If you’re at the stage of solely eating Captain McCains to avoid spending money, I’d say its probably not worth the expense, however if you’ve got more than 2 people working together out of dorm, I’d say do it.
It doesn’t scale to even a small team though. At Gonnabe, our productivity easily doubled when we moved from everyone working remotely doing 9:00p calls to working out of Cross Campus.
Being with the team in one place is MUCH better. Email can’t beat sitting across from your team. Random lunch brainstorming happens. The team shares in wins as they happen. We talk strategy everyday, help each other debug, plan projects. 30 back-n-forth emails over a week span happen in 10 minutes. Talk. Align. Execute.
I’m not sure it’s true with all coworking spaces, but in Santa Monica the events you want to be at happen in the spaces. The networking comes to you, and serendipity happens. I’ve met more VC’s in 4 months at Cross Campus then the year & half I lived in LA prior.
I was just talking with Zach about this kind of luck by proximity that happens at LA’s coworking centers:
Just the other day I, quite randomly, ran into a team of very energetic media entrepreneurs starting a new venture called Demo Video Lab at the O.G. of LA coworking locations, Coloft. I learned a lot and added some advice; their kickoff event is already close to selling out. Can’t wait to work with them again.
How do you choose a coworking space? Talk to the founders. They set the vibe of the place and it’ll definitely have an impact on your company culture, because you’ll be spending 8-18 hours a day there. Look at the events that are held there. Are they the type of events with the type of attendees that’ll help your startup? Do engineers come? Investors? Elon Musk? What it comes down to is good people, events, community, and reputation – that’s what to look for in a coworking space.
In LA we’re lucky to have lots of great options: Cross Campus, Coloft, ROC & Working Village if you’re in Santa Monica, NextSpace at Amplify in Venice, Blankspaces in Beverly Hills, Hub & Kleverdog in downtown, with io/LA & WeWork in Hollywood. I’ve been to events at just about every one of them and met a lot great people.
So when you ask if “your LA Startup should join a coworking space?” – it depends on your team and the stage of your company. Be efficient with your capital early on, then shift to being efficient with your time – spend the money to be right in the mix of things at an LA Coworking Space as you progress.