When Jayne Adamson embarked on a journey to set up a rural co-working, meeting and training space in Denby Dale she did it for all the right reasons.
Having worked at home for 12 months as a freelance marketer working with product led businesses, she found that home working, when you do it full time especially, can be isolating and whilst she loved the flexibility that she had created for herself and her clients she decided that having succeeded in her first year in business it was time to look for an alternative.
Initially Jayne looked at local office spaces but soon realised that working in an office alone would be just as lonely as working from home so she started to look at shared work spaces. Whilst there are many to choose from, Jayne didn’t want to add extra hours to her day travelling and also didn’t want the expense of city centre parking. She is passionate about local business, shops locally where possible and helps other local businesses out as much as she can so really wanted to stay local. When she discovered that there wasn’t anywhere locally that offered co-working, and convinced it was something that other people would also want, she decided she would set it up herself.
This was back in February this year and she was keen to get out of her own home so the space was found, a beautiful old house right next to the train station that is rented out to various businesses as office space. Jayne rented two rooms, one for the co-working and the other for a meeting and training space as she felt there was also a lack of professional but inspiring meeting venues in the area. The lease was signed on the 1st of March and the first workshop, a social media strategy session was planned for the opening day on the 20th of April.
All the furniture other than 9 chairs was still in transit when the country went into lockdown on the 23rd of March, the TV screen for presenting had been installed and the photocopier ordered all to complete Jaynes vision of having a fully kitted out office facility that was totally flexible so could deliver whatever her customers wanted of the space. But sadly, as we are all aware, that opening date was not possible and it is only in recent weeks that she has been able to start working from there and welcoming people to have a look round or try a free trial day. Luckily, because the space had already been designed to be flexible she has been able to follow all the government guidelines with regards to social distancing by moving the furniture around and now has co-working available for 7 people that are all 2 metres apart.
In fact, the business is so much about flexibility that it is called The Flex Collective and it is more than just a shared workspace and meeting place. Jayne aims to create a collaborative community of members who help each other out and feel like a bunch of colleagues and friends. She has already got a good community of flex fans on social media and is looking forward to the day she can welcome more people in real life. The coworking works on a membership basis where a customer takes 5, 10 or 15 days per month to be used whenever suits them, or of course, they can just call for the odd ad-hoc day whenever they like.
If you want to find out more about The Flex Collective, please visit the website theflexcollective.co.uk, follow on Facebook, Instragram or LinkedIn or contact Jayne by email firstname.lastname@example.org