The pandemic has shifted how entrepreneurs work from desks in co-working spaces to desks at home. However, it’s not stopping Common Desk from building community with its members.
Founded by Nick Clark, Common Desk is a coworking space focused on hospitality, authenticity, and consistency for its working professionals. Their focus on serving their entrepreneurs is not stopping due to COVID-19.
“I think the most dangerous thing with COVID as a brand is all it takes is one mistake because we’re dealing with people’s lives when it comes to a pandemic, and very much so we feel responsible for people,” Clark said during a Dallas Startup Week event. “So we took the approach of saying, ‘let’s put safety first and foremost, we will have to close down our spaces. What we can do is provide resources and community for entrepreneurs.”
Common Desk has shifted its events from in-person to virtual Zoom meetings, allowing for entrepreneurs to build community with their fellow team members.
“In the weirdest of ways, it allowed us to develop this new kind of online community for the members that really partake in what we are doing, and we’re able to get to know them so much better,” Clark said. “I think our staff grew a little closer and it boosted morale.”
Clark and his teams continue have weekly meetings over Zoom, not only to discuss business but to host happy hours online to give the team a resemblance of normal. He said that Common Desk is in a healthier state now than they were in February.
“That is something I’m really, really proud of.”
Clark also noted that overwork and burnout has been an issue at Common Desk, as their employees are emotionally invested in the work they do. This has caused Clark and his team to encourage employees to take time away from work.
“We’ve been keeping a very close pulse in our company’s morale. We’ve created a survey that goes out to all of our members and it really helps us gauge what leadership is getting something wrong or when we communicate something incorrectly.”
When asked about how businesses can keep running and growing during the pandemic, Clark had this to say:
“Mistakes are part of the journey, if you are not making mistakes, then you must not be trying hard enough. The obstacle in front of us, which is COVID, will present opportunity. If you’re on an entrepreneurial journey and you’re just getting started, I think now’s the time to go in and get after it and go start something.”
This discussion was part of Dallas Startup Week’s Innovation in Coworking in a COVID-19 World. Trey Bowles and Delanie Majors from The DEC Network hosted CEO and Founder of Common Desk, Nick Clark.
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