10 things we learned at the Virtual GCUC Unconference

By Stormy McBride On April 16, 2020 In CoworkingConferenceCommunityBeginnings


Last week we held the first GCUC Unconference online to tackle the “real stuff” for our community. It was a huge success with over 700 registrants and utilized breakout rooms on zoom to create a unique experience.   Unconference:


  1. Community is Essential. Support is all around you.
    “Now’s not the time to go into the corner and freak out about your business.  It’s the time to lean in and focus on your community.” -Cat Johnson, Cat Johnson Co
  2. No man is an island.  We are all in this together.
    “It was a thrill to see such a big turnout, with new and familiar faces, knowing that all of us are having similar experiences with our businesses right now. The feeling that GCUC has our back is invaluable. I also learned some marketing tips that will greatly help me with my sales pipeline moving forward.”  -Amy King, GoodWork
  3. Members. Always. We love our members.
    “Community leaders are still relentless in their desire to continue creating value for their members, even in the face of growing adversity and uncertainty about their own businesses.”  -Hector Kolonas, included.co
  4. Turkey sandwich the stress. Keeping it informative but light.
    “We have set up a private FB group for each space and are trying to be present in each space. Have been sharing resources – small business – sharing safety practices for space – to stay current w policy changes in the counties.  Talking about self-care and sharing funny memes – keeping content light.” -Karina Patel, Cloudvo
  5. Members helping members. Help your community stay connected together.
    “Working on member generated content.  Show how they’re helping members and remember your members are equally stressed.” -Sam Jackson, Ripple Coworking & Law Firm Suites
  6. Inventive Income.  Rev up your revenue.
    “Explore the option of renting your furniture for people working from home.” -Tabari Brannon, Mesh Cowork
  7. Help where you can. Donate.  Volunteer.  Advocate.
    “We are doing a lot of community non-profit activities like timely clothing drives or other things that are a need.  We share a weekly shortlist with our members.” -Jennifer Belk, LOOM Coworking
  8. Virtual Ventures. Take your community to the web.
    “I have been doing virtual tours and sending them out.  Leads are finding us from social media and search engines.” -Rosemary Mitchell, Office Evolution
  9. Embrace the imminent. The next coworking BOOM.
    “Coworking was born out of the last recession where a growing freelance community sought professional workspace and community. As the COVID pandemic subsides and the workforce transitions out of working from home, companies will adopt distributed workplace policies to allow remote work, and their employees will seek out the same professional workspace and community that freelancers found in coworking. This will be the next wave of demand for the coworking industry to embrace.” -Eric Zellhart, LiquidSpace
  10.  Be present but prepared.  Just breathe.  Take it one day at a time.
    “We have to be very careful – we are also building marketing campaigns for when we come out on the other side. So we need to be in the moment but also prepared for the future.” -Mark Burge, CityCentral Office

Final Thoughts: 

“It’s pretty widely known that the unconference sessions are one of the most popular features of GCUC every year. This virtual expression had the same spirit – recognizing that the expertise is in the house, not on the stage. Our tribe loves to connect and learn from each other. And we appreciate every opportunity to do just that – up close or far apart.”  -Daryn DeZengotita, Table Coworking & Social Impact Spaces

“You can only negotiate if you are in a conversation – I have been shocked by the number of coworking operators who still have not called their landlord!

  • Establishing and defending a position is the wrong way to start a negotiation. Build a bond/bridge by acknowledging the common problem.
  • Negotiation strength comes from preparation – organize your financial data before you call your landlord.
  •  In negotiations, talk less and listen more.”  -Benjamin Dyett, The DecoGroup & Co.RE


Recordings will be posted in GCUC Membership in the next week!

*Some quotes were edited for clarity.