Work from home realities precede the Covid-19 pandemic, but have been uniquely cemented over the last two years. Whether your new colleagues are your family members or your house plants, coffee breaks aren’t quite the same.
It’s especially challenging if you’re a founder or part of a small startup; a shared workspace and opportunities to connect with the larger community and networking are crucial to the success of your business.
If you’re tired of working at Starbucks and Zoom brain is your new unwelcome colleague, an innovation space might be the right option for you. Innovation spaces offer growing teams an opportunity to connect with an engaged community of founders, access key networking opportunities, and have dedicated workspace for focus-time or collaboration.
If you’re new to the game, it can be challenging to know what to look for. We have you covered.
Flexible access is key. It’s important for you and your team to have easy access to a convenient location whenever you need. Like a gym membership, an innovation space should allow you to tap in and out.
An engaged founder community. With the decline of daily offices, an innovation space can be an opportunity for your team to meet, brainstorm, and have creative syncs. Beyond that, it can be inspiring to have similarly engaged teams around you who can offer guidance and opportunities to collaborate… or, at the very least, commiserate over shared challenges while you catch a coffee break.
Easy access to networking opportunities. At an innovation space you can connect with other founders and partners in the area directly, which saves time and increases the chances that you’ll make that key connection that furthers your business. Plus, some innovation spaces offer events and workshops that are exclusive to members, which can help your team develop the right skills to grow your business and introduce you to potential collaborators, talent, partners, or funding opportunities.
A safe, comfortable space. Different innovation spaces offer different membership models, but in general you should seek out a safe, comfortable and well-equipped space. Particularly through the less-than-predictable Covid waves, it’s important to have a space with clear protocols and guidance, so that you can stop worrying about safety and focus on your business.
ventureLAB operates a 50,000 square-foot innovation hub that is home to over 45 tech companies and innovation partners. is a leading technology hub that supports tech entrepreneurs and small businesses. Located in York Region, Canada’s densest technology cluster, we have supported over 2,000 entrepreneurs since 2011. We welcome tech startups looking to transition out of isolated work environments and become part of an innovation cluster in hardware, MedTech, and enterprise software.
Our membership options are designed for hybrid teams of various sizes, and come with access to ventureLAB's 50,000 sq.ft Innovation Space in Markham and our satellite location at the Pierre Berton Resource Library in Vaughan. As a member of our community, you can test your product in a real-working environment, showcase your product onsite, and even access a $7 million prototyping and testing lab at a discounted price.
Both of ventureLAB’s spaces offer three key pillars for your business:
We have virtual and in-person opportunities membership models for networking, connecting your team, and accessing a diverse community of tech founders and partners. If you’re interested in transitioning out of work-from-home, join us for an informal Space FAQ session on June 9 at our exclusive space in Pierre Berton Resource Library in Vaughan. Learn more.
ventureLAB is a leading global founder community for hardware technology and enterprise software companies in Canada. Located at the heart of Ontario’s innovation corridor in York Region, ventureLAB is part of one of the biggest and most diverse tech communities in Canada. Our initiatives focused on raising capital, talent retention, commercializing technology and IP, and customer acquisition have enabled thousands of companies to create over 4,500 jobs and raise more than $200 million in investment capital. At ventureLAB, we grow globally competitive tech titans that build-to-scale in Canada, for global markets.