We started with a community first and then got a space. The members were involved on the early decisions of the space, the location, and what our vision was from the very start. The space was just a gather spot for the community that was already formed. Three years later this has had beneficial rippling effects that continues to form our culture.
We give high-fives and are open about it. We tell people up front that we are a group of smart and friendly people that want to get to know you. We introduce people, say hey to them, and aren’t afraid to give a high-five. It’s amazing how a simple introduction and a morning hello opens people up. I, as the community manager, also like to celebrate victories community members may have.
The coworkers create casual social activities for a break in work. We play yards games. They are a great casual social activity that lasts about 10 to 15 minutes and doesn’t require too much skill. We found this activity to be the best catalyst to creating a community. Friday’s take-yourself-to-lunch events are very popular too. None of these activities are required and people should feel pressure to participate, but it’s sets a signal of openness that is carried throughout the space.
We listen to the community for events. We hosting monthly(ish) educational meetings decided by the community. The most recent guests are lawyers, financial planners, website builders, and health insurers for independents. We only do events when the community states a desire for one or interest in a topic that is brought forward. There have been too many times we hosted many events during the week and it was disturbing for the community.
Coworking Voices Roundtable. This is a community meeting where we discuss policies of the space and brainstorm ways that we can be a better community to make us professionally and personally stronger. This is a more formal way for us to evaluate how we are doing things and to let the community vote on changes.
Assume yes. Creative Density should feel like your work clubhouse. We get the barriers out of the way so once people come in they can get comfortable and hopefully leave their signature on the space. We want the community to form the space. Can I hang up a poster here? Yes. Can I host my bookclub after hours? Yes. Can we I hang a sign about starting a mastermind group? Yes. Can I have a candle? No…sorry.