If I needed proof that our new collaborative space in the Richmond Times-Dispatch Building was a good thing, it arrived one day late last week.
That’s when the place came alive in the most natural of ways, as our team and a series of guests and visitors created real, utterly palatable energy.
I had an early morning meeting with a former coworker, and one-time Floricane contributor, Beth Coakley. While Beth and I were meeting in the shared work area, Sam and Tina both arrived for the day and settled into their desks. As Beth and I wrapped, she wandered over to catch up with Tina while I went to greet my next meeting – my financial Seal Team coach, Jim Parker. As Jim and I met, Debra arrived for a meeting. There was a palatable buzz in the space as people went about their day – an unplanned, unorchestrated energy began to flow through the space.
In short order, others came and went – Sarah and I met, and then I hung out with Matthew Freeman of TMI Consulting. Jacob from Work It Richmond and Brian from @RTDNews both dropped by the space to chat briefly, as did Tom Silvestri and his finance sidekick, Raymond McDowell. And as the long day of collaborative ballet drew to a close, we welcomed a dozen friends and clients into the space for the last of our Summer of Self-Discovery workshops.
Everyone commented on the vibe, but the truth is that I had the pleasure of experiencing 12 full hours of it. The last place I felt such a constant stream of unrehearsed engagement over an extended period may have been during one of my three-day (and night) college newspaper publishing binges.
That’s not to say there is a lot of similarity between Floricane and the Commonwealth Times (though it is a bit ironic that I’m back in a newspaper environment after two decades). No, Floricane is a serious business – and that long day last week was evidence of that, as several dozen people rolled through to add emphasis to our belief that “the conversation is the change”.
I can’t wait to feel this new space when a half-dozen other businesses are working on conversations in this space.