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How Co Working Killed Our Culture

February 2nd, 2020

As a business’ grows it becomes increasingly important to define the culture and values of the company and set it out in a way that the team can see and buy into. In the early stages the energy, determination and vision of the founder define the culture and the team, partners and backers buy into that person. As the team grows and more structure is introduced that energy and vision can get lost in translation, hence the need for an explicit focus on core values and culture.

At TCN we found that in the early days we had a culture based around the values of our joint venture partner in Holland, and also the start-up nature of business – high energy, fast, risk-taking decisions and immediate feedback on the success or otherwise! Our office grew and became our identity with breakout areas, a focus on design and creativity and meeting rooms designed to foster creativity and collaborative thinking.

When we moved out of London, we moved into a Co-Working set up in Reading, which we thought would continue this culture, enhanced through the ability to meet other companies and share ideas, work and indeed social life. After two years it is clear that sitting behind someone else’s brand, in a homogenous box, with an eclectic mix of companies, has done nothing in helping the culture of our business. In fact, it has had a detrimental effect. New starters can’t see day to day what we are about (and get confused by the Co-Work brand).

So, two years on and we have found a space in Reading to call our own and which exudes our culture and ambition. Character, space and an atmosphere which fosters our core values of Respect, Team, Challenge, Courage and Passion. All the things that we lost when we sat in a small box under the guise of the Co-Working dream.

Richard Pearce, CEO, TCN