Don’t settle for renting or leasing an office when you can get so much more. As an entrepreneur, you can feel completely alone when you’re starting or growing a business. In the first business that I started, I felt as though I was the only one going through the challenges of hiring, doing way too much work, micromanaging, keeping the books, finding funding, running the business, etc. Given all of this, I had a lot of anxiety and drama running through my head, which was actually more perceived than real. It didn’t matter because it wasn’t productive. The first office I rented was a tiny but seemingly affordable box behind a dishwasher in the South Bronx. This physical separation from most life in New York City only contributed to my feeling of isolation and being alone. Without sounding too cliché, I just want to say that if you’re feeling the same as I did, you’re not alone! Not at all.
This is why I want to highlight the importance of finding a “community” – a work environment where you can grow and share experiences and resources to build a great business. So, if you’re thinking about renting an office – or your work environment in general – join an incubator or find a community work space geared toward entrepreneurs. If you’re a sole practitioner or in the early stages of growth, these environments can really the provide support you need, especially the psychological support to keep you inspired so you don’t go completely bonkers. The shared energy between entrepreneurs is infectious.
There are many shared workspaces, incubators and community workspaces for entrepreneurs sprouting up all over the country. Many are geared toward specific industries, like high tech, or demographic segments, such as women. I recently met a dynamic and inspirational serial entrepreneur, Amy Abrams. She is the founder of In Good Company, an incubator for women entrepreneurs. She’s created an incredibly flexible and affordable offering to meet the demands of a growing business – full and part-time offices, meeting rooms, and a variety of amenities including WiFi, copying, and printing. And, of course, bottomless coffee, tea & filtered water too! At Wicked Start, we rent from WeWork, a similar service to Amy’s but not gender or industry specific. What I love about the WeWork environment is the energy, design and organization. I also have the flexibility to use meeting rooms across New York City and soon San Francisco, where I do some business.
There are many more incubators that can actually help you develop and grow your business. We’ve compiled a list of some of the top ones in the country. Check it out.
If you have any comments or additional incubators that should be included, let us know!