What’s it like to run a Cotivation session?

Our first Cotivation Organizer Training group is just wrapping up, and we could not be more excited about how well it’s gone. Watching new Cotivation groups coalesce and grow has been an absolute pleasure, and we’re already eagerly planning our next session for organizers. If you’re interested in starting your own Cotivation group, please drop us a line! Training begins the week of August 24th, and is scheduled to help you get rolling right at the beginning of the busy fall season.

What can you expect from running Cotivation in your coworking space? Growing and improving your group facilitation skills, getting some things done, and most importantly, getting to know a small group of your members much, much better. The connections born from a shared experience like Cotivation can help to build strong bonds amongst members of your coworking community. The value of these bonds really cannot be overstated – they are the building blocks upon which your healthy community can flourish.

We spoke with two of our new Cotivation organizers, and wanted to share some of their experiences with you. Kaylyn started the first Cotivation group at the Halton HiVE in Burlington, Ontario. Ruby ran her first Cotivation group at Office Nomads in Seattle, WA.

What was your experience like as an organizer?

K: This was my first Cotivation – or any group facilitation – experience, so I was really unsure what to expect as a novice. The overall experience was very positive. I learned a lot about managing a group of adults, how group dynamics work and I got to know a lot about the group of individuals which was a bonus.

R: I learned to ask questions that could tie what one member was talking about into what another member had mentioned to try to remove myself from the spotlight a little bit. Probably the most valuable thing I learned was to not be afraid of the silence. It was really easy to just want to talk to fill up the space. But if I just waited, someone always said something.

Were there any great stories that came up during your Cotivation sessions? 

R: One of my favorite conversations we had was about how hard it is to get out of bed in the morning. Katie had a story about the alarm clock she had when she was in school that had wheels and would run away from her when it went off. An excellent device to get her out of bed, but had to be given up when she start cohabiting. It was in one of our earlier sessions and it was really great to get everyone involved, engaged, and laughing. I was glad we could all find a common ground and it seemed like it really connected all the Cotivators early on.

K: After we were done our very last session, one member, Josh, wrapped it up with something like, “also, (pointing at James), I need to talk to you about updating my website, (pointing at Kune), I need to talk to you about video, (pointing at Jenny), and I need to talk to you about marketing.” His goal was to get to know members of the HiVE and network. It was pretty cool.

Has Cotivation made an impact on your coworking community?

K: Having Cotivation as an option is a huge value add to members; meeting people, creating bonds and being more successful with their work is a big reason why entrepreneurs join coworking spaces and Cotivation assists with all of these things. I know that there are many other members that are interested in what we were doing for the past 6 weeks, and I think it can become a movement which will definitely impact our space on a larger level.

Now that it’s all over, would you do it again? 

R: I would definitely do Cotivation again. I enjoyed having that time every week to really connect with people in the space and hear about their projects. I also got a lot of my own things done, which was awesome.

K: Absolutely. I plan on holding round 2 in the fall!

Interested in starting a Cotivation group in your coworking space or collaborative community setting? Drop us a line – we’d love to hear from you.