Those are the exact words that Liz uttered when she proposed that she would quit her job to start Link, one of Austin’s first coworking spaces. As entrepreneurs, we’ve all heard it before. The naysayers, disbelievers, pessimists; they’re the fuel that burns a fire in our belly and pushes us to prove them wrong. And that’s exactly what Liz did. She quit her cushy, corporate job and set out to create one of the first few coworking spaces in Austin.
I met Liz while she was moderating a Girls Get Sh!t Done panel. She spoke candidly of enjoying all aspects of negotiations and I could tell she meant every word of it. Her strong presence and no bullshit attitude demands respect, but what drew me most to her was her entrepreneur story that we all are familiar with. She set out to solve a problem that she saw and dealt with on a daily basis. Progress in technology allows us to work anywhere but common, public spaces had not kept up. Rather than pile into cafes, restaurants and book shops with their many distractions, Liz creates a space meant for work and productivity. She states, “it doesn’t matter what you do, it matters what you need.”
The Grown Up Working Space
As we sit talking at a community desk in the middle of Link, Liz jokes about how she takes less offense now about Link being coined as “the grown up working space.” The title fits as the very first thing I noticed when I walked in was that there were people of all different ages, gender and professions. Some spaces concentrate on different communities whether it be tech, arts, or life stages (whether that be the company or person). Link concentrates on efficiency and people with a “get shit done” attitude.
Coworking Made For Productivity
When you walk through the front door, the wisping of the white noise machine greets you. It’s quiet enough to concentrate without the eerily ringing of silence. The whole wall of Link is lined with tall windows opening up to a sprawling green area with mature trees and a nature pond. It’s an open floor plan with sections thoughtfully broken up with different seating and atmosphere. I chose to sit midway down at a large table with head lamps, multiple outlets and ergonomic chairs. I love being able to work on my own without distraction but still be amongst people. On the other far end I see a group of people chatting with light music and a candle in the background. Whether you’re wanting to isolate yourself or chat with others, it’s simple enough to find the right fit all within one open space.
Liz started out like most entrepreneurs with an idea. Sometimes it’s hard to see a founder’s story and relate, as their accomplishments overshadow the hard work involved. She is now leading the largest coworking conference in the world (https://gcuc.co/) and expanded Link into over 25,000 sq ft of coworking space. Take comfort in knowing that everything offered, whether in space or in resources, is thoughtfully planned out from someone who just had an idea and wanted a better solution.
Who Should Join?
Hidden in the Village shopping center off Anderson Lane, Link has the beautiful park-like feel but is just a quick hop over to restaurants and shops. It’s an easy option for people looking for something close by who are in the North Austin area and offers a range of spaces for those who just want a space during work hours, 24/7 access or office space for their team. People often say that every coworking space is different so don’t just try one and strike coworking off your list of what’s for you.