Events are being cancelled or delayed left and right. Schools and churches are closed. In the State of Maryland, Governor Hogan just ordered all restaurants, bars, movie theaters and gyms closed. Recommendations for “Social distancing” and fastidious hand-washing abound.
To cowork or not to cowork, that is the question
These are uncertain times. You might be asking yourself, “Should I go to my coworking space?” That’s a question you’ll need to answer for yourself after doing research and considering the specifics of your situation.
Coworking spaces around the world have stepped up cleaning procedures, posted signs about hand washing, and suspended activities that could put people at increased risk. Some, especially spaces that are large and bring lots of people together in fairly close quarters, have temporarily closed their doors.
So what if working at home doesn’t really work for you? What’s a person to do? What follows is information from us so you can decide if you want to cowork with us, whether you’re a member of Cowork Frederick or are looking to escape working at home with a Day Pass.
Here’s what Cowork Frederick is doing.
We’re staying open.
As of this moment, our plan is to stay open. A number of our members have asked (begged?) us do what we can to keep coworking an option for them. This is where being the “corner coffee shop” version of coworking spaces plays in our favor. We rarely have more than 20 people in our space at any given time. That said, we identified some things we could do to limit risk. Read on.
Only individually wrapped snacks are OK in the break room – no bringing in baked goodies to share, no cookie jars. The Community Room where larger meetings/events might be held, is not available to rent for the next 30 days. Lastly, our dog-friendly policy is also temporarily suspended. The latest from the CDC says there is no evidence that pets spread COVID-19. This is a “playing it safe” move.
We’re cleaning surfaces daily, with extra attention to places hands touch like doorknobs and faucet handles. Dishes are washed in the dishwasher (which uses extra hot water) nightly (no more waiting for the dishwasher to be full). Hand towels are removed daily, and washed in extra hot water with bleach, before being returned. Until further notice, napkins and tissues go in the trash, which is taken out nightly, not the compost bins. We also placed sanitizing wipes around the building so you can wipe down your work area.
We opened the first floor of the 120 building up for coworking to give you more room to spread out. That means there are now 10 spots where you can work 6+ feet away from others.
Events expected to draw more than 20 people have been postponed or cancelled.
- 04/04 Frederick Artists Night is cancelled
- 03/18 AAF Huddle “Common Mistakes New Freelancers Make” is postponed
- 03/22 Frederick Game Jam Showcase is postponed.
As of now, Open Coworking Day (04/03) is still on. Please check our event calendar for updates .
Encouraging online engagement
To mitigate the impact of being home, possibly alone, a lot, members of Cowork Frederick can still connect online through our “virtual water cooler”. Our usual “Nailed It!”, “Member chat room” and “One Thing” channels are available and we just added a “Coping with Corona” chat.
Here’s what you can do.
If you decide to come in to cowork with us as a member or as a Day Pass guest, please do the things we’ve always asked members and guest to do:
- Take care of yourself.
- Take care of each other.
- Take care of the space.
Here are specifics for how that plays out now:
- If you don’t feel well – even if you don’t think its COVID-19 – don’t come in. Stay home.
- If you have any reason to believe you’ve been exposed – same. Stay home.
- Wash your hands often – and properly.
- Wipe down your work space with the wipes we have posted around the building.
- Be supportive of others – share tips and encouragement.
- Give your “High Fives” online.
This farewell phrase seems especially appropriate now. We send wishes that all are well and that these trying times pass quickly. Be safe. Be smart. Be supportive. Stay tuned. We’ll post an update if any of the above changes. If you have any questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.