For the past few years, co-working groups, organizations and spaces have popped up across Dayton with intention to bring together entrepreneurs, freelancers and small business owners in an inspired work environment that encourages collaboration and cohabitation.
Local entrepreneur Lisa Von De Linde, owner of graphic design studio LisaVdesigns, shared with us her perspective on co-working and how she uses it in her business. Having been in Dayton for the past seven years (after relocating from her home in Minnesota), she’s seen the start and expansion of co-working in Dayton.
“After starting my own business, I heard a lot about co-working spaces in other bigger cities and wished Dayton had something like what I kept reading about,” Von De Linde said.
HOW TO TRY CO-WORKING
Upcoming co-working events:
Feb. 15, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Creative Co-Work at the Dayton Metro Library, 215 E. Third St.
Feb. 23, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fourth Friday at @444, 444 E. Second St.
Nucleus CoShare, 411 E. 5th St.
Opal & Fern, 400 Linden Ave. Suite 202
The Collaboratory, 33 N. Main St.
BENEFITS OF CO-WORKING
Now that Dayton does have these kinds of opportunities, positive impact is indomitable. With a few different “definitions” of co-working, there’s an option that fits any individual need or curiosity. Von De Linde gave us a basic rundown on the different types of co-working. It may look like working outside of a dedicated office; meeting up at a coffee shop or library; attending an event in a reserved space dedicated to co-working; or renting a desk or dropping into a dedicated space for co-working.
“As a small business owner, getting to know other local entrepreneurs and build mutually beneficial relationships is always a plus. Making time for co-working opportunities has allowed me to connect with so many talented Dayton entrepreneurs,” Von De Linde said.
Chelsea Hall, a Dayton-based photographer, is the co-owner of co-working space Opal & Fern. She is also the co-work chair for the Dayton chapter of international creative entrepreneur group Rising Tide. In this position, Hall dedicates a space once a month to host the group’s members in a co-working environment.
“Our attendees are typically creative small business owners that either work from home or an office space, who are looking to get out and socialize, or bounce ideas off other business-minded individuals.” Hall said. With that idea of like-minded individuals, Hall goes on to explain the positive impact of co-working for herself and in the group.
“[Through our group] we have all met individuals in the community that we would have never met in ‘real life,’ and I believe that has given every business owner involved a better outlook on Dayton and the community we have. I believe it has also helped to grow our small businesses. Through spreading education and believing that community is more important than competition, we've been able to elevate all the businesses that come to our meetings and co-work events.” Hall said.
With the growth of opportunity and interest in co-working, it seems as though co-working is evolving from “trend” to solution.
“With more and more individuals opting to run their own small businesses each year, especially in Dayton, we are in need of a place to socialize and be around others who are understanding of entrepreneurial hardships. I think the socialization aspect and having a creative ‘think tank’ atmosphere that helps to grow businesses and deeply root them in their city, will keep this going strong.” said Hall.