Shared space offers climate of inspiration

Many franchisees at Patrice & Associates are moving our of their homes into an office space. It doesn’t have to be expensive and it doesn’t have to be a fancy storefront. Just interacting with professionals and sharing ideas – getting out of the house – plays a big part in the growth of an entrepreneur.  Some Chambers of Commerce offer office space from $50 – $75 a month.

By AARON NATHANS
The News Journal of Wilmington, Del. WILMINGTON, Del. (AP)

It’s a place to take a seat and get things done, to bounce ideas off one another, and occasionally laugh together and get the brain ready for inspiration.

This is the coIN loft, at 300 W. 9th St. in Wilmington, a “co-working” shared workspace for entrepreneurs at the very beginning of their business process. For $50, a member can visit five times in a month. If they want unlimited visits and the use of a desk, with WiFi. it’s $200 – far less than renting office space. For that price, they also get the use of a conference room, the confines of a groovy old downtown Wilmington row building, and the buzz of youthful energy around them. “Pay when you need it, don’t when you don’t,” said co-founder Wes Garnett The second- and third floor facility was buzzing on a recent afternoon, as some members sat at their borrowed desks, headphones plugged in as they created videos and Web pages for clients. Others watched the television/computer screen at the center of the room, watching a YouTube video of a guitar player picking superfast. “We skate the line between professional office and coffee shop, clubhouse,” Garnett said.

“We’re entrepreneurs that realize working with other entrepreneurs is better than working by yourself.” A worker can be right at home working from home, but “every once in a while, the walls begin to close in a little bit,” Garnett said. Garnett and Steve Roettger met in 2008 at a fi.nancial planning firm, where they both worked. They left and founded a marketing firm named Verge, which continues, now based at the coin Loft. Around that time, Roettger was reading Entrepreneur magazine when he saw an article on co-working. They founded the coin Loft in 2009. Wilmington did not yet have such a facility, and it was tough to get it off the ground, its founders said, especially in a state where many college students leave after graduation, and because no one nearby had heard of the concept. ‘It was tough finding people,” Roettger said. But folks liked the concept after they got used to it, Garnett said. Today, there are 26 people who pay, periodically; 11 come on a daily basis. There’s a conference room that members can reserve, complete with a sign reading, “Please feel free to use the glass.” There’s plenty of writing on the glass. Since the coIN Loft opened, Garnett and Roettger launched other products in collaboration with other members of the coin Loft and the University of Delaware, including uSeed, a platform that allows students to raise money for business startup projects from people they know.

After businesses get their sea legs at places like the coIN Loft, they can move on to an incubator like the Emerging Enterprise Center at the New Castle County Chamber of Commerce. Once businesses have a plan, can afford six months of rental space and are starting to bring in revenue, they’re welcome to seek membership, said its program manager, Michael Tentnowski

Back

What Clients Say About Patrice & Associates

  • Jonathan Litt was an amazing coach during my job search.

    The thing that stands out to me the most is you can tell he truly cares. He helped me gain self confidence through phone calls and was constantly checking in on me during the interview process. Not only was I able to acquire a great job with the help of Jonathan, but I received incredible insight. He is a very smart guy and is able to effectively explain his thoughts in a simple manner.          

    Thank you so much!

    Jacque J.

    Jonathan Litt was an amazing coach during my job search.
  • Karen Horton is personable, knowledgeable, and was instrumental to my Career Goals.

    Communication and correspondence with her was easy and fast and her feedback always proved very useful during the recruitment process.  With other recruiters I have dealt with in the past, I've usually had the impression that I was merely part of a quota of applications. This was not so with Karen, I am convinced that she had my best interest in mind as well as those of the company she was "hunting" me for.    

    I cannot thank Karen enough for all her assistance in what I am sure will be a long lasting relationship with my new employer.

    Regards,

    Carlos

    Karen Horton is personable, knowledgeable, and was instrumental to my Career Goals.
  • Ross Horton is the definition of what a professional account manager should aspire to be!

    He finds ways to help that best suits his candidate, now that takes passion for helping people! The way that he engages with his clients is truly rare to find. If you have the chance to work with him. Do it!

    Thank you,  Ross Horton and Patrice & Associates!

    Joel Rodriguez

    Ross Horton is the definition of what a professional account manager should aspire to be!
  • Dionne Spriggens is the definition of Dedicated!

    Dionne Spriggens is doing a great job with exceptional service.  Dionne is amazing with her persistence and the positive vibes she brings.  Since I the first time I spoke with her she has been nothing but professional and dedicated.

    I strongly believe that she will be a great asset to Patrice & Associates for many more years to come!

    Best regards

    Bovon L.

    Dionne Spriggens is the definition of Dedicated!
  • Shawn Hoye needs a raise!

    Shawn Hoye went above and beyond in matching me with a position and company that was best suited for me. He is passionate about what he does, and is with you every single step of the way. I would highly recommend Shawn Hoye and Patrice & Associates.          

    Thank you!

    Melissa

    Shawn Hoye needs a raise!