Unless you have some personal cash that you are willing to burn, we think spending money on “a place to work” before you have customers is wrong. In our customer discovery journey, talking to dozens of folks who have started companies, there is a progression to getting this right. Step #1 is not WeWork. Here’s the plan:
Start by working remotely (WFH).
Sit in coffee shops and common areas if you are in urban settings. Some good ones in Boston?
100 Federal Street, BOA building. Coffee spot, lunch, secret restroom.
284 Congress Street, Boloco building.
1 Financial Center. Take the escalator upstairs. This one is quiet.
The District. Seaport District. Good energy.
Do you have any friends that would let you camp out in an underutilized corner of their office for free? Ask. You may have to travel a bit.
If you have investors, can you sit in their space?
Maybe WeWork makes sense at this stage for the right folks.
Could you sublease space from a friend?
Try a more formal sublease. Shorter-terms. Flexibility. Often furnished. Brokers are great here.
Our view is that you should have traction before paying for work space. If you are scrappy and tough, there are lots of ways to stretch before you need to cut checks.