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Starting-up your business in Greece, could a coworking space benefit you?

Lucy is a US citizen who decided to move away and live in Greece. She is a marketer and start-up advisor, and she recently launched the website for her new company The Port. For the last couple of months she has been working from Stone Soup, so we thought to ask her about her experience and how is life for her in Greece.

In the summer of 2016, Lucy traveled to Greece on holiday and fell in love with the country. By the end of the year, she had become educated on the local tech community in Athens, and made the move to bring her skills to a new market. Since arriving in Greece over a year and a half ago, Lucy has been getting to know the local tech scene and culture, working with startups and small businesses both in Greece and the States. She is using her experience to better understand the needs of startups here, and identify the best practices from Silicon Alley (New York City) that could be adapted to help Greek startups grow.

This year, Lucy officially launched The Port, a startup resources hub and consultancy that is “helping startups navigate unchartered waters.” Specifically, in the Greek Market, The Port is helping local startups adapt and leverage the strategies that have helped the rapid growth of American tech companies.

Lucy joined Stone Soup in search of a shared space to surround herself with creative energy and inspiring hustle, and for all the other coworking space benefits that come with it. The welcoming community and open space office layout provides her with a “tight-knit community” enabling her to interact and collaborate with “creative and bright minds.”  The location was also a big plus and attracted Lucy to the space. Working in the heart of Athens, she is in walking distance from all other central neighborhoods—like Greek food hub, Syntagma Square and the famous Monastiraki Square and Flea Market.

To answer our initial question, Lucy felt that setting up shop in a local coworking space has greatly helped in both her transition into the Greek lifestyle and the successful launch of her business.

We would like to thank Lucy for her kind words, and to wish her lots of success!

More about Lucy:

Lucy grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan and spent her university years in Philadelphia where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in business from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. After graduating, she went on to join IBM Global Business Services in New York City. After spending some time in corporate America, Lucy decided to make the shift to working with technology startups: early-stage e-commerce game Drop’ Til You Shop  and visual commerce platform Curalate. To learn more about The Port and the services it offers for Greek startups, go to the official website www.totheport.com

The Coworking Space Concept: Through the Lens of an Intern

After working at Stone Soup for the past 2 months, I can easily say that the community of people working in this space are welcoming, kind, and made the transition into an entirely different culture, almost effortless for me. I was introduced to many aspects of the local culture through food and drinks, by my coworkers – which is reflective of the kind of place the Stone Soup is.

Throughout my stay, I conducted interviews with several Stone Soup residents, which gave me a more specific insight into what they were doing and what lead them to their current position. This also gave me the chance to properly meet the people in the office, that I was seeing every day, in an organic and informal way. To a college student like me, hearing about how career paths can differ so drastically, is knowledge that both placates my worries about the future, and excites me for what’s to come.

                                           

I also gained experience with SEO marketing, which I previously knew nothing about. My understanding of SEO is very multi-faceted in the way that I was taught about it – I learnt about SEO from many different people around the office, who gave me many approaches to tackle SEO, which I could look at and consider on my own. This form of interaction, in which ideas and knowledge can be exchanged at many levels, with different attitudes, is something that about the coworking space concept that I highly appreciated.

My unique experience here can be attributed to a variety of factors, but an overarching theme revolves around the different kinds of people that I have continually met throughout my stay. The diverse job-fields that I encountered within Stone Soup, broke down the preceding connotations and traditional assumptions that I had about the “work place”. The benefits of a coworking space span a much larger scale than I had previously anticipated – the framework is not limited to startups, but is rather a window into the way that different local and social networks can function.

Many aspects of my experience here have been shaped by, and are a result of Stone Soup, an environment that fosters inclusivity in every sense of the word. There is no way for me to show my appreciation for what Stone Soup has shown me, and the kinds of opportunities that have begun to form as a result of my time here, other than by thanking each and every person that I came across during my stay. I am excited for the future of Stone Soup, and for anyone that has the chance to be a part of the community, even if for just a short while.

The Coworking Community in Athens: Cécile’s experience in a shared office space!

Cécile is a newly arrived translator here at Stone Soup! Her work consists mainly of proof reading and translation, form Greek to French, for French publishing houses.

Cécile grew up in Saint-Etienne, France, and has a background in literature, latin, ancient Greek and modern Greek. After graduating from University, she spent 2 years teaching, but realised that she was interested in pursuing other aspects of her degree. This lead her to proof reading, for which she made the transition, and in parallel began doing some translations from Greek to French as a freelancer.

After coming to Athens, Cécile found that she needed to work away from home, as she preferred having some separation between her home space, and work space. Stone Soup provides an element of symbiosis to Cécile – a convenient balance between working alone, as well as having the opportunity to socialise and interact with other freelancers.

Cécile highlights the importance of having a good office atmosphere, in which someone with a job like hers can be stimulated socially. Furthermore, as she comes from France, connecting easily to the local community, through the location and the people, is an aspect Cécile places a lot of emphasis on.

Cécile is currently working on translating a Greek novel into French, which is the biggest project she has worked on thus far. As Cécile’s work as a freelancer requires being fairly mobile in terms of the kind of work she is doing, having a community of people to work around brings about a certain sense of stability to the instability of her job.