Monday, February 06, 2006

People Make the Space

I work in a large room with two doors and no windows. One door opens onto a hallway with the opposite wall all windows so that by opening our door I see outside and can determine whether it is day or night. There are three large support columns in the office which is about fifty feet by thirty feet. We have three desks and three tables, a mixture of chairs, old office furniture stored by a business down the hall, and until recently a collection of mis-matched office partitions leaning against one wall. All of the items of furniture are well used loaners from the building and the staff.

The room is painted white with much fluorescent lighting. It used to be the library for the Regional Sewer District. One might think that such a space would be very confining, but I have not yet mentioned what is also in this space. This space is filled with innovative minds that are dedicated to building the economy in the region. These are people who are open and honest and live by building trusting relationships with and between others. There are multiple initiatives posted on the wall on constantly changing working papers.

Every day that I am there, there are people sticking their heads in to say hello, comment on what they or their organizations are thinking and doing. They want to discuss their ideas, our ideas, or someone else's ideas. Often they grab a cup of coffee and a cookie or bagel. Our office and forums seem to run on cookies and coffee.

There are days there is so much interesting conversation andstrategicc doing that it is hard for me to get done those tasks which I had planned for myself. All of the activity makes the day challenging as well as fun and rewarding.

And, as often is the case, it is the people that make the space. Come be part of it.

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