As I was greeted by the supervisor for my internship at Cowork Frederick, I had no idea what to expect. Just typing this out I realize how clichéd that sounds, but honestly, I wasn’t sure what the draw to a Coworking community was at all. I just understood that this was an environment that will satisfy my required internship hours, and potentially a place to network with people who may be nice enough to employ an almost entirely inexperienced, soon-to-be college graduate like myself. However, after my first day had concluded I figured I had a pretty good handle on Coworking and I’m realizing more potently that Cowork Frederick is something I really want to be a part of.
Cowork Frederick is a member-based community of professionals who come together essentially to, well…. work together. Sounds simple. Why do this? Well, these members might be here to work outside of an office environment, avoid a commute, or they might just be interested in the prospect of working around other professionals. Members at Cowork have said that simply being around other professionals while working may enhance their creativity, give them new ideas, and make them feel less isolated while working. While this may be a little hard to understand, I think this quote from an Entrepeneur.com article sums up good Coworking quite well:
“A great co-working space is a collection of minds inspired by the brand that brought them together.”
The Coworking experience is when individuals who value the informal exchange of thoughts and ideas come together in a workplace. It also allows for easier networking for start-ups and the added bonus of bringing the much needed social aspect to your work life. Cowork spaces also provide the basics for you: internet access, office supplies, printers, fax machines, etc. So, essentially all there is to do in order for a successful Cowork Frederick work session, is to bring your laptop or tablet, sit down, and be willing to inspire or be inspired. That’s it.
What makes Cowork Frederick unique, and an exciting prospect for me to get involved with, is the members that make up the community. Cowork Frederick members may be cut from the same cloth idealistically, however, they come from many different career paths. I had the pleasure of meeting Matt Edens on my first day, a writer and member of Cowork Frederick since they opened. Edens has done a number of projects writing for television and print including writing for The History Channel, Food Network, The Frederick Gorilla, and The Frederick News Post. Just getting to be around someone with such experience is exciting because not only is it interesting fodder for conversation, but since Edens has joined the Cowork Frederick community I understand his willingness to share ideas that might help me on my career path. Cowork Frederick’s members also include graphic designers, social media specialists, and public relations experts. Now that I’m involved in the community, I have a host of opportunities to network with professionals in different fields relevant to my interests in communications and writing.
Writer’s block is something I experience frequently, and the easiest solution to writer’s block is to take a break and talk to someone. Their unique perspective on how to solve my problem could be all I need to turn my article from bland and uninteresting to fresh and exciting. Coming to Cowork, I understand that this must be a community of people who embrace this informal exchange of ideas and information. These are people who want to educate and be educated. This kind of environment is the type I look forward to involving myself in. I get energy from learning new things and trading ideas. And it doesn’t have to be as structured as sitting down and brainstorming on my specific problem. Snippets of conversation, jokes, even the nuance of speech someone uses might inspire the next thing I write. And hey, maybe I’ll even get a few contacts out of the whole experience, but this is not so much what I’m looking forward to anymore. The thing I look forward to most now is being involved with the exchange. All I have to do to get the most of my time here at Cowork Frederick is to do what every member here does, listen and learn.