Is it possible for a space manager to leave for 2 weeks? What should I do to prepare?

Hello,

I run a small co-working space in a big city - it’s around 20 members who are mostly monthly members who let themselves in using a phone app. I’m the only person managing the space - it’s small.

BUT - I need to go overseas for 2 weeks - I’m worried about new people coming to the space and not being able to show them the space and make sure they’re okay. Should I create a way to an automated system to add more people or should I hire someone to manage the space while I’m gone? Would it be reasonable to establish someone as a “community manager” and compensate them with the use of the space? The space doesn’t make a ton of money, so any wages could make the space unsustainable.

Any recommendations? (I need to get away!)

Best!

-David

Not only is it possible - it’s important :slight_smile: right now, it sounds like your “bus factor” is high, as in how bad things would be if you got hit by a bus besides the obvious terribleness of being hit by a bus. Time to work on that.

Truth be told, MOST folks in your position have dangerously high bus factors even when they aren’t the only one doing the job :slight_smile:

There’s a bunch of different ways to approach this, but with a tight-knit community like yours this can be especially awesome for having your members feel an even greater sense of “shared ownership” in a less formal sense.

Rather than try to establish a single community manager, I would look for ways to deputize the specific things that need doing on a daily basis and invite folks to sign up to help take care of things while you’re gone. Giving people specific things they can help take care of really helps.

In a lot of cases, people are happy to step up if you invite them to…especially if it’s something in the space they are personally invested in and get a lot of value from. People take care of stuff they care about. Funny that, eh? :slight_smile:

Think of this as a potentially valuable operational exercise -

First, take the opportunity to self-audit all of the things that need to happen, and how they get done. end up with a big 'ol list of things you do to keep things running smoothly.

Next give each item a score of 1, 2, 3, or 4. If an item is a 1, it means that it can only be done by you. If an item a 2, it can be done by somebody else but transferring the knowledge/skills/resources to them would be a fair bit of work. If an item is a 3, it can easily be done by somebody else in the community. And finally, if an item is a 4, it’s something that people already help with, even if it’s not consistent.

Start with 4s. They’re low hanging fruit, all it takes is asking for help.

Then look at 3s, and figure out which things are most valuable/important. Prioritize them.

With 2s, think hard about who your potential backup “deputies” could be. You need to trust them, and they need to know that you trust them. You’re going to invest time in sharing with them, so make it worth it.

If you’ve done a good job, you don’t have many 1s. If you DO have a lot of 1s…be honest with yourself, do you really have to be the one who does it, or do you just prefer it that way? A lot of the people unnecessarily treat elements of their jobs as 1s…when they’re really opportunities to federate and share.

Final thought here, I’m gonna borrow a term I learned from Joy Stephan (who hangs out on this list - hi Joy!): remember the difference between “volunteering” and “voluntelling” - your goal here isn’t to tell folks “I need to you to do XYZ” but instead “hey…could anybody lend a hand?”

This isn’t gonna happen overnight, and there will be bumps in the road. The best part when you get back is you’ll learn a) how most things are fine without you and b) what ISN’T fine without you…and then you can prioritize making that depend less on you. It’s scary…but so liberating on the other side, I promise. :slight_smile:

Good luck!

···

The #1 mistake in community building is doing it by yourself.

Better Coworkers: http://indyhall.org

Weekly Coworking Tips: http://coworkingweekly.com

My Audiobook: https://theindyhallway.com/ten

On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 3:25 AM, David Hamilton [email protected] wrote:

Hello,

I run a small co-working space in a big city - it’s around 20 members who are mostly monthly members who let themselves in using a phone app. I’m the only person managing the space - it’s small.

BUT - I need to go overseas for 2 weeks - I’m worried about new people coming to the space and not being able to show them the space and make sure they’re okay. Should I create a way to an automated system to add more people or should I hire someone to manage the space while I’m gone? Would it be reasonable to establish someone as a “community manager” and compensate them with the use of the space? The space doesn’t make a ton of money, so any wages could make the space unsustainable.

Any recommendations? (I need to get away!)

Best!

-David

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Hey David!

For a community of that size, I’m hoping you’ve got a pretty good relationship going with at least a few of your members, yes?

It sounds like you’ve oriented the space to be as low-maintenance as possible, so I could see one or several of your most trusted members being willing to step up to keep an eye on things.

It’s also quite common to offer free memberships to folks in exchange for taking a few shifts at the front desk.

I’ve got a template for this I can share with you, if you’re interested.

Generally speaking, I think the answer (as it often is) comes back to simply talking to your own members about it. There’s a good chance they’ll think of something you haven’t yet. Plus, involving them in the process will help ensure they’re supportive of helping you figure out how to leave town.

People love to feel included!

Tony

···

On Mon, Feb 13, 2017 at 1:25 PM, David Hamilton [email protected] wrote:

Hello,

I run a small co-working space in a big city - it’s around 20 members who are mostly monthly members who let themselves in using a phone app. I’m the only person managing the space - it’s small.

BUT - I need to go overseas for 2 weeks - I’m worried about new people coming to the space and not being able to show them the space and make sure they’re okay. Should I create a way to an automated system to add more people or should I hire someone to manage the space while I’m gone? Would it be reasonable to establish someone as a “community manager” and compensate them with the use of the space? The space doesn’t make a ton of money, so any wages could make the space unsustainable.

Any recommendations? (I need to get away!)

Best!

-David

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Alex, I super-like how you wrote that. The 1 2 3 4 is a great system, it gives words to what I've been observing the past few months without words for it, many things went from 1 and 2 to 4 once our second membership location opened; two is easier than one.

I'd be curious, what are 1's? I think nothing is a 1 except being oneself/being fully human/sharing of oneself/being assertive/asking and making what one very much wants.

Thanks Alex :slight_smile: that exercise is adapted from the community masterclass that Tony, Adam and I designed a few years back.

Genuine “1s” in this case are generally pretty limited, like you said. Operationally, it can include ownership & authorizations that aren’t readily shareable without major changes to the org. Naturally this depends heavily on how you set up your org in the first place :slight_smile:

Curious what you mean by “two is easier than one”? Do you mean that by having to run two spaces, you’re essentially forced to federate/delegate more?

-Alex

···

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 3:52 PM, Alex Linsker [email protected] wrote:

Alex, I super-like how you wrote that. The 1 2 3 4 is a great system, it gives words to what I’ve been observing the past few months without words for it, many things went from 1 and 2 to 4 once our second membership location opened; two is easier than one.

I’d be curious, what are 1’s? I think nothing is a 1 except being oneself/being fully human/sharing of oneself/being assertive/asking and making what one very much wants.

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The #1 mistake in community building is doing it by yourself.

Better Coworkers: http://indyhall.org

Weekly Coworking Tips: http://coworkingweekly.com

My Audiobook: https://theindyhallway.com/ten

Hi Tony,

I’d love to have a copy of your template as well. I’m in a similar situation myself - and I was also seeking feedback from others on this forum about a basic guideline to using Nexudus as well (if anyone has created such a guideline other than the Nexudus help forum you can find online).

Thanks!

Lauren McDaniel

[email protected]

···

On Monday, February 20, 2017 at 10:58:27 AM UTC-7, Tony Bacigalupo wrote:

Hey David!

For a community of that size, I’m hoping you’ve got a pretty good relationship going with at least a few of your members, yes?

It sounds like you’ve oriented the space to be as low-maintenance as possible, so I could see one or several of your most trusted members being willing to step up to keep an eye on things.

It’s also quite common to offer free memberships to folks in exchange for taking a few shifts at the front desk.

I’ve got a template for this I can share with you, if you’re interested.

Generally speaking, I think the answer (as it often is) comes back to simply talking to your own members about it. There’s a good chance they’ll think of something you haven’t yet. Plus, involving them in the process will help ensure they’re supportive of helping you figure out how to leave town.

People love to feel included!

Tony

**

New Work CitiesCoworking.org

Inline image 8http://twitter.com/tonybgoodehttp://facebook.com/tonybacigalupohttp://linkedin.com/in/tonybacigalupoInline image 1

On Mon, Feb 13, 2017 at 1:25 PM, David Hamilton [email protected] wrote:

Hello,

I run a small co-working space in a big city - it’s around 20 members who are mostly monthly members who let themselves in using a phone app. I’m the only person managing the space - it’s small.

BUT - I need to go overseas for 2 weeks - I’m worried about new people coming to the space and not being able to show them the space and make sure they’re okay. Should I create a way to an automated system to add more people or should I hire someone to manage the space while I’m gone? Would it be reasonable to establish someone as a “community manager” and compensate them with the use of the space? The space doesn’t make a ton of money, so any wages could make the space unsustainable.

Any recommendations? (I need to get away!)

Best!

-David

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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When space owners / managers post jobs for “community managers / leads : tumlers etc etc” how many applications to you get?

100’s or 3?

···

The #1 mistake in community building is doing it by yourself.

Better Coworkers: http://indyhall.org

Weekly Coworking Tips: http://coworkingweekly.com

My Audiobook: https://theindyhallway.com/ten

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 3:52 PM, Alex Linsker [email protected] wrote:

Alex, I super-like how you wrote that. The 1 2 3 4 is a great system, it gives words to what I’ve been observing the past few months without words for it, many things went from 1 and 2 to 4 once our second membership location opened; two is easier than one.

I’d be curious, what are 1’s? I think nothing is a 1 except being oneself/being fully human/sharing of oneself/being assertive/asking and making what one very much wants.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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Lauren, the doc is on its way to you!

I loved that macabre “Bus Factor” exercise from the Masterclass! Also maybe my favorite illustration in the whole series :slight_smile:

···

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 9:31 AM, Bernie J Mitchell [email protected] wrote:

When space owners / managers post jobs for “community managers / leads : tumlers etc etc” how many applications to you get?

100’s or 3?

On Tue, 21 Feb 2017 at 13:41, Alex Hillman [email protected] wrote:

Thanks Alex :slight_smile: that exercise is adapted from the community masterclass that Tony, Adam and I designed a few years back.

Genuine “1s” in this case are generally pretty limited, like you said. Operationally, it can include ownership & authorizations that aren’t readily shareable without major changes to the org. Naturally this depends heavily on how you set up your org in the first place :slight_smile:

Curious what you mean by “two is easier than one”? Do you mean that by having to run two spaces, you’re essentially forced to federate/delegate more?

-Alex

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Have a remarkable day

Bernie J Mitchell
0777 204 2012

Do you use Trello?
www.berniejmitchell.com

Sent from my mobile device

*Unless we agree otherwise, this email conversation is confidential.

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The #1 mistake in community building is doing it by yourself.

Better Coworkers: http://indyhall.org

Weekly Coworking Tips: http://coworkingweekly.com

My Audiobook: https://theindyhallway.com/ten

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 3:52 PM, Alex Linsker [email protected] wrote:

Alex, I super-like how you wrote that. The 1 2 3 4 is a great system, it gives words to what I’ve been observing the past few months without words for it, many things went from 1 and 2 to 4 once our second membership location opened; two is easier than one.

I’d be curious, what are 1’s? I think nothing is a 1 except being oneself/being fully human/sharing of oneself/being assertive/asking and making what one very much wants.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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I cannot speak for Alex but that was surely my experience. Just like having kids, once you have two you must accept the reality that you cannot be all things to both of them all the time, unless you do not sleep or have managed bilocation. And when you get to three it’s Kitty bar the door.

I leave the country every year for at least six weeks, so this came up early for us and had to be factored in. But I think one of the most important things about running a business – or being part of a community actually – is the notion that everyone is replaceable including me. If they are not I think i am doing it wrong.

This may also be traceable to a high tolerance for uncertainty and a form conviction that there are few things that cannot be corrected after they go terribly wrong . :slight_smile:

There are several 1’s in running this group we have here, but few of them require my physical presence at any given moment.

···

On Tuesday, February 21, 2017 at 2:41:54 PM UTC+1, Alex Hillman wrote:

Thanks Alex :slight_smile: that exercise is adapted from the community masterclass that Tony, Adam and I designed a few years back.

Genuine “1s” in this case are generally pretty limited, like you said. Operationally, it can include ownership & authorizations that aren’t readily shareable without major changes to the org. Naturally this depends heavily on how you set up your org in the first place :slight_smile:

Curious what you mean by “two is easier than one”? Do you mean that by having to run two spaces, you’re essentially forced to federate/delegate more?

-Alex


The #1 mistake in community building is doing it by yourself.

Better Coworkers: http://indyhall.org

Weekly Coworking Tips: http://coworkingweekly.com

My Audiobook: https://theindyhallway.com/ten

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 3:52 PM, Alex Linsker [email protected] wrote:

Alex, I super-like how you wrote that. The 1 2 3 4 is a great system, it gives words to what I’ve been observing the past few months without words for it, many things went from 1 and 2 to 4 once our second membership location opened; two is easier than one.

I’d be curious, what are 1’s? I think nothing is a 1 except being oneself/being fully human/sharing of oneself/being assertive/asking and making what one very much wants.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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I've done it many times without issue. Just tell your members and ask them to help. If there's anybody who you know is more willing, talk to tgem directly.

Ramon
Author of coworkinghandbook.com

Yes, having two places made it easier to federate/localize. “Subsidiarity” is the word for that, which Charles Handy writes about (and luckily some of our members were familiar with and could expect, otherwise it wouldn’t have happened!)

I don’t delegate by making requests nowadays; I write emails to our Google Group with feedback from the weekly member meetings, conveying the requests or the voting results from members. So members delegate to members; they step up and make happen what they very much want. And members sometimes delegate to me; but we have proxy agency, not collective agency, when I do too much of things.

Here’s an example of ‘delegating’ from a month ago – the part about the ‘paradox’ is the most important part, and many people have expressed appreciation and said it helped a lot to see:

"At the weekly open member meeting at Collective Agency Division today, we decided Thursday February 16th will be the next happy hour here. It’ll start at 4:30pm.

The goal is for members to talk in a non-work setting, and you can bring anyone you want. It’s potluck style.

There were also requests for more music again and more conversations among people here at Division; that’s the default. If anyone very much wants to change that, send me an email with the suggestion for a new default, and I’ll put it to a member vote, otherwise the music is on if anyone wants it on. There’ve been requests for more classical music, which is the default, and for more ambient music, which is not the default, and not for jazz. So please turn on the stereo/iPad the way we turn on the lights and heat. The music on that app does turn off if the internet flickers for a second, so turn it back on if that happens.

Almost all members have said:

  • they like when someone starts talking to them anytime,

  • like when they hear more conversations other people are having with other people here!,

  • and don’t want to interrupt anyone talking who’s working,

  • but like being interrupted (such is the paradox).

Most members prefer to have conversations in the morning or during lunch or after 5pm. If you want to see specifically people’s preferences, the member bios on the wall say that. And members are good at saying they’re busy or don’t want to talk.

And Thursday February 23rd will be the happy hour party at Collective Agency NW, it’ll start at 5pm."

···

Other notes (this feels like a separate email):

I think this is the best thing: http://collectiveagency.co/governance-guidelines/ Since drafting it about 6 months ago, we don’t talk about anything in the weekly meetings that anyone doesn’t very much want, while being considerate of what other people very much want. It lets people self-delegate.

We talked about it before we opened the second location; did we need someone paid at each place? And I’d already stopped having employees about a year ago, because members are more active here socially and civically without employees (and we don’t do barter or trade; everyone pays the same rates, no exceptions). And what excited me most about a second location was, would we have two self-governing communities, each with their own culture and decisions (and a lot of overlap between the two), and how would collective agency be with only members there at one location almost all the time?

I’m at each location for our weekly optional member meeting from 2-230pm (which is where applied civics happens; it’s based on the democratic free school weekly meetings). And I still show up in person for part of the day most of the time when someone tries us out. And I show up at most member events, like happy hour, although I definitely don’t see myself as leading that anymore. And I do finances and order supplies and am the liaison for requests to the building managers and am the main person in charge of marketing (although a lot of members view themselves as essential to marketing now, which was definitely not the view 4 years ago), and if someone wonders how to approach a concern, I’m available to give tips based on what’s worked (but if it’s new, I suggest we bring it to the weekly meeting). But otherwise members do everything on-site, especially conversations and culture and helping out (which I think we used to call “staffing” or “community manager”). Two locations was a push for me to either automate or stop doing the boring tasks, and with all the admin, my question was, how can I make two membership locations less work total and less cost total, and more members and more money at each location, than one location? And that’s fun. Now we’re looking at three locations. When we get to more than five locations, either I’ll do two weekly member meetings in a day (that’s my favorite part of the whole thing), or some new kind of governance approach will make itself known; likely there’ll be enough of a group skillset by then to have members lead the meetings; we already have members who know how to start the meeting without me, and who do.

On Wednesday, February 22, 2017 at 1:45:47 AM UTC-8, Jeannine van der Linden wrote:

I cannot speak for Alex but that was surely my experience. Just like having kids, once you have two you must accept the reality that you cannot be all things to both of them all the time, unless you do not sleep or have managed bilocation. And when you get to three it’s Kitty bar the door.

I leave the country every year for at least six weeks, so this came up early for us and had to be factored in. But I think one of the most important things about running a business – or being part of a community actually – is the notion that everyone is replaceable including me. If they are not I think i am doing it wrong.

This may also be traceable to a high tolerance for uncertainty and a form conviction that there are few things that cannot be corrected after they go terribly wrong . :slight_smile:

There are several 1’s in running this group we have here, but few of them require my physical presence at any given moment.

On Tuesday, February 21, 2017 at 2:41:54 PM UTC+1, Alex Hillman wrote:

Thanks Alex :slight_smile: that exercise is adapted from the community masterclass that Tony, Adam and I designed a few years back.

Genuine “1s” in this case are generally pretty limited, like you said. Operationally, it can include ownership & authorizations that aren’t readily shareable without major changes to the org. Naturally this depends heavily on how you set up your org in the first place :slight_smile:

Curious what you mean by “two is easier than one”? Do you mean that by having to run two spaces, you’re essentially forced to federate/delegate more?

-Alex


The #1 mistake in community building is doing it by yourself.

Better Coworkers: http://indyhall.org

Weekly Coworking Tips: http://coworkingweekly.com

My Audiobook: https://theindyhallway.com/ten

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 3:52 PM, Alex Linsker [email protected] wrote:

Alex, I super-like how you wrote that. The 1 2 3 4 is a great system, it gives words to what I’ve been observing the past few months without words for it, many things went from 1 and 2 to 4 once our second membership location opened; two is easier than one.

I’d be curious, what are 1’s? I think nothing is a 1 except being oneself/being fully human/sharing of oneself/being assertive/asking and making what one very much wants.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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Hiya, Alex!

I have enjoyed very much your governance guidelines. I am very curious about number 4 and why it is there.

Individuals have freedom of speech and association, freedom of travel and choice of residence, employment, and education

I am not sure I think that is actually a meaningfully true statement so I would have to revise it a little. But as a practical matter, i am fairly certain I would get a lot of blank stares if I included it in any kind of communication to coworkers. Maybe there is a differnt line for what is private and public between there and here; but I wil say that my coworkers have clearly expressed that while they like having a combination of business, nonprofit, clubls, and individuals, they do not want political parties or political funding, lobbyists, or any kind of entity whose purpose is explicitly to alter the political landscape.

When I think about it it seems to me a question of accessibility over openness when we look at the core values of Open Coworking; I think if I substituted a statment about radical inclusion in the space they would go for it.

(Please see founder bias? :-))

But trying to apply that statement to a coworking space leaves me a bit puzzled. Help me out?

.

···

Hi Jeannine, I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the governance guidelines! http://collectiveagency.co/governance-guidelines/

All six of them were written iteratively and revised from a lot of feedback, and will be revised more if members have questions about them and/or want to revise them.

The benefit of #4 is that freedom of speech is pretty cool, and if people don’t view themselves as having the other freedoms, such as freedom of where to live, then they are likely to not be a member. So members supporting each other on all these things is rad. Recently, #4 was helpful for me, because a member asked why I’d been asking people not to whisper, and to talk in normal voices. And that got me thinking, after five and a half years, that if people want to whisper, even if I have reasons for thinking it’s not as good, then those reasons don’t matter as much as freedom of speech. So I’ve stopped myself from reminding anyone who’s whispering not to whisper. The other guidelines could also do that too, but the specifics helped.

Also I have a friend (not a member and not at a coworking place) who was working delivering kombucha via truck, and she was talking with a towtruck driver, and he thought he had freedom of travel on the job, and she thought she didn’t. So that was interesting to hear. She ended up quitting that job a couple months later, she just wasn’t as happy with it and the freedom of travel was how she defined her main issue with it. They both thought the governance guidelines would be neat as a kind of Glassdoor/Yelp way to rate workplaces and to recruit people to work there.

You write about political parties; while we have (or at least aspire to) freedom of speech, the Community Guidelines are more core to the Terms of Service and members view the Community Guidelines as the day-to-day thing to look to. http://collectiveagency.co/community-guidelines/ #4 of those is “IF needed, confront with respect (how you’d like to be confronted).” and members agree that badmouthing anyone behind their back or who isn’t here based on any label isn’t within the guidelines. So that would block out political fighting and groups that do that, from doing that here, which is the main form of politics in the U.S., since most people in politics don’t want to lose but want other people to lose, which isn’t treating people the way you’d want to be treated.

I think that the wording will vary from place to place. Accessibility and openness are important to members although not rated in surveys as the most important values. Radical inclusion, in my view and in the view of members who don’t prioritize certain groups over other groups (when we checked in on that wording a few years ago) doesn’t cover what we do. But I think whatever wording works for a community is the best wording for that community! The governance guidelines were helpful in another survey months ago in strengthening accountability, people making happen what they very much want, and the freedoms question. Having the option to answer anonymously or with one’s name is how we do the surveys, for this survey so far 3 people filled out their name.

Founders bias is the founder’s biases affecting the group? I definitely have biases and love being aware of them. I also love when I want something and members don’t want it. The first time that ever happened was when I wanted to throw out the plants, and we put a tally sheet on the wall of the kitchen with ‘yes’ and ‘no’ and I was the only ‘yes’. We kept the plants and now they’re five and a half years old and I’ve come to love them, although they live by members who are not me actively caring for them. I also love having written guidelines, such as criteria for membership, that is written and approved by members - people read it and can see whether or not the group is for them, and often sign up without ever talking with me. And the best is at our Division location, members have stepped up to organize events like a feng shui happy hour on their own, everything from the planning to the poster to the reorganizing, and now everyone I’ve heard from is super-happy with the new layout (I was going for too much of a ‘ballroom’ layout, and now the room has subdivisions because Sara suggested it and got members together who wanted to move things after drinking a little.

Right now members are voting on proposals by members from February and March, and the governance guidelines being formally on the website is less important so far than more locations or LED lighting but more important than terms for member-hosted events. (Out of 7 people who’ve filled out the Google Form, I chose ‘very much yes’, and 3 members chose ‘yes’ and 3 didn’t have a preference, and no one chose ‘no’ or ‘very much no’: “About 6 months ago I drafted ‘Governance Guidelines’ http://collectiveagency.co/governance-guidelines/ based on what seems to work well. Do you want these to be formally added to our website underneath the Community Guidelines tab?” (For perspective, as to whether members want a third location, 3 people chose ‘very much yes’ and 1 person chose ‘yes’ and no one chose ‘no’ or ‘very much no’. And for LED lighting, a higher percentage of members chose ‘yes’ out of the total members who are at that location, and the original proposal is a ‘very much yes’ from the two members who suggested it. So LED lighting is wanted about as much by people who want it as are the governance guidelines, but twice as many people want LED lighting as want the governance guidelines on the website :slight_smile:

···

On Thursday, February 23, 2017 at 1:16:35 AM UTC-8, Jeannine van der Linden wrote:

Hiya, Alex!

I have enjoyed very much your governance guidelines. I am very curious about number 4 and why it is there.

Individuals have freedom of speech and association, freedom of travel and choice of residence, employment, and education

I am not sure I think that is actually a meaningfully true statement so I would have to revise it a little. But as a practical matter, i am fairly certain I would get a lot of blank stares if I included it in any kind of communication to coworkers. Maybe there is a differnt line for what is private and public between there and here; but I wil say that my coworkers have clearly expressed that while they like having a combination of business, nonprofit, clubls, and individuals, they do not want political parties or political funding, lobbyists, or any kind of entity whose purpose is explicitly to alter the political landscape.

When I think about it it seems to me a question of accessibility over openness when we look at the core values of Open Coworking; I think if I substituted a statment about radical inclusion in the space they would go for it.

(Please see founder bias? :-))

But trying to apply that statement to a coworking space leaves me a bit puzzled. Help me out?

.

David,
I’m am constantly not in my space and have been gone for 7-10 days multiple times in the last year. I keep 3 Community Cultivators on hand at any given moment. They “work” for a trade or discount on their memberships. Because my community is smaller (60 members) they can easily handle anything that comes their way. Some key things I always do in preparation to leave is:

-restock all the supplies so no one has to think too hard

-post instructions/account number for Comcast in case the internet shits

-post the landlord’s cell number and reasons why they might want to call him (flood, plumbing issues)

-email all members that I’m leaving and to lower their expectations for response time, cleanliness and activities. I also send this out in advance of holidays.

-forward day pass and tour inquiries to one Cultivator to handle

-make sure the Cultivators have my cell number just in case

Implementing a member Orientation packet has also prevented most issues since everyone knows where to look for standard procedure. http://coherecommunity.com/shop/coworking-orientation-packet

Angel

···

On Monday, February 20, 2017 at 7:24:45 AM UTC-7, David Hamilton wrote:

Hello,

I run a small co-working space in a big city - it’s around 20 members who are mostly monthly members who let themselves in using a phone app. I’m the only person managing the space - it’s small.

BUT - I need to go overseas for 2 weeks - I’m worried about new people coming to the space and not being able to show them the space and make sure they’re okay. Should I create a way to an automated system to add more people or should I hire someone to manage the space while I’m gone? Would it be reasonable to establish someone as a “community manager” and compensate them with the use of the space? The space doesn’t make a ton of money, so any wages could make the space unsustainable.

Any recommendations? (I need to get away!)

Best!

-David

I am like Angel and I have left for up to three weeks. I restock everything, give them instructions on how to fix the internet, I give them a Visa credit card worth $50 to $100 for any extra expenses they come across, and hang a note.

The point person is a community member that is there enough to fix problems, lives nearby, and has a good relationship with the rest of the members.

Don’t over think it, prepare, and go. Your community is most likely less reliant on you than you think. It’s sad to think about at first but gives you butterflies when you learn that they are happy with each other.