"Business rules are changing in today's workplaces. There are more freelancers, contractors and remote workers, flexible schedules, even remote equipment. And offices? What offices? Depending on your work, you can be almost anywhere.
But sometimes you still need the camaraderie or conference room. And that's the idea behind coworking.
Coworking is the use of a shared business space by unrelated individuals and companies. American coworking started in 2005 in San Francisco. The concept has been building for the last 10 years, evolving to include child care and health care in some parts of the country. The model has been popular in major cities like New York, where office space is expensive to lease, and the phenomenon is making its way to suburban regions like Westchester. (It's not in Rockland yet; we searched.)"
While I agree with Mayor Bloomberg that "being on a conference call isn't the same as standing at the water cooler," there is another option in addition to working at home or working in a traditional office. Co-working spaces - shared office spaces for independent and remote workers.
The days of employees showing up at the office from 9 to 5 every day are over. Now, whether they are employed at a Fortune 500 company or the entrepreneur of a start-up, professionals are seeking a work space solution that is inspiring, flexible and cost-effective, with all the amenities of a modern, well-appointed office.
The Third Annual Salute to the County's Most Successful Female Business Owners
Take a look at some of the most successful companies around the County, and you’ll find that behind their success are some of the most accomplished women. In the following pages, you’ll meet 16 women with outstanding drive, talent, and vision—women who’ve helped create a thriving business community here in Westchester. It’s a diverse group, encompassing four separate categories: entrepreneurs, for those who’ve broken out on their own and established their own businesses; executives, for those who’ve risen through the ranks and broken the proverbial glass ceiling of some of the most well-known companies around; nonprofit, for those who helm some of the County’s most successful nonprofit organizations; and government, for those who continue to help shape the public sector.
From Lawyers to Screenwriters, and Everything In Between: Welcome to W@tercooler
Today, there are about 2,500 co-working spaces globally, and over 80 in New York City alone. Yet, despite the concept's numbers, most people still have no clue what co-working truly is. A few years ago, Tarrytown's Jenifer Ross was one of these at-home workers. As a consultant, Ross had the flexibility to make her own hours, and work from anywhere. But Ross missed a sense of community and creativity that you get when working around others.
Downtown Tarrytown is a Dynamic Draw for Jenifer Ross
Tarrytown is a village, like most, made up of many different neighborhoods, from The Crest to Wilson Park. Then there's downtown, which is where Jenifer Ross spends most of her time. Her business, W@tercooler is in the thick of things, a short stroll from Main Street.
Americans love telecommuting. We know it's supposed to save on corporate overhead and boost productivity. We don't care. Not as long as there are leaves to rake, clothes to fold, pajamas to wear at noon, decks on which to work at sunset. (Watch the video!)
Co-Working at the W@tercooler Gives Freelancers an Office to Engage and Connect
For those who are still bound to an office and an overseer, coworkers can either be a distraction to your work or not, may add something to your day or not. On the other hand, if you freelance the office space you occupy at home means a share of nothing but distractions - the fridge, TV, the doorbell and the accumulating laundry. You don't even get the chance to regather your thirst (or sensibilities) among the animate - unless you own a dog. But Tarrytown does actually have a water cooler of its own that brings independent workers the best of both worlds.
"Coworking spaces have sprung up across the country, offering affordable desks for freelancers, independent contractor and one- or two-person companies that aren't big enough to sign a long-term office lease".
Westchester's Most Innovative Businesses: W@tercooler - Tarrytown
Imagining Suburban Shared Workspace
The hot, new urban trend of shared workspace where freelancers and other work-from-anywhere types band together to rent access to cubicles, printers, conference rooms, and break-room chatter had been slow to gain momentum in the suburbs. But that was before Sleepy Hollow resident Jenifer Ross customized her Tarrytown business, W@tercooler, and brought the trend home.
Jenifer Ross owner of W@tercooler, a coworking space in Tarrytown, NY, recently profiled in Entrepreneur Magazine, says the most common error that coworking managers and owners make is building it and assuming people will just come... It takes a ton of educating, promoting and enticing folks into the space, as well as the member management, business management, PR, and the list goes on. Hillman adamantly agrees, "Unfortunately, there aren't community elves who are looking for new coworking spaces to make communities in -- it's an intentional process. Counterintuitively, it's even harder to build community once you've got an empty space."