Like-minded people @Rocket Labs

Meeting Rolf Rasmussen, CEO of Rocket Labs was a real pleasure. Easy to contact through email and Rolf was able to meet on a short notice, willing to tell me all about this place for ‘like-minded geeks’ (tekst on website…). Rolf welcomed me at Rocket Labs with great openness and we discovered soon we have a mutual understanding on the work and work-not’s in a workspace like Rocket Labs. Rolf spends a full time job on the management of Rocket Labs, facilitating the working community and putting Rocket Labs on the map in Copenhagen and abroad…

Rocket Labs is an office space for tech and digital workers. All companies, who have their home base at Rocket Labs, have their roots in IT. Rocket Labs is dedicated solely to tech start-ups and digital entrepreneurs.

Why is that?

‘ We believe that the collaboration between workers and companies who speak the same language and are in adjoining fields of expertise, creates added value. Not only for the company, but also for their customers. We mix more experienced entrepreneurs with start-ups, +1 companies and freelancers. By facilitating co-operation we create a highly specialized and skill intense network. A network that is flexible towards customers and scalable. It works: the level of succeeding is very high. There’s a lot of sparring between people. I have only seen two companies move out.‘

What happened?

‘ Sometimes people start working in a place like this, starting as entrepreneurs, expecting clients to be all over the place and the work coming to them. That’s not how it works, of course. In this start-up culture everybody has something to bring and share, but you have to take initiative.’

You value highly of the start-up culture, but there are not only start ups here?

‘ We really try to stick to that start-up feel, although some companies exist three years now (for us that is still a start-up). The start-up culture creates the perfect context for an entrepreneur and that’s how things ‘happen’ over here. We try to avoid the more corporate style, where everything, including accounting, HR and marketing is arranged on a central level. These facilities also exist in Copenhagen. We try not to be too settled, although we grow in our experiences of course. It’s not all shits & giggles.’

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How did it all start?

‘ Actually, we were 3 companies with too much space in our office. So we started renting out space to others, friend-companies and freelancers. We noticed that the idea held more to it than sharing square meters. We started sharing knowledge, ideas, projects etc. We are still open to new people and offer multiple ways to join us, from a Rocket address (business address @Rocket Labs, access to facilities and events) to a fixed personal- or team workspace. But we’re also very open to students who want to spend a day here, working on their thesis or even you could work here, you’re welcome!’

Tnx, but I’m not a tech person…

‘ Well, we have had some bloggers before. Real cool co-operations on online marketing emerged! ’

With this openness you keep the community aspect alive?

‘ Yes, we try to kick-start the community all the time with discussions, events, making sure everybody knows each other, drinks on Friday and we lunch together. Also by being approachable. We do not have a screening. You only need to work in the digital field. But we don’t overdo the community building. We try to provoke, but we don’t want to steal too much of everybody’s precious time, we all have our jobs to do.’

The space itself is also open

‘ We feel accessibility towards each other is key. Spontaneous meet-ups, hearing things from each other is important. So we keep the space open. If you want silence, just put on a headphone or go to a meeting space. We love the dynamics here. Context as an influencer on collaborations.’

What are your plans?

‘ We try to scale the eco-system, that’s also part of my job. Because we work highly digitally, it’s very easy to connect wilt other digital workers around the world. Around these co-operations we want to create workspaces, because we feel it’s important to meet person-to-person too. Create the online connection and facilitate it offline. We assigned at a public fund, to facilitate our growth. We are on a mission and feel we’re on the right track.’


Top image // Rocket Labs