- Launched in 2017 the Coworking Accelerator was created to prevent coworking operators from making common mistakes.
- The Coworking Accelerator created the Coworking Canvas, a tool to help operators define, design, and develop their workspace without compromising on the core values.
- Creating a quality coworking space will help operators foster loyal customers and help attract prospects
The Coworking Accelerator was created to prevent coworking operators from making the same mistakes, as well as to support “quality coworking” spaces that share the core values of belonging, nurturing, and place-making as the foundation of their business.
Born through the experience of building one of the first coworking spaces in the world and one of the first spaces in Scotland, The Melting Pot in Edinburgh, became the testing ground for what the Coworking Accelerator was to become.
The Melting Pot
What started as an idea of creating a community hub for people to come together, support social innovation, add value, be affordable, and accessible to all, the Melting Pot launched in the mid 2000s, right during the peak of the global financial crisis and economic recession.
From the beginning, the focus of the company was to build a space that supported social innovation within the local community. It was a tough business environment back then, but the founders succeeded in creating a place that countless businesses and people in Edinburgh call home.
More than a coworking space, they became a social incubator.
The Coworking Accelerator
The Coworking Accelerator was launched in 2017 following an investment from the Scottish government.
The Coworking Accelerator offers various options for coworking spaces that share the core values of “quality coworking” and are in the planning, almost launched, or already launched stage.
I spoke with Claire Carpenter, founder of The Melting Pot and the Coworking Accelerator, to learn about what it takes to build and maintain a successful coworking space, the accelerator program, and the concept of “place-making”.
“Communities thrive when people, spaces, and places create a joined-up ecosystem. “It is important to build more than just an office.”
When I worked out of The Melting Pot, I was able to see and experience this thriving ecosystem firsthand; it was incredible.
It’s all about the relationships.
How do you host things? How do you curate community? Do you have more than a desk?
The right answers to these questions will help you nurture loyal customers and help create a good pipeline of potential customers.
I ’ve worked out of a fair share of coworking spaces, and yet there are only a few where I would be eager to go back to. It’s about the experience, the quality of the space.
Enter the Coworking Canvas, a tool that was created to help operators create a quality space. The canvas serves as the “standard methodology for designing, defining and developing your quality coworking space”.
The Coworking Canvas “provides a framework to examine and develop a quality coworking business. It is based on over a decade of experience and testing, as well as research with the movements’ pioneers and leaders. It articulates the fundamental ingredients of this business model – no matter what size of ‘space’ you chose.”
With the Coworking Canvas as the defining standard, the Coworking Accelerator uses one to one mentoring, group mentoring, in-person events, remote consultation, various tools, and even an integration into Nexudus to support and help develop “quality coworking” spaces around the world.
Among the events, the Coworking Accelerator hosts are the Explore Quality Coworking Workshops, which are designed for operators at the business planning and feasibility stage of opening a coworking business.”
I am interested to see how as the Coworking Accelerator continues to expand and grow it can help the industry further define and clarify its service offering, without having to compromise any of coworking’s core values.