Nearly a year has passed since my co-founders and I took a leap of faith and signed the lease on the new space for Launch Terre Haute. Juggling jobs and families, we spent hours during the busy month of December cleaning, assembling furniture, and organizing our new co-work space to perpetuate our dream of building a community of talented individuals that would have a place to work and collaborate. Why, you ask? Because our world is changing, and if you don’t adapt, you will die. There is an economic paradigm shift happening and co-working spaces are planted solidly in the middle of it. Large corporations and businesses have dominated our economy in recent years, but many have become slow to adapt and invariably, service levels drop and prices go up. And who pays for it? The end consumer. But thanks to the amount of information available, the end consumer is smarter and more resourceful than ever. The rate of change in technology is affecting the way we produce and consume everything. In the service sector for example, talented people are better able to work independently, have their brand noticed on the Internet, and reach the end consumer quickly and easily. Whether you’re an architect, accountant, graphic artist, web developer, coder, or writer, you can deliver your talent to the end consumer at a market price that’s valued appropriately.
And these talented freelancers and independents need a place to work efficiently. In recent years, all the cool kids were working and meeting clients at local coffee shops, but sometimes that can be like working in the middle of a traveling circus. You put your earbuds in to block out the aural insanity happening around you and retreat to your own personal work haven. Enter the co-work space and the reason for its existence. SERENDIPITOUS COLLISION. Put talented, forward thinking, and like-minded people in an open and inviting workspace and it’s like lighting the fuse on an explosion of ideas. Everyone has ideas, but further resources are needed to turn ideas into something meaningful. Let’s be clear…we are not a turnkey solution to take a startup business from a concept to a global enterprise. But we have made strides in identifying resources for people with innovative ideas, and have positioned ourselves as a focal point for nurturing entrepreneurship. In other words, we have done the work over the last 2 years building a local ecosystem that feeds entrepreneurship and we’ve only just begun.
At Launch Terre Haute, we’re guilty of being hyper-focused on the future and finding a way to become woven into the fabric of local economic growth. It’s when we recently had a moment to take stock of what has actually happened in our co-work space over the course of the last year that we realized what a cool community of members we have built. We think it’s appropriate to showcase some of our members and the projects they are working on, so we’re hosting out first “THIS Event” (THIS-Terre Haute Innovation Showcase) on November 17th. The serendipitous collisions I spoke of earlier have led to the birth of some new companies and helped other Launch members expand the scope of their business. We’re also thankful for the many local companies that believe what we’re doing is vital to the growth of our local economy and have supported our initiative through sponsorship and program funding. On this day, we will honor one of our biggest supporters, Vectren Energy, by dedicating and naming our conference room the “Vectren Energy Conference Room” at 5:30pm. We hope you can join us for some light refreshments from 4pm-7pm during this open house style event and see what our member companies are working on. The seeds are planted, and we can’t wait to see what 2017 has in store.