On December 14th, 2021, I had the opportunity to work for a day at Rising Tide Innovation Center (RTIC), located in downtown Saint Petersburg.
The future of collaborative work for many professionals and entrepreneurs is represented by coworking places like RTIC.
Some of my best ideas have been brought to fruition, thanks to the ideas and talents of like-minded entrepreneurs, professionals, and students, all working together toward a common goal.
When my partner handed me a brochure for RTIC, I decided to stop by the center to check out what was being offered.
Having walked pass the RTIC location in downtown St. Petersburg several times over the years, it was time to pay a visit and see what it had to offer.
Over the years, I've learned that key to the success of coworking spaces and group collaborations are the environment, those that manage the space, and the community of people that occupy the space.
After completing two walking tours of RTIC, courtesy of Matt Hanlon and Ryan McGahan, my impression was that this workspace had a genuine good vibe to it.
Matt and Ryan were friendly and knowledgeable; the facility was clean, comfortable, well equipped, and pleasant to be in. The people I met were friendly and welcoming.
I arrived at 8:30 AM on a Friday morning, for my first day of work at RTIC.
At the fourth-floor main desk, Ryan greeted me and confirmed that three private meeting rooms were all reserved for my meetings that day.
Matt provided me with a key-fob, as entry to RTIC is secured, with video camera surveillance on each of the floors.
After showing me the location of each of the three meeting rooms that can be reserved by members, I decided to sit at a 'Hot Desk' located in one of the collaboration rooms.
I found a seat at a 'Hot Desk', which are open desks with comfortable chairs, desktop power strips and USB ports for charging.
After setting up my laptop so I could access the high-speed WiFi, I noticed that I could also connect to the WiFi via Ethernet cable port, located at the side of my desk. Nice!
As the morning progressed, I met members of the RTIC community, who were friendly and helpful.
The kitchenette area on each floor is well equipped and stocked with coffee makers and an Espresso bar.
Plain or flavored waters are available, along with an assortment of snacks.
Those bringing their own breakfast, lunch, or dinner for late night sessions, have a refrigerator to keep everything fresh.
In the downtown St. Pete area, there are plenty of places to grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Some restaurants and convenience food eateries also offer delivery services, for those days when you'd rather not leave your space to grab a bite to eat.
After my second meeting of the day concluded, a grabbed a quick lunch at Tony's Pizza, and then headed back to RTIC to wrap up the day.
Many entertainment venues are within walking distance RTIC, for end-of-week or other group celebrations with community members.
Meeting rooms are well equipped, quiet, and comfortable.
Rooms can be reserved via the front desk, RTIC smartphone app, or by using the smart panel at the entrance of every room.
Meeting rooms vary in size and capability, including whiteboards, speakerphones, and whiteboard walls.
Specialty rooms include soundproof booths for phone calls and even a fully equipped podcast studio.
Membership monthly plans offered begin with the Low Tide Virtual Office plan, which provides a business or professional with a mailing address, mail service and phone number.
The High Tide work from home membership plan, offers all the benefits of the Low Tide plan, plus five day passes and four hours of conference room usage per month.
The Breakers Hot Desk plan was designed for professionals who desire access to an open seating hot desk on a 24x7 basis.
The Mavericks dedicated desk plan provides a locking filing cabinet and 24x7 access.
Dedicated work spaces are also available for small businesses with three to five employees. Private executive offices are also available with pricing depending on square footage.
Based on the positive experience during my December workday at RTIC, I reserved a desk space at the end of April via the Mavericks membership plan.
The Breakers Hot Desk plan enabled me to experience working on each of the three floors that RTIC occupies. Each floor space is unique, including the community of people that work and visit each floor space daily.
One of the benefits of having a dedicated desk work space, as compared to a Hotdesk work space, is the time you'll save each day, as monitors, cables, peripheral and other supplies are set up and ready to go.
A locking file cabinet provides ample storage space for equipment storage and supplies. You don't have to lug everything you need to work each day, as with a Hotdesk membership.
Dedicated work spaces feature motorized height-adjustable Smart Desks, which allows you to work standing, sitting, or somewhere in-between, during the course of the day.
You can customize up to four Smart Desk height presets, enabling you to change from sitting to standing work position, with a press of a button.
Each month, RITC hosts three member events: a Morning Networking Breakfast, Wine-Down-Wednesday, and a Friday evening musical Jam Session.
Check back next month for more.