Coworking in Berlin // betahaus

The best products, services or solutions are born out of personal needs. This is the story of betahaus in one sentence. The founders of betahaus needed a place like betahaus for themselves. Their wish was to work together in an inspiring workspace, which was more than just desks and good coffee. When betahaus was founded by Christoph Fahle, Max von der Ahe and Madeleine Gummer, there were no coworking spaces like betahaus in Berlin. Seven years later betahaus is seen as an example in the coworking scene in Europe with locations in Berlin, Hamburg, Sofia and Barcelona.

“ We’ve envisioned a space that functions as a combination of a Vienna-style coffee house, a library, a home office or a university campus. We combine the best aspects of these locations and use them to constantly develop betahaus. Since January 2009, we have been operating in a formerly state-owned space on Prinzessinnenstraße, close to Moritzplatz in the heart of Kreuzberg. At betahaus, we seek to implement our own ideas from work and life, as well as to invite social entrepreneurs, digital people, makers and designers to share, exhibit, test and further develop their ideas and prototypes in our space. Who knows what may emerge from this flow of ideas…”

High quality value is no longer created in classic offices

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The future of work //

The starters of this coworking environment have a clear vision on the future of work. High quality value is no longer created in classic offices. Added value is created in different locations, at different times, in changing team constellations and without permanent employment. This new type of work constantly seeks new real and virtual locations. “Open, digitally networked and collaborative workplaces are required, serving as an incubation platform for innovation and production. Betahaus is such a working space.”

The CO in coworking //

“ Coworking is an emerging trend and a new pattern in worklife. Typically work-at-home professionals or independent contractors or people who travel frequently end up working in relative isolation. Coworking is the social gathering of a group of people, who are still working independently, but who share values and who are interested in the synergy that can happen from working with talented people in the same space.”

Betahaus preaches what they practice as well. For instance, founder Christoph Fahle helps corporate companies to understand the transformation of work and the coworking phenomenon. Besides that, he’s a board member of the European Coworking Assembly.

“ Business accelerators, business incubators and executive suites do not seem to fit into the coworking model, because they often miss the social, collaborative, and informal aspects of the process, with management practices closer to that of a cooperative, including a focus on community rather than profit. “

Fertile soil //

One of the things I notice at betahaus is the ease in pointing out the things that really matter, which creates fertile soil for successful entrepreneurship and collaboration. Talks, feedback and discussions on trust, empathy and synergy are part of daily life in this coworking environment. Things that are often more difficult to address or put the finger on in traditional organisations. In a coworking environment people know that getting connected is the first step towards a sustainable co-operative working relation. The focus of the betahaus-team is to feed this fertile soil constantly. Creating the best circumstances for coworking is core business. The rest will follow… people, ideas and community first.

Pay it forward culture //

It’s a common conviction in a coworking culture: Share your skill and get expertise from others in return to make your business stronger. Not because this is a rule or mandatory, but just because it’s fun, it’s one of the reasons you joined the community and the exchange is clear. By learning from each other and by sharing the entrepreneurial drive and energy, businesses develop.

Time is money, but in a coworking space sharing time is seen as a business boost and a good investment. It’s not a coincidence that Berlin is one of the top global start-up ecosystems and has a strong investor climate. One of the reason betahaus’ yearly event ‘People in Beta’ is not only a celebration for and by betahaus members; it’s as well an investors day.

People in Beta //

On August 29th betahaus opened their doors for its biggest event of the year: the People In Beta Festival. It was a perfect opportunity to learn more about the coworking culture, start-up ecosystem and maker culture in Berlin and Europe. The program was a great mix of powerful talks, inspiring panel discussions, interactive workshops and networking possibilities. Next to the brand new Investors Day, the festival also hosted the global finals of betahaus’ international start-up competition BETAPITCH.

Again, I noticed the positive mind-set of the participants, willingness to help each other as well as the support system this coworking community offers. I enjoyed a interesting palette of inspiring talks.

‘Brain Trends and Mind Gadgets’ by Prateep Beed helped me to understand a bit more about perceiving reality. Daniela Marzavan’s talk on her approach in creating collaboration in the innovation scene in Colombia, was really inspiring. She knows how to build bridges.

I was happy to see how curious people are about topics as Happiness Management en Design Thinking. Jörn Hendrick showed us how to open up a network, how we can use what we have, if we start sharing our needs and skills. Thanks for the great insights en good energy people at beta!

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Read more on the betahaus facilities, membership and the festival //
www.betahaus.com
www.peopleinbeta.com

Pictures // betahaus & Rosan Gompers (FESTIVAL)

 

The Style Office is a storytelling magazine on urban work- & lifestyle aimed at the next generation creatives & entrepreneurs. We love to share ideas and stories on new ways of working and creative entrepreneurship AND we love to inspire you on a great work- and lifestyle // hashtag #designyourlife // read more about us and learn what we can do for you. We’d love to meet you!

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