Discovering the Benefits of Coworking at StartDock

StartDock Coworking in Amsterdam, Netherlands proves that the benefits of community and collaboration are priceless.
Since joining the crew at Cowork Unite, I’ve become well aware of the benefits of coworking and coliving spaces for freelancers. Whenever I try to share this with other people, though, I’m occasionally met with this reaction: “But I just don’t get why you would pay for a desk when you could just work from home? For free?” This is a fair argument, and I’ll admit I had the same thoughts as well before I started working here. What is the benefit of paying to stay in a shared office when you’re just starting out and desperately trying to save every penny? When I’m faced with this question, I now tell people about my experience at StartDock Coworking in Amsterdam. I arrived at StartDock’s beautiful central location ready to work. Cowork Unite was just on the cusp of being public and there was plenty to do in order to prepare. I was all set to just put my headphones in and tune the world out, like I used to do. I sat down to my desk in a room of four people whom, it turned out, were genuinely interested in what I was working on. And then they offered to help. It turns out, this is commonplace at StartDock. Founded on the ideals of collaboration, community, openness, cosiness and accessibility, this coworking space’s main mission isn’t just to fill empty desk chairs. They want to see the people who come through their door experience the benefits of coworking by being a member of their community and growing something beautiful. They want to be a part of fostering that success, even if it means they may not be able to automatically admit just anyone that shows up. “We didn’t want to just be another coworking space filled with rows of developers wearing headphones tapping away on their keyboards,” Said Thom Wernke, one of StartDock’s cofounders. Instead, they want to ensure an eclectic mix of professionals at any given time, keeping tabs on what skillsets they’re missing and what they’re beginning to have an overabundance of. This way, there’s always someone around with a fresh perspective or a much-needed talent. They also host a daily lunch that members can participate in, bringing its community together for simply an hour to spark conversation and build relationships. During my two days at StartDock, I was provided insights from a blogger, WordPress Developer, community engager, graphic designer and Javascript developer. Each person was able to point out something different, and within 48 hours I had a whole slew of information to pass along to the rest of the Cowork Unite team—something I would never have been able to accomplish if I’d strictly been working from home. Coworking spaces are places for people to connect, to learn, to flourish—not just for the established businessman, but for the tiny startup as well. StartDock Coworking is at the forefront of this new wave of professional development, and I know they will enable the success many of their own in the future. So, if you’re unsure about what the benefits of coworking might be, just head on over to StartDock to find out for yourself.

Kristen Ray
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