Just because you’re a work at home mum, that doesn’t mean you have to work at home all the time! Today’s guest blogger Sam Title, Dad of two from Toronto, Canada is here to tell us about a great alternative. Over to you Sam…
It’s quite an inspiration seeing mompreneurs sharing tips or “secrets to success” that allow you to juggle your roles as busy moms and business professionals. Many of those secrets may involve time management tricks, multitasking skills, and likely include establishing an important system of support on which you know you can always rely.
Truth is, there’s another secret encompassing a lot of those things I just mentioned – and it’s still unknown to many mompreneurs who already make it part of their day-to-day existence, and ultimately count it as crucial to their incredible achievements.
The secret I’m talking about is an international phenomenon – and represents a community that you may or may not be a member of. It’s a quiet subculture of the mompreneur movement, as well as other specialized groups of professionals.
There’s no annual fee – except the cost of “consumption”. You don’t sign a contract or worry about getting stuck on some insidious mailing list as a consequence of joining. There’s no secret password or knock to get into this community.
Membership is more of a self-realization after a friendly, knowing glance when you see another member. That familiar glance tells a tale of how they decided to join this secret group. You know this because it was your story too.
Perhaps it was an internal debate – most likely it was a confusing and conflicting thought process that ended with welcoming, open arms and warm mugs. Like you, the other members of this community always make prospective members feel just as welcome as you felt mid-debate.
In case you’re hearing this for the first time, see if you can relate to this:
As a mompreneur working from your home office, you’ve tried everything in your power to make a go of it. The problem is, it’s too loud. You’re generally pretty disciplined with your work – after all, you do have deadlines to meet. But you’re just back from carpooling what seems like 10 kids to school (it’s only 4); the dog is begging for attention; you’re days behind in your work because your home Internet connection conked out last week; and the mom who does the return carpool (with the same mini militia) has the flu. And it’s only Monday. You need to get out; you need to shower, have meetings, catch up on work and maybe build your business. Where do you go?
You pack up your laptop and everything else you need for work, and head out to the closest, most convenient coffee shop, set yourself down at a table, plug in your laptop and get down to it.
This is the global phenomenon known as The Coffice. “Coffice” is a conjunction of the words “coffee” and “office”; a term to describe the local coffee shop that is utilized as a place for performing daily work-related tasks; a location for non-office (or occasional office) dwelling workers to create nontraditional work environments in which to conduct their business.
And as proud mompreneurs who frequent the Coffice, you are known as Cofficers.
As Cofficers, you are part of a community of professionals that is growing by leaps and bounds the world over. But it’s largely misunderstood by the masses.
Non-Cofficer colleagues, family members and friends don’t realize that, like getting off the elevator in a downtown high-rise, Coffice devotees are on a first-name basis with all the people who work at their regular spots – they are the Coffice staff – including the managers and many of the other Cofficers there. They’d be shocked at the amount of networking actually done at The Coffice – and the business opportunities brought by that networking.
Veteran Cofficers have nearly perfected their Coffice experience. They shrug off and occasionally chuckle at the bewildered, sometimes judgmental glances from caffeine-starved customers buying their lattes before rushing downtown to full-time cubicles and glassed-in corner offices.
The managers, VPs, Directors and C-suite key holders dubiously staring at the sea of laptops have no idea what Cofficers are all about. They’re clueless as to the level of thought and strategy that goes into choosing a Coffice location. They’d be amazed at how much work goes into packing briefcases and laptop bags with the Cofficer’s tools.
If Cofficers actually sat down with all of these people and explained how the Coffice infrastructure is harnessed, to our professional advantage – sometimes with robotic precision – laptop sales would boom, wifi use would explode and maybe…just maybe…stress management programs, seminars and self-help books would become near obsolete. Maybe.
In lieu of miracles happening – now that you’ve established yourselves as a strong community of supportive mompreneurs, WAHMs, SAHWMs and beyond – it’s time to look up from your laptops and work on removing the veil of mystery surrounding the Coffice. Should you see a mompreneur co-Cofficer, let her know how big the community really is.
Welcome the tentative mompreneur and make it known to everyone else that the Coffice community continues to grow as fast as the kids!
Congratulations. Welcome to The Coffice!
Sam Title is not only a dedicated Cofficer, but Chief Executive Cofficer of The Coffice. When not writing about The Coffice or building his Coffice community, he is a marketing communications professional working on various client engagements, a dad to two beautiful daughters and the husband of Wonder Woman (seriously!). You can find him at: firstname.lastname@example.org; www.facebook.com/thecoffice; www.twitter.com/thecoffice; and www.thecoffice.biz.
Photo Credit: Rannie Turingan Photography