How we worked for 4 years without an office and brutally broke off
Vietnam veteran pestering us with stupid questions. He probably needs a mentor.
Before the start of summer, we had a distributed team. One woke up at 3 in the morning, set tea in the kitchen and answered business letters. Another took her daughter to her concert in the musician, listened to her performance, and during the others answered the urgent calls. The third was coding in a deck chair on the balcony with beautiful views of the foundation pits of future new buildings in Lyubertsy.
Accounting was outsourced, and lawyers too. Freelancers were taken for specific tasks. We earned.
4 years we saved on office. Then they sat down, counted and realized that we were saving not at the office, but at our productivity. And the difference was very serious. So hard we have never broken off.
Work at home
At home, like. I woke up, kissed my sleeping wife, put on my alcoholic shirt, pee - and, oh, you're at work. Sit write the code if there are no meetings today. Cool, right? Well, until the wife wakes up, the children will not begin to pull over the edge of the T-shirt, the cat will not sit on the keyboard and the neighbor will not knock on the issue of microcredit for 50 rubles as a guarantee of containers.
On the other hand, the shaggy bespectacles from the Journal of Business Psychology and their comrades who joined them show that distant work affects a person's ability to socialize. And often leads to "burnout" faster than long and tedious work in the office.
Both teams are wrong, because to talk about whether you need an office, in isolation from a specific project - pure idiocy.
It so happened that in May our team began to prepare coworking and the #tceh ecosystem (you probably know). Together with the site, we got our first office. In fact, a great conversation with an insider guitar.
And then it started.
As efficiently as from this moment, we probably never worked: the number of completed tasks and their quality has grown significantly. And it's not just about strengthening the team. More precisely, in the team that we became her. The team makes the result. Working hand in hand with others, but not being constrained by corporate rules and styles, was still easier.
It’s easier to take and draw on a piece of paper with a designer than to arrange dances with tambourines on Skype. Time a little less understanding - at times more. No second approach.
It’s easier to pick up or delegate a task when there is an opportunity to talk with another person in a team face to face (who has more bruises under his eyes, he delegates). It’s easier to tune in when someone snacks nearby.
Was the meeting rescheduled or canceled? You just sit and write the code, but you are not looking for a cafe to wait another hour.
In this case, the main work on the formulation and control of tasks remained in our mail and online systems such as Trello. At the same time, they discovered the delights of offline - they built a kanban board from a Whatman paper and stickers - and everyone could observe how things were going for the others, how everyone copes with the subtasks distributed among the employees as part of a common big task. In terms of analyzing employee gaps, it helped a lot.
When we announced the launch and began to attract the first residents, we decided to sit in their place. And the whole team moved from the "aquarium" to the general workspace of the Workshop.
And then went the story.
We had a dude with a distributed team. Development teams did not always understand each other. He gathered them all together with us, spent really 30 hours (!) In a meeting room with a view of Yauza (and nobody even bothered!) - they came out enlightened, but without a single mess. Now they are distributing invites to the beta of the mobile “crowd-story-telling” platform.
There was a group of comrades who drove AD&D in the evenings. They hooked a couple of other people from coworking, a magician there, a gnome warrior ... And something suddenly after two weeks they began to sort cases instead of games. They say no less exciting. Like crosswords, only the result is visible. At meetings, residents are always welcomed with their projects - new puzzles for hanging out.
Another friend from our team suddenly realized that he was a tea master - he collected the whole set and now holds tea parties in the recreation area a couple of times a week in the evening. A conversation always begins with tea and does not end soon.
A comrade peered into one of the coworkers. Faced our other resident in the kitchen - we talked - and the next day began a joint project. Something serious on boards with sensors and sensors - they say they will blow up the controller market. They asked not to upload pictures.
Another shot went just to see - talked with one of our mentors about the application of the technology that he wrote - and began to combine his remote work with a new project, which he immediately started. It helped to start a clear awareness of the product, which makes the fact that it is “boxed". The other day I found a partner. Very happy for him.
A friend of ours hired Lithuanian developers to make a picture-based mobile chat for the Asian market, and then wrote: “Guys, I can’t concentrate at home - I start to write an agreement on the division of shares, and it ends with sticking to the videos. I’m coming to you. ” Has come. The agreement was added. Then he reached out and began to walk on coworking. Consulted with our designer on color schemes. He then asked users what background color they would choose for the app. Got useful advice about the service for such visual tests. He left as happy as an elephant.
We print various stickers at home, which we order from our brothers in our minds and carry them in parcels to the Russian Federation. That's just the customs did not appreciate our initiative. Seeing in front of themselves a batch of 1000 pieces, they refused to believe that we were distributing stickers just like that, and were not going to trade them very profitably. Wrapped up. The founders of Fotokeeper, sitting at the next table, say: “We bought a typewriter for stickers here, give us the layout - we will do it for free, and at the same time we will test it.” They have no clear-cutting, but still cool.
But I'm not talking about that. More precisely, not quite about that.
Who or what is coworking, adviser?
In 2005, a programmer with an intriguing name Brad was faced with an incredible amount of home laziness. He rented an office and made a feint with his ears, offering to "cut" it between other freelancers. Moreover, along the way, so that they all together paid the rent, and he not only sat and rejoiced, but also drank coffee from the nearest Starbucks in his area.
Since then, the essence has not fundamentally changed. An office is taken, people sit in it and work. The main question, of course, is what the hell to give someone money for what you can do at home. We also asked him ourselves.
In short, the meaning is:
- At home, a wife, children and a cat. And none of them understands that if you are at the computer - it is as if you went to work. “Miyil, open the can, please” - smack. And that’s it, the thought is gone.
- On the other hand, Dobiralovo. We must get up and go. True, again, you can arrive at one in the morning - and if you get, believe me, sometimes before the metro opens, you can do more than two weeks at home.
- Home YouTube, social networks, TV, sofa, porn, refrigerator and procrastination. All the same is in coworking, but somehow, you know, fawn. Even in social networks you can’t sit normally when the body knows that it came to work here.
- Coworking is sometimes noisy. At home (with luck) it's almost quiet. And there are living people in coworking. But comfortable. But still not like at home.
- You can run wild at home. And in the coworking and office near live people. It seems that they do not interfere, but in the kitchen they crowd. And they smoke together. And having fun at lunch.
- And you can ask them! There will be a lawyer, and an accountant, and a designer, and even a specialist in getting rid of balalaika constipation. For sullen and secluded IT people this is generally happiness - after all, it’s normal to cost social connections a real problem for us.
- There is room to grow. For example, we also have an educational program. When I tell you something every day, why I want to take it and work, it's cool.
- And also the infrastructure. You can once deploy the working environment on a laptop, lock it in a closet, along with chargers and other things, and know that everything rises as it should, and tasks do not overlap with other projects. This is not very important for most of our residents, but it is important to someone.
In general, coworking is like an office, only without corporate bullshit. Plus a meeting room. Plus education.
This is still the place where if you stick on YouTube for about an hour they will approach you and ask: “Where is the code?”. This is still part of the “concept of saving” (according to Jean-Yves South, Namur), when dividing the space into several teams is not only less costly, but also effective in terms of communication and “visibility” in the market.
This is still the model for the start, which is chosen by people from 20 to 30 years old, with higher education and launching relevant projects - while alone or with a team of up to 5-7 people (this is like in the USA in 2011, we had a study with them).
And one of the best things you can see in a working day is how people, coming to us, say, “Wow, this is really cool.”
Well, a few more teams go to us just 3-4 times a month for glider airplanes before new releases, plus educational programs. Yes, and no one canceled the shower in the city center - also cool.
Home, office or coworking?
In general, for ourselves, we now know for sure that working in an office is cooler than at home, and in coworking in the middle of the workspace, even cooler than in an office. And the difference is an order of magnitude. This is not a universal truth, and I am not going to tell you that it will be so in your case.
I suggest a peek and check.
We give a free day in our coworking for you and your team. On any day until October 5, you can look at #tceh, choose any free table, sit down at it and work. Or discuss something in the meeting room. Or lie on the couch, take a shower, imprison something brought with you in the kitchen, read books from the library or shoot at the aliens on the console. But it’s better to do some work.
24 hours yours. If there is a lecture, seminar or master class on this day - go to it, no question. Is free.
To pick up your trial, you just need to write me in a personal and indicate your name, or send the same to firstname.lastname@example.org. Warn at least 2 hours before arrival, and if you intend to descend at 3 nights - during business hours, so that we can make a pass. Security needs a document such as a passport, and rights will do. But you can come in just like that if you go by, but not by a team anymore - call + 7-499-647-5102 and say what your name is.
Here is a virtual tour of our #tceh. Everything that is pictured is possible.
In the meantime, please tell us what experience you had at home, in offices and in coworking - and what helped and interfered. Any stories are important to us, even about little things, because we want to know everything, everything, everything about how to make work more productive.