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Alex Hillman

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there’s no such thing as a collaborative space

1 minute read
by Alex Hillman

Every time I read an article about a new “collaborative space” that’s opened, I hear the voice of Derek Neighbors repeating the following:

“You can’t do collaboration, you have to be a collaborator.”

Proof positive, I see a lot of comments like this one that I got over the weekend:


And every week I hear from dozens of community members and community managers who notice the same thing about the coworking spaces they interact with. What’s wrong with so many self-described collaborative spaces that even when they aren’t empty…the people in them barely interact at all?

Soooooo in my latest podcast episode (number 40!!!) I share a story about finding a thriving community in a place that was literally designed to keep people separate from each other. It’s the kind of experience that makes me happy to say “welp, I was wrong about that!”

Give episode 40 a listen now, or save it for listening on your trip home today:

You can listen to the episode on the web now, tune in on iTunes or

And don’t forget to share the episode with someone who you think it could help!

Oh, one more thing. Can you do me a HUGE favor? Take a moment to give the show a rating and positive review on iTunes. The show has a perfect streak of 5 star reviews, and 30 amazing reviews. I’d love to see how quickly we can hit 50!

Upcoming Q&A Marathon

In a few weeks, I’m thinking about doing a coworking & community building Q&A marathon LIVE, online.

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Hey, thanks for reading!

Alex Hillman I am always thinking about the intersection of people, relationships, trust and business. I founded Indy Hall in 2006, making us one of oldest fully independent coworking communities in the world. This site is packed with the lessons and examples I’ve learned along the way. You can find me on Twitter, too! 🐦 Say hi.