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Four years of coworking in Vernon

I don’t know how this happened, but somehow we’ve been coworking in Vernon for four years now.

On August 2014, Marco, Steve, Morgan, and myself (Justin) got they keys to our loft suite on 3000-30th Street in Vernon, BC (right across from Marten Brewpub).

Back then we were just four remote workers who wanted a place where we could work together. We were tired of working from our home. We wanted some interaction!

Initially, we met at Geek Beers, and started discussing renting an office space together.

Coworking was the solution. Even though we were all working on different things, we were able to hang out throughout the day, chat on Slack, and go for lunch.

Coworking for remote workers and freelancers in Vernon, BC, Okanagan

This past year, the space kept evolving:

  • We now have eight full-time members: Daryl, Mikey, Rick, Jeff, Marco, Morgan, Steve, Justin.
  • We have a new dedicated area for our part-time members: a large conference table, set up with four monitors.
  • We now have Telus High-Speed Fiber (200-300 mbps up and down).
  • The space still has “the vault” for private phone calls, and a private office across the hall that can be booked for meetings and video conferencing.
  • We also have a kitchen, fridge, Aeropress, and Italian coffee maker.

Coworking in Vernon, BC 2018

Our members are a mix of folks working for tech companies, profesional remote workers, and people building their own companies.

Interested in joining us? You can apply here.

Coworking advantages – enjoy your work more and be less lonely

Coworking for remote workers and freelancers in Vernon, BC, Okanagan

Coworking has many advantages. In a survey done at the Global Coworking Conference, attendees cited that these coworking benefits:

  • 84% were more engaged and motivated
  • 67% had enjoyed more professional success
  • 69% felt more successful overall

If you’re working remotely, or running your own solo freelance business, you probably don’t need a desk. Your biggest need is likely human connection.

In Steve King’s HBR article, he describes the drawbacks of remote work:

According to Vivek Murthy, the former Surgeon General of the United States, increasing numbers of remote and independent “gig economy” workers is one of the key reasons for the growing “loneliness epidemic”. Murthy also points out that loneliness is much more than just a social problem. It’s also a health problem, “associated with a reduction in lifespan similar to that caused by smoking 15 cigarettes a day and even greater than that associated with obesity.”

Getting out of the house, and interacting with other people, is essential for human health. King found that after joining a coworking space, 83% of members felt less lonely and isolated.

Interested in coworking in Vernon, BC? Check out our space here.

2017 International Coworking Day

Today, August 9 2017, is International Coworking Day.

Brad Neuberg started the first coworking space back in 2005. He wrote a blog post describing the benefits:

Traditionally, society forces us to choose between working at home for ourselves or working at an office for a company. If we work at a traditional 9 to 5 company job, we get community and structure, but lose freedom and the ability to control our own lives. If we work for ourselves at home, we gain independence but suffer loneliness and bad habits from not being surrounded by a work community.

Coworking is a solution to this problem. In coworking, independent writers, programmers, and creators come together in community a few days a week. Coworking provides the “office of a traditional corporate job, but in a very unique way.

The early members of that space talked about the benefits in this video:

Now, in 2017, more than 1 million people will work from a coworking space.

Want to join an awesome coworking space in downtown Vernon, BC? Check us out!

11 Incredible Coworking Statistics

Remote working in the Okanagan

My family and I moved to Vernon, BC in 2012. I’d been working as a Product Manager for an Edmonton-based software startup, and had convinced them to let me work remotely.

One of my first objectives after arriving in Vernon was to connect with like-minded locals who also worked in the technology sector. I was leaving a thriving technology scene in Edmonton, and was worried that I’d become rusty without good community.

What I found surprised me: world-class software developers, designers, creatives, and business people living right in Vernon. This eventually lead to a bunch of us deciding to rent an office, and work together.

That became Cowork Vernon.

What started as a small group of 4 original founders has grown to 10 regular members. Our main suite has high ceilings, large windows with lots of natural light, a small kitchen (with fridges, microwave, and sink), a soundbooth, and a comfy couch. We also have a separate private office for private phone calls, meetings, and audio recording.

Why do I remote work from Vernon?

There are many reasons!

First, it’s a beautiful place to live; it’s the hidden gem of the Okanagan. Most people drive through and don’t realize how many beautiful spots are around Vernon. The lakes, beaches, mountains, and natural areas around here are amazing.

Second, Vernon is a great place to raise a family. My wife and I have 4 kids, and we’d talked to people who were raising their kids here and loved it.

Third: recreation! Our whole family skis. We can be from our house to the lift at Silver Star in about 20 minutes. That’s incredible. There are very few places in North America where you can do that. We also love going to the beach, swimming, and hiking. There are great options for all of those things, all less than 15 minutes away.

Fourth: I really like the actual city of Vernon. I think it has lots of potential. It’s a good size, not too spread out. I bike to the coworking office most days. If you live in East Hill, or other communities around the city center, there are a lot of places that are within walking distance.

Interested in trying coworking?

Our address is 3000-30th Street, Vernon BC (right by Marten Brewpub). We don’t currently accept drop-ins (but please fill out our survey if you’re interested). You can email us at info@coworkvernon.com or find us on Twitter: @coworkvernon.

Cheers,
Justin Jackson
@mijiustin

More resources:

One year of coworking in Vernon, BC

“Coworking is about making the choice to work along side other people instead of in isolation.” – Seattle Collaborative Space Alliance

Cowork Vernon recently celebrated it’s one year anniversary. In August 2014, we met at 3000-30 Ave in a space that looked like this:

Original co-working space in Vernon, BC - best in the Okanagan!

We’ve come a long way! Here’s what we accomplished this past year:

  • We welcomed 10 new members.
  • We built a sound booth in a former bank vault.
  • We rented an additional private office / meeting room across the hall.
  • We filled the candy machine 12 times.
  • We built a kitchen: sink, counter, fridge, Aeropress, Italian coffee maker.
  • We painted!
  • We added 9 desks, 7 additional monitors, 2 couches, and 1 love seat.
  • We had 19 “words of the day”
  • Went for 56 Friday lunches.

Cowork Vernon was started by four locals who wanted a collaborative workspace downtown: Morgan, Justin, Marco, and Steve.

We’ve just signed our second year lease. We’re excited about the future of coworking in Vernon!