Editor’s note: In advance of our CultureMap Social: The Innovation Edition, we chatted with our event partners about the Dallas startup scene. Next up: Nick Clark of Common Desk.
Inspired by the relationships and wisdom gleaned from working with diverse partners in Dallas’ commercial real estate arena, Nick Clark, founder and CEO of Common Desk, set out to create a space for startups, freelancers, and burgeoning businesses in Deep Ellum. (CultureMap also used to office there.)
We talked to Clark about Common Desk and what makes Dallas the place to be for entrepreneurs and startups.
CultureMap: What makes the startup community in Dallas special?
Nick Clark: The Dallas startup community has differentiated itself from other cities because of a handful of people that have created an organized ecosystem here. There’s also a diversity of industries represented by the startups.
CM: What is something that people don’t know about doing business here?
NC: Dallas is a large city, but business is still accomplished relationally. This is why it is important to stay plugged in to local networking events as a business owner.
CM: Why do you think Dallas is as important an entrepreneurial hub as cities like San Francisco or Austin?
NC: Dallas is able to offer something different. The city not only gives entrepreneurs access to money and talent, but it also provides a lower cost of living and lower barriers to entry.
CM: Sum up Dallas in three words.
NC: Exciting, inviting, diverse.
CM: How does your organization fit into what’s happening on the startup scene?
NC: We provide flexible and inspiring office space to entrepreneurs and startup companies that are looking to plug into the Dallas startup community.
CM: What does innovation look like to you?
NC: Innovation happens when people fix an existing problem with a new idea or product, or when someone invents an entirely new product or service.
CM: What is Common Desk doing that’s different than anyone else in Dallas?
NC: Our focus is to bring great coworking spaces to neighborhoods that already have vibrant communities. This is why we’re in areas like Deep Ellum and Oak Cliff.
CM: Why is it important for everyone to have a place to work?
NC: Nobody really wants to be an office nomad forever. It is important for all of us to have a place to go where we’re able to connect with others and enjoy the luxuries of nice office amenities.
CM: What’s it like to have so much diversity at Common Desk?
NC: It is the main ingredient to our success. Our diversity has led to many members making professional connections that has led to new clients, new employees, and even new businesses altogether.
Buy tickets to the CultureMap Social: The Innovation Edition, which takes place September 30, 6 pm, at 129 Leslie.