designers, photographers, and marketing consultants. They’ve got free coffee, wi-fi, couches, etc. Furthermore, there are free events hosted at the space every week. It’s sponsored by, the website editing platform. For more info, check out the Wix Lounge on Twitter: @WixLounge

  43. ShanaC

    Men are political animals- Aristotle.Question? Lets take this is a revolution in the way we work, and that Coworking will be the new model for small business housing in the next decade or so. Could coworking’s shared model also eventually mean shared health insurance groups, etc, as a way of cutting costs, or is that right now too expensive?(And congrats New Work City on your move…I may be able to stop by Sunday)

  44. Nick Rivadeneira

    Great post. I love coworking spaces and have gotten the chance to use one here in LA. Since I can’t afford membership just yet, I discovered a meetup that the Coloft holds one Thursday night per month. For $10 they allow you to come in for their after-hours (6pm-2am) and work. Seems like a great way to take in some extra revenue and spread the word. It would be cool if other coworking spaces implemented a similar meetup.

    1. raines

      I’ve seen after-hours coworking done at @NWC in NY and there’s one coming up soon at one of the early spaces, Citizen Space in SF, as well as (I believe) The Hub in SF. It can be a great way to get more people into the mix, and also as focussed time for members.

    2. Chris Dumler

      The event Nicholas brings up is called Startup Nights; a sort of biproduct of startup weekend for “ambitious nocturnals”. Coloft provides dinner (from that $10 cover) and people usually come in for one of three reasons: to work on their startup, to show their startup to others, or to hang out and meet people. All sorts of people show up too: developers, designers, lawyers, entrepreneurs, and VCs. It’s just good energy all around. But outside of the events, Coloft has a great community of startups and freelancers with a lot of cross-pollination on any given day. If you’re in the LA area you should swing by Coloft and say “hi”. It’s a fun place to be. for directions.

  45. Tereza

    It bears saying…to a great degree, AVC *is* my coworking space!

    1. Adrian Bye

      no.. it really isn’t.. you should spend some time in a coworking space.

      1. Tereza

        Adrian what’s your current location?When I looked into NWC in the past there were issues with easy proximity to GCT (from where I have an additional 90-min commute).For people like me proximity to subways that get us out of the city without transferring is key and could be a big selling point for you.My partner and I commute in from opposite directions (Westchester and Western NJ) so the sweet spot is flatiron or 30’s midtown. Also I’m the sales-focused founder so most of my meetings are midtown (agencies, publishers, F500’s) and part of what I need is that place to hang my hat between those meetings and be productive.

        1. Tony Bacigalupo

          Tereza, NWC used to be in SoHo/West Village which was awful to get to from GCT and the 456 line.Now it’s at Canal & Broadway and very easy to get to from the Canal St 6 train, as well as pretty much everything else. One of the main reasons we picked this spot was to be central to as much mass transit as possible, which is hugely important for independent folks.The new address is 412 Broadway, Floor 2.Shoot me a message if you have any other questions!Tony

  46. John Lewis

    Fred, I think it would be useful if you would create a post with your thoughts about incubators. I am in Paris (American and ex-NYC startup), where there are an unbelievable number of incubators. There is very strong government support for creating subsidized incubators. However, I do not see a large number of successful graduations.I thought it could be the difference in laws (funding instruments, leases, employment) that are much less startup friendly. Perhaps there are some common themes across all incubators.Accelerators seem to be more successful – is it because there is actual funding and sharp deadlines?I have been working with several groups that sponsor incubators and I would find your thoughts on the matter very useful. Thanks jhlewisjr

  47. Farhan Lalji

    Wonder if coworking could work for larger companies as well. Going into the office to see the same old same olds can be a bummer, coming in and seeing a bunch of different people from different industries might be really conducive to getting more creative ideas launched at a company – big or small.Seth wrote a post ages ago, saying goodbye to the office, that I think is pretty spot on –…I waxed on this a bit more when I first left Yahoo! earlier this year –

  48. Rahul Chaudhary

    I wanted to share with you guys about coworking visa. A coworking visa allows active members of one space, when traveling, to use another coworking space, gratis. Terms vary from space to space, with regard to hours of operation, reservation requirements, etc.Here is a link for further information,

  49. John Vitelli

    My business partner and I shared our office space. While the extra money helped offset costs for our small dev firm, the real benefit was having like-minded people around (we all happened to be developers in some form). It also meant I wasn’t the only one making coffee! I would recommend sharing space if you have it. We even made a site to make doing so easy.

  50. Alan Pinstein

    Atlanta has a couple of nice co-working spaces including Ignition Alley (where we work out of), 151 Locust, and Strongbox West.

  51. Douglas Crets

    You know, Fred is right. Starting up can be very lonely, as much as it is invigorating to have an idea put into action. One of the brightest entrepreneurial moments last month was when I talked to Tereza, who comments regularly here. Talk about a gust of fresh air, Category 4!That’s the kind of thing that makes being an entrepreneur awesome. As much as I would like to say it’s creating a product that someone wants, for me it’s really about meeting people as off the wall and rabid about new business ideas as I am, and getting inspired by them.Thanks, Fred. And Tereza!

    1. Tereza

      Awww, thanks Doug! Really enjoyed meeting you, too.Getting to know other entrepreneurs, via hatching ideas and converting them into usable stuff …and getting to know tons of customers, making them happy and thereby making good money, and changing the world along the way….what could possibly be more fun??

  52. markevans99

    I love the proliferation of co-working spaces; lots of value can be added on top of this model by the outside world engaging with startups at various points of a company’s development, i.e., bringing buyers and sellers together.Listening to what the customers want early and often, it would seem, would help drive real innovation and produce a quicker path to startup traction with real customers.

  53. Aaron J. Ruckman

    Great timing! We have a new coworking space in St. Louis (,… with an open house tonight 9/2 at 6pm. Wife and I are going to check it out. If any members of Fredland are planning to attend, please get in touch with me. Would love to meet you.

    1. raines

      Look for my St. Louis cohousing friends Tom and Carol there tonight – they are looking at some incubator-esque business models for part of their EcoVillage development: http://www.CulverWayCohousi

  54. Danielle Morrill

    Just wanted to chime in and mention that Twilio worked out of Pier 38 as our first office space, which is home to Dogpatch Labs SF and the True Ventures coworking space – as well as about 20 other startups renting space from (anchor tenant). Personally, I like that there were so many people around all the time — not just the team (which was 5 or 6 people at that time) and everyone was very supportive of the lifestyle (especially the long hours).When we moved into our office we moved Jambool, who we had be sharing space with since the beginning. Sadly (for us) they were acquired by the Google 4 months after we moved, and now we have a bunch of empty desks. Until we fill them up with Twilio team members (hey we’re hiring, email me [email protected]) consider this an open invite to come work out of our space here in SF!

  55. Chris Clark

    I recently helped launch a coworking/bare-bones incubator space in Charleston, SC – We’re a little different than many coworking space because we provide space for free. Really free. As in no-strings-attached free. We provide basic office amenities (internet, printer, conference line, whiteboards, break room) and an open floor plan for all the knowledge-sharing goodness Fred mentions. We’re slowly starting to layer in additional services, but on the coworking/incubator spectrum, we’re probably still more towards a coworking space.The goal of our space is to provide high-quality people with the best possible opportunity to growing their business successfully. Charleston is not exactly the first city that jumps to mind when you think of start-ups, but it’s a wonderful place to live. The focus here has always been on tourism, which creates jobs, but mostly of the minimum wage variety. There are many talented people who want to live here, but we need to have jobs that suit their skillsets and support their lifestyles. Creating those jobs is the goal of Spark Charleston.We are lucky to be backed by some very patient, and very generous capital and, while we will eventually have to find a way to generate revenue, can afford to our tenant companies grow. I’m happy to talk more with anyone who might be interested.

  56. Jarin Udom

    If you’re in San Diego, The HIVE ( is great and so successful that they just opened up a second location.

  57. The Network Hub

    Great post!!! It’s great to have someone like you to vouch for coworking for startups!

  58. Eric Marcoullier

    I’m a huge fan of coworking as long as there is some parity in terms of team sizes. When it’s one company with three people working out of a much larger company’s office, the smaller company feels like a guest. When the companies are of equal size, there’s a much stronger feeling of equality and that usually engenders more sharing and camaraderie.

  59. Prashant Sachdev

    I agree very strongly with this post especially”It can be more cost effective, but that is not the best reason to do it. You’ll get knowledge sharing, energy, and a lof of camraderie. And you can’t put a price on those things when you are doing a startup”We at are sharing our office space from day 1 and still have space to invite another startup! So budding entrepreneurs in Pune can definitely contact us. What’s more we also have open library for entrepreneurship development too 🙂

  60. jraby3

    I’m surprised not to here about Sunshine Suites ( in this article. Sunshine has been around in Manhattan for nine years, and basically started coworking before it was called coworking. I’m the Co-Founder and Managing Partner. Not to take anything away from Tony or NWC – they are terrific guys that run a great space.

  61. Zeshan Ghory

    Techhub launched recently in London and are really making an effort to go beyond just providing office space by hosting events like FB dev garage in the evenings. On the occasions that I’ve worked there I’ve had quite a few interesting conversations with people from other startups – and I think for these kind of spaces to succeed, it’s boosting this “enhanced serendipity” that’s the key.

  62. Regus

    As you mentioned Fred, cost-savings is among the key benefits of a shared office environment. One other benefit I would like to add is flexibility in terms of lease commitments and size. A big mistake a start-up can make is to lock into a long-term lease when they don’t know what their business needs will be in six months or a year. Regus is a global provider of flexible workplaces and has 18 locations throughout NYC, start-up who is looking for some free office space should enter our Show Us Your Office Contest – We want to hear from businesses that have challenging workspace conditions. The winning entry will receive a fully furnished and equipped office in the U.S. for one year.

  63. Alan Bernier

    we run a site called Rofo – for entrepreneurs seeking space. without question the greatest demand we see on the site is for small/shared/subleased spaces. starting in ’08 our business grew from starbucks to a conference room at a SF university to a low end shared space with startups to a nicer shared space that got expensive to a free subleased space from a large company that was struggling to our very own space.along the way we accomplished 2 things: kept the rent cheap and flexible and met many great entrepreneurs (a couple of them we eventually hired).

  64. Jascha

    We are working to start something similar in Los Angeles called Loomic Labs ( with a high focus on concepts behind helping to promote interaction between the startups in the program. I have been studying and researching idea maturation and techniques or environmental things that promote it.Fore more see –

  65. jonathanjaeger

    I was intrigued by New York Nightowls, which caters to the late-night NYCers who want some company (

  66. vruz

    hey, anybody coworking in or around London?

  67. Wesley Verhoeve

    A few months ago our little indie record label/artist development team joined a shared office space with an online portfolio company and a software company, and I couldn’t agree more with this post. I wasn’t sure how it would affect us, but my productivity level is up, and it’s much more fun to go to the office now. We couldn’t be more different as far as our services/products go, and I like it like that. It was a conscious choice to disassociate ourselves from the traditional music industry as far as our environment goes, and to avoid the negativity and doomsday thinking that has become very prevalent. Love it!

  68. Prokofy

    It’s ecstatic collectivism again, Fred.Brilliant ideas have to happen in solititude without distraction and without the tempation to copy or give into peer pressure.Lots of people making lots of APIs that are just a basic variation on the IRC channel isn’t really a big idea and there isn’t substance to it.What you are incubating is something, but it is isn’t innovation. It’s merely a technological facility for collectivizing faster. That’s not a positive thing.

    1. fredwilson

      i am reading steven johnson’s new book, Where Good Ideas Come Fromit will be out in early Octoberhe plows through a ton of research on this subject and it turns out mostgood ideas come from “collectivism” as you call itisolationism is a losing strategy if you want to come up with good ideas

  69. Geoff Mamlet

    Anyone passing through Cambridge is welcome to come check out the new Cambridge Coworking Center space, opening middle of September, in Kendall Square. We have about 50 people there now, working mostly in 1-2 person teams, with room for many more.For those who outgrow that setup, as several commenters have suggested, the Coworking Center is attached to Cambridge Innovation Center, home to close to 300 companies (mostly startups) of all sizes.What we hear again and again from the CEOs and entrepreneurs at C3 and at CIC is that there is significant value in being part of a community of entrepreneurs, sharing contacts, mentoring each other, trading tips, and feeding off the collective energy of other people who are also trying to change the world.

  70. Mark Essel

    I’ve had much better experience concentrating and coding in quiet environments that are low on distractions. Maybe other jobs are better with a background buzz, or I’m a minority voice?

    1. fredwilson

      i believe you are right to a degreei see a lot of coders with headphones on listening to (joke)when i visit coworking spaces

    2. Tereza

      You’re not alone. It’s a mature response as you are someone who’s shipped a bunch of product.My best ideas are alone when afforded the opportunity to synthesize what we met about, and then do it.And then we iterate back and forth.To me, hell is 3 people looking at a screen with one person “driving” at the keyboard while the others jump up saying “No this!”. “No that!”. Oy.That fine for a review of where we are and then dividing and conquering on immediate next steps.But unless you are doing a dry run of a coordinated sales pitch, singing in a choir or playing a team sport, for the most part your value-adding work is executed by a bunch of individual efforts, and the role of the manager is to tie them together or better, train them to be very clear on their handoffs to each other.In absence of that experience, sitting in a room together 24/7 is the next best thing.Remember team development is: form, norm, storm, perform.If you’ve been through the first 3, it’s time to perform.

    3. Tereza

      BTW I can’t imagine JLM wouldn’t agree with you on that.But he’s probably gone fishin’ today.

  71. Russ Marshalek

    Fred-as the social media director of Sunshine Suites (two offices, one in Noho and one in Tribeca), as well as a huge fan of your blog and commentary, I’d love the opportunity to show you around our coworking space!-Russ [email protected]

  72. JR

    I’ve always found that the secret to a good incubator (or co-working space) is a good manager. Kudos to Tony at NWC and Bruce at NYUPoly for doing a great job. The thing we are trying to figure out is what happens after the incubator, what’s the next step in the ecosystem. When they outgrow the co-working space, then what happens? How do we provide the next level of support and in what type of environment?

  73. Ross Hinkle

    LaunchPad in New Orleans is a great new co-working space as well. Recently moved in from my old NYC private equity gig to start a digital music business and the environment down here is bursting with ideas and momentum.

  74. Peter Beddows

    Another option for coworking space consideration perhaps. Possibilities go way beyond just software or web development: Evidently one can actually make tangible items and also include software components such as robotics if you have the idea and the mind for it.”TechShop” is the (possibly one is coming to your area soon) answer to co-working location. It is an Open-Access Public Workshop with various levels of membership pricing access. — So What Do You Want To Make?

  75. Mike Ragalie

    My startup does B2B software, so we spend a LOT of time on the phone doing sales and support. And that basically means we need to have a dedicated, semi-private and always available place for our Vonage and to take the calls.At least in SF, the cost for a private space within a coworking situation is 3-4x times what we can get on the normal commercial real estate market. (We’re in the 300-400 sq. ft. range at the moment.) Beyond that, most of the coworking environments I’ve seen are primarily hotel, which makes it difficult to work efficiently. (it’s a pain to have to set up and take down two 24-inch monitors and a tower everyday.) For those that offer permanent desk space (non-private), the cost there is about 1.5-2x what you can get on the commercial market, and for a much smaller area.We had a great coworking experience for the first year and a half out in Boston (it was at Harvard’s “Innovation Space”;…, but we haven’t been able to find anything affordable in SF that meets the semi-private call space + permanent non-private desk space requirements at a reasonable cost.

  76. Yardboy

    Frankly, I didn’t like his tone at all.

  77. fredwilson

    silence is golden

  78. reece

    woah! don’t know how that happened.sorry everyone.[i swear i’m just sending this one time].

  79. PeterisP

    Frankly, this is something that disqus could and should detect and prevent – also Fred himself has sometimes been seen getting double-posts this way, and there is no reason for a human to get involved to delete such posts as the software can easily detect duplicates.

  80. ShanaC

    I just want to know how this would work, mostly because I like food.

  81. Tereza

    Charlie I’m pretty sure I heard about some sort of food incubator/co-kitchen in Brooklyn. I think it may be partially city-funded.I heard about it on NPR.I believe it had a few benefits — including it satisifies City health code (it’s prohibively expensive for small business owners/caterers to get this). Industrial grade & size ovens, etc. So for example artisanal bakers can bake in scaled batches.They join the program and book time in the kitchen and then learn from each other.

  82. Peter Beddows

    Hmmm.. Having noticed comments by Carl Rahn Griffith referencing “Yorkshire” (above) and then your comment here Charlie about … in “Lancaster” my immediate thought was “terrific; things are really picking up in the UK!” only to then remember you mean Lancaster, PA.

  83. Tereza


  84. ShanaC

    :)Sounds interesting. If you ever get that off the ground, you should talk tothe people at Foodzie. They have an interesting platform for yummy food- itmay be a good match, and if not, they probably have excellent advice abouthow to market niche yummy things…

  85. ShanaC

    Check thine email.

  86. Peter Beddows

    Is it not interesting that there are 2 x Lancaster herein the US (CA & PA) but no York?I spent some time on projects based in Lancaster (love the Lake District) and in York (and the Yorkshire Moors) years ago: As best as I can now recall from my HS History, Lancaster and York, or rather the divided Royal House of the Plantagenets, fought over ascension to the throne of England in a series of battles that became known as The War Of The Roses because the sides were represented by red and white roses respectively. All settled by Henry VII who founded the Tudor Dynasty.However, while their respective castles may have been considered “co-working” spaces, the only thing incubated then was intense hostility and antagonism towards each other.I really like the explanation you offered to ShanaC regarding how you envisioned the Food Entrepreneurs co-working option.