The Art of Coworking

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Since starting my internship, I can safely say that Ment Cowork has become a safe haven for me. A place in which I can be myself, express myself and simply “be.” Ment has mastered the art of coworking. Not a thing? We think it should be! 

The ability to bring together people from different backgrounds, companies, walks of life, and work in the same space with the same end goal in mind: to Get stuff done. It takes a special set of skills, that’s for sure. 

How we do it

Maybe it’s the awesome interns we have, the owners that first saw potential in this 130 year-old building, the ever-growing and supportive community in which we sit upon or the amazing members that have set up a “home” here at Ment. 

Not to mention, we have this whole community partner collaboration thing on lock. Didn’t know that we provide event space as well? You do now! Even more so, we are fans of local art and have nothing against housing work here at Ment. Just ask our community partner for this month – Slow as Folk!

Amenities

We know what people want and we’ve got it down to a science. Member perks, discounts, coffee, parking passes and aesthetics – just call us the masters!

We are also super in touch with the concept of hygge here at Ment – something that we believe is an art of it’s own. We have learned to incorporate this feeling and lifestyle practice into our workspace…and the feedback has been nothing short of great!

Success!

We took a chance when we started with an empty floor and created something truly inspiring. Only a few years under our belt and we have become a masterpiece standing tall in the center of downtown Bowling Green. Ment represents so much more than just a space to work, we are an integrative community that advocates for all workplaces and individuals to do what they do best in a place that allows them to reach their potential. 

At Ment, we believe in the importance of art and want to provide an atmosphere where people feel invited to work in. Whether you’re inventing the next code for NASA or creating your latest masterpiece, we support you and all of your endeavors. You are {Ment} for great things! 

Want to know more about our story? Check out our blog on how community manager Hayley knew it was Ment to be. 

How to “Hygge” It

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Ever try to get work done, but you’re just not comfortable? The lighting is bad, it’s noisy, or maybe that dang desk chair just isn’t cutting it anymore. We’ve all been there and while this is not meant to be a sales pitch, hear me out. We simply want to show you how you can make your work space a little bit more enjoyable – by adding a little hygge to it. 

This concept, and our theme for the month, can help you bring in all the right vibes that you need in a work space. So how do you bring a “feeling” into how you work? By doing little things that make your space more “you.” Whatever it is that lifts up your spirits. 

Lighting

If you’re like me, natural light and windows can significantly change your mood. Sometimes hanging out by the windows in Ment is the perfect motivation for me. An entire room or skylight to soak up those rays might be just what you need. Use the light available to you to set a mood. No, I’m not talking about rose petals and romantic music (although if that is your thing, we are not against it). I’m talking about dimming those office lights or using those lamps that you have and getting your “cozy” on. Candle lovers, I know you guys are listening – this is for you too! 

This is where I add the Disclaimer right, Hayley? *Ment is not responsible for any fires, naps or yoga sessions that may result. 

Move Around

I’m also one of those people that simply cannot always sit behind a desk. Sometimes kicking your shoes off and cuddling up on the couch or just moving out of your typical workspace can get you into a better headspace. I seriously love sitting out in our open coworking space (preferably on the couches or cushioned chairs) with my laptop and books. 

Enjoy the little things 

Things like the smell of fresh roasted coffee in the morning or the smiles that greet you around the office. Sometimes we just need to take a moment to be grateful for those small things in life. When I enter the parking lot for my work days at Ment, I am forever thankful for that little parking pass that allows me to not have to worry about searching for a spot for 20 minutes! Being able to work downtown in such a beautiful building and with such great people is also uplifting for me. Our members? They love knowing that coffee will be waiting for them and that if they want to take advantage of places in the community, their member perks allow them to do that. 

Comfort Items & Decor

When practicing hygge, it’s all about making a space that works for you. Bring in photos of your loved ones. Decorate your space in a way that brings you happiness. Our community partner is helping us with that this month! Maybe bring in some of the outside with plants, real or fake depending on how well of a plant mom (or dad) you are *shamefully looks away*. Essential oil lovers, we know you are already packing them around with you so embrace it! Bring in that diffuser and let the wellness scents fill your office. Cold natured people or employees of a company that simply doesn’t know how to use the thermostat – do not be ashamed. Keep that blanket close to you or even that heater that you’re probably already hiding under your desk. 

Interact

The Danish are also all about genuine relationships. Interact with your colleagues or fellow office mates. Strike up a conversation or simply give a few greetings and smiles here and there. Basically, just practicing encouragement and spreading good vibes can go along way! Our members are all unique and come from totally different backgrounds and businesses. This makes it the perfect place to get to know those within our own little “Ment community.”

Focus on yourself

Don’t forget to take some time for yourself. Practice self-care and make it a part of your daily routine if you’re not already. Again, it’s all about the little things: take some time for you, step outside on your break, reflect on your day or your goals or make yourself a work playlist. I have been really into coffee shop music and just chill sounds that help me to focus without causing distraction. 

Remember: comfort = productivity.

According to the Happiness Research Institute,“…78% of Danish workers value a safe, cosy and casual atmosphere in the office.” 

Maybe we are not so different here in the U.S. We just didn’t know there was a term for it! So grab those blankets, candles, coffee mugs or anything else that brings you joy and pack it in with you. Get comfortable and get it done! If you need a little extra inspiration, we are only an elevator ride up and a day pass away!

For more information and tips to keep “hygging” on, check out some of our other articles on work-life balance, minimalism and loving where you work.

 

Ment Insider Tour

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If you follow us on instagram, you are probably familiar with what our space looks like by now, However, several people who wonder to our blog have no clue who we are or what we offer as a coworking facility. Head to the link below to check it out and feel free to leave a review on what you think of our space in the comments!

All About the Benefits of a Day Pass. Try it For Yourself!

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If you are scrolling through our site, you are probably familiar with the amenities Ment Cowork has to offer. But have you heard about our day pass or thought about the endless opportunities it could serve you? If you are working in business, quit scrolling and take a few minutes to find out how you could improve. 

For just $25 a day, you can come and work on the second floor of 911 College Street, distraction free. With access to a soundproof phone booth, a conference room and a variety of thoughtfully designed work spaces, Ment offers the amenities to make you look and feel top of the line. Rather than meeting in that overcrowded coffee shop or trying to find some peace and quiet while on your next conference call, give the day pass a chance and find out how much work you could really be getting done. At the end of the day, time is money. I’d say we all can appreciate the value of both of those. 

How much money could you make with out $25 day pass? Don’t ask us…ask a few of our frequent day pass attendees. 

Skylar Wooden, owner of Wooden Writes: “I’m able to do 100% of my work from home. But, working from home sometimes comes with distractions, making it more cost-effective to work outside of the house (e.g. a coffee shop). Though I work in coffee shops often, I cannot have successful client calls with all of the loud chatter. So, buying day passes has allowed me to be in a quiet space with access to a phone booth. The space is also beautiful, so any time I’ve needed branding photos for either of my websites, I’ve had them taken at Ment; I bought a day pass for that as well.”

Kirsty Washam, owner of Fed Up Pharmacist:The Ment Cowork day pass is perfect for my growing business. It gives me a quiet & professional space to work and meet clients. And all of my clients have had wonderful things to say about Ment! I’m thankful Bowling Green has a wonderful space like this.”

 

Click here to purchase a day pass and take your business to the next level. 

 

Stop Using the Excuse “Too Busy”

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“Sorry, I can’t. I’m too busy,”  is a common excuse for people around this time of year. As things pick up, you try to find the time to slow down. Business professionals, students, stay at home mommas, I don’t care who you are. You have definitely pulled this excuse once or twice this season and if you haven’t, I applaud you. Like seriously, you’re a better person than I am. 

 

I’m not writing this post to judge or condemn you, because heck I am so guilty of this myself. I’m here to break down the definition “busy” and help apply it to our lives, so we don’t keep making the same silly mistakes. 

 

To be honest, we are all busy. Whether it be running our children around to their weekly activities, cramming for three tests the following week, or signing a contract regarding a financial business decision. But between these things, we all find ways to fill our free time like scrolling through facebook or watching our favorite netflix show. Not to say these are bad things at all, just pointing out this totally contradicts the excuse of being “too busy.” Busy is described as keeping yourself occupied, so today I ask you, what do you occupy your life with? Even the busiest people in the world find time for the people and things they care about. 

 

I don’t want to confuse this post with the importance of saying no. If something comes up that’s not important to you, let them know. It’s okay to say no, and in fact sounds a whole lot better than saying you’re too busy. It is extremely important to prioritize your life and make time for what is important to you. Next time you try telling someone you are too busy, rather stop talking and listen to them. Ask about the things that are going on in their life, and help find ways they can prioritize their situation. 


Remember, you woke up today to do great things. Do not underestimate yourself. I challenge you to stay positive during this busy season and lift up others, rather than make excuses for yourself.

 

3 Tips to Start September off Right

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As labor day weekend draws to an end, we all hopefully will head back to work this week with cleared minds and hopefully some rest. September has somehow snuck up on us, and can I just say how rude of summer to come and go so quickly. As business men and women, it is essential that we take each and every day to our full advantage. Today, I’m going to offer three tips to start the month off on the right foot and make it the most productive one yet. 

A new month brings the chance to start new, set goals, accomplish more and overall better yourself. Focus on where you’re at today, where you would like to be in the future and the steps you are going to take to get there. 

Get a good night’s sleep: I’m sure you have heard this one before, but how often have you actually tried to enable it in your routine? Leave your work at work, come home and be present with the ones you love and when it is time to unplug, I challenge you to really and truly unplug this month. Leave your cell phone charging across the room, lay your clothes out for the next morning and get to bed at a decent time. Wake up a bit earlier this month than you’re used to, even if it’s just 15 minutes. Use this time to manage morning tasks, answer emails and eat a nutritious breakfast. 

Set Goals: If you don’t have goals, WYD? This month set goals for yourself or your business. Whether it be one big one or three small ones, the ball is in your court. Put these goals somewhere you will look at them multiple times a day and each time you’re working on something, ask yourself if what you’re doing aligns with a specific goal. If it doesn’t, it probably is taking away from something more beneficial you could be doing. And that leads us to…

Avoid Multitasking: My personal worst. This month, rather than micromanaging one hundred little projects, try focusing on one project or task at a time. Decide how you want to manage your ideas and follow a list or timeline to check things off. Believe it or not, this will actually decrease stress and increase productivity. 

Find an accountability partner to help you establish these goals and stick to them. I hope these few tips help you start September off on the best foot possible! 

 

5 Tips to Defuse Conflict in the Workplace

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Conflict is all around us, no matter where we go. It’s people fighting for the closest parking spot to the front at the grocery store. It’s two friends arguing where to eat for lunch. It’s passive-aggressive glances when your coworker walks in late. Conflict, while unavoidable, can be helped through some easy techniques that you can implement in your daily work life. 

First, let’s start off with what conflict is. Conflict can range from a small difference in opinion all the way to two people not being able to be in the same room with one another. I am sure all of us have been in some sort of conflict in our lifetime and I, for one, am not a fan of it. Not all conflict can be harmful, but regardless, it will happen and it is imperative to know how to deal with it when it comes along, especially in the workplace. 

How should you deal with conflict in the workplace?

  1. Be on the lookout. 

I know this may sound easy, but it can be harder than you may think. When you start to notice alarming behavior from one of your coworkers, address it before the conflict gets out of hand. 

  1. Assess the situation. 

Just because you assume a conflict may be rising, don’t assert yourself in like you know best. Before you go saving the day, know the facts. Make sure you have a grasp on the real situation before you address the conflict. 

  1. Listen to both sides. 

We all know people can exaggerate when they are heated or in a difficult situation. Once you hear the other side of the story, you might realize the conflict is just one-sided, or it was all taken out of context. 

  1. Encourage compromise. 

The whole point of addressing a conflict is to ultimately end in a resolution. This step might take a little bit of prying, since people can really be set in their ways and want the resolution to go their way. However, once you can find common ground, a compromise becomes a more attainable goal. 

  1. Be positive. 

Moving forward can be difficult after a big fight. Make sure all is resolved before this stage and then make a point to be positive and encouraging to the other party. Treat the other person in a positive manner. The conflict is resolved, so there is no need for bad blood anymore! 

It is pretty much impossible to go through life without experiencing some sort of conflict, especially when working with so many different types of people in an office setting. Hopefully you can take some of these tips and apply it to your workplace! 

 

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Vulnerability in the Workplace

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Vulnerability and workplace are two words that do not usually mix. The former, a flowery word that concerns itself with feelings and emotions cannot fathom intertwining itself with the hard corporate world of deadlines, investments, and structure. Thus, people seem to hide their emotional selves while at work and bottle them up until they go home for the day.

However, I don’t subscribe to that school of thought. Being vulnerable in your workspace can be the best thing for you. Being open allows you to really, truly connect with coworkers or executives on a deeper level. Every single person has feelings, whether they choose to show them or not. The ability to feel is what makes us humans on the most basic level and what separates us from every other creature on this planet.

Acknowledging vulnerabilities can lead to a more productive and proactive work environment. Being emotionally intelligent allows coworkers to connect deeper, to form lasting relationships, and in turn, get more done. Taking a moment to see emotions, talk about them, and move on really shows strength and humanity.

On the flip side, hiding emotional vulnerabilities can wreak havoc at a place of work. People may hide their feelings because they don’t feel adequate or that their emotions do not matter, but bottling them all up will only lead to a bigger explosion down the line.

Opening your emotions at work will bring about more growth and learning. Vulnerabilities allow for a sense of humanity within a workplace. Genuine connections can blossom once you become more open with yourself and others in your space. Creating vulnerable and intentional conversations can foster true connections.

Being vulnerable applies to leaders as well. In my opinion, the best bosses are ones who connect emotionally and are willing to be vulnerable. Not that an executive needs to be crying all the time or asking too many personal questions, but maybe being open to those things (aside from the crying.) Stepping back as a leader allows other’s ideas to shine and employees to feel more connected, grounded, and engaged in their work.

Egos are nowhere to be found in a vulnerable workplace. Once you take down your personal guards around whatever you might be feeling, your ego will naturally see itself out. Putting your ego aside allows more room to listen and take from others. You have room to acknowledge other people’s ideas and to attach your’s to theirs. Egos can get in the way of a cooperative work environment.

Vulnerability is so important that the coworking industry as a whole has made it one of their core values. Ment has taken that and ran with it and we created our value nourishment based on their tenant of vulnerability. We believe as a space that we are here for your highs and lows. We strive to be expansive and inclusive and to nourish the souls of everyone who walks through our doors.

As a space, Ment wants to make ourselves as comfortable as possible to allow for open conversations. Our lounge has comfy couches, a skylight, and plants to create an environment you want to be in. Our library is color-coded (seriously, I am obsessed with it so come check it out) and organized to allow for better workflow. All the colors in our space are neutral as not to distract, but also to create a calm and reassuring environment.

The moral of the story is simple: being vulnerable allows all the good things about humanity to shine through. Bringing feelings into a work environment is tough, I get that, but it allows people to bring their whole selves to work and not leave a portion of themselves at home. Start by taking a moment to genuinely ask a coworker how they are. Not some quick small talk to start the day, but intentional curiosity about that person. Get to know them on a deeper level, know their families and their history. Begin to foster a vulnerable environment.

Travel & Cowork

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Another great thing about coworking: spaces are opening up all over the place. We aren’t the only ones who offer a first-time free trial day either. One of my new favorite things to do is to try to find a coworking space for me to work from for the day when I travel to different cities. You will find each one stands out from the next and bring their own work concepts to life in many different styles. Below are a few I have visited so far which I 100% recommend.

Covo – St. Louis

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Covo was such a productive escape for the day. It is located in an old bank building in downtown St. Louis and in walking distance from many of the hotels and the arch. Seen here is their main coworking lounge which is where I was stationed in a comfy yet supportive chair and table for about 3 hours. The noise levels were soothing, with music playing overhead and the occasional chatter of a team meeting up but never loud enough to distract.

To top off the experience, Covo offers their first-timers a complimentary drink ticket to their bar, Trust, which opens up at 4 p.m. throughout the week. I just so happened to be working on a day when they were having their member happy hour which was incredible of course. Every person I talked to had a unique story as to what they did for a living and what they liked most about working out of a coworking space. It was a day filled with working + networking which in my book is a very successful day.

Check them out on Instagram: @covostl

Industrious – Downtown Nashville

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Last Thursday, our intern Maddie and I jumped in the car and headed to Nashville for a quest of coworking. This entailed getting tours of all of the following spaces and meeting some pretty awesome community managers who were more than willing to show us the ropes.

First stop was Industrious at their downtown location with community manager, Blake. Blake was nice enough to be the A to all of our Qs about Industrious as a brand and as a leader in the coworking industry. On their website they mention having stunning offices, inviting hospitality and an inspiring community which could not have been more apparent. The sunlight beamed through their ceiling to floor windows overlooking Nashville which wrapped the outsides of the every workspace in the place. Talk about stunning.

Check them out on Instagram: @industriousnashville

Center 615 – East Nashville

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Next, we stopped over at Center 615 who has three buildings that make up their campus. Here we met Beth who gave us a tour of their main building which as you can tell from the photo above was definitely one of a kind. However, what I noticed right off the bat is that they are pet friendly! Let’s just go ahead and put out there that having your furry friend with you throughout the day doesn’t have to be statistically proven to know that it is such an added benefit in the workplace. (If you want to read more about this, feel free to check out this article!)

Besides welcoming pets, this coworking space has many added benefits for its members such as dry cleaning pick up/drop off, discounts at various Nashville businesses, nap & meditation rooms and even partnering coworking spaces around the country for their members to have free work days at. Beth and her team at Center 615 truly do have the details covered so their members can focus on the big picture.

Check them out on Instagram: @center615

Three One Three – Nashville

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The energy in Three One Three was just as positively uplifting as their community manager’s, Taylor, who showed us around at our last stop of the day. Upon walking in, we were greeted with a smile and a sniff – smile being from Taylor, the sniff was from Batman, the office dog. With white walls and floors and pops of color and texture, it is a work space that embodies it’s members and welcomes all.

This coworking space takes it to another level as they say, “Beyond creatives to all business profiles.” Their space includes an entire warehouse dedicated to their e-commerce members who need fulfillment centers to ship products. Past that, every nook and corner in the place has been transformed into a work spot which makes them perfect for teams of all shapes and sizes. It is a transformative space that is 100% made up by the people who are working there.

Check them out on Instagram: @313cowork

There you have it! The list will continue to be added to as we head into the new year. Our challenge for you is to do the same! A simple google search for coworking spots around me when you have some down time while traveling could lead you to some pretty neat places and people who could end up being a great resource for you in the future.

Happy coworking!