For many creative professionals, making it on your own is the dream. Getting to create your own structure and work on your own terms makes for a huge growth opportunity; however, you may not feel you’re growing much in your career if you end up typing away alone in your apartment day in, day out…slipping perilously down a long, dark click hole of doom.
Simple solution: Co-working! A co-working space can offer the community you need to stay connected and stimulated, plus some membership perks like workshops and, in some cases, health insurance. Find one that fits your working style and start 2017 strong in your career goals.
Centre for Social Innovation (720 Bathurst St)
The CSI is the first co-working space in Toronto, and since it began in 2004, it’s evolved into an effective, socially conscious community. It’s a homey, whimsical space in the annex (also see locations at 192 and 215 Spadina, and 65 Parliament St.) and is home to many startup businesses and solopreneurs that work for social change – Jane’s Walk, Earth + City, Good Foot Services among them. Get a community membership for $30/month.
Shecosystem (703 Bloor St.)
Here, it’s all about co-creating an environment where succeeding as an entrepreneur doesn’t compromise your holistic well-being (yogis, this is your jam). Become a Shecosister and get access to mentorship workshops hosted by established female entrepreneurs, tech sessions and wellness workshops, and a daily opening and closing circle. Choose a membership that lets you drop in daily, starting at $30/month.
Artscape Youngplace (180 Shaw St)
In a former elementary school, Artscape Youngplace has 75,000 square feet of diverse co-working space – classrooms and studio spaces with sectioned-off compartments, open performance spaces, dark rooms, ceramic studios and a hallway gallery. If you like a big, airy working environment and hanging in the company of other artists, become a flex studio member for $50/year.
East Room (50 Carroll Street, Suite 200)
This Pinterest-ready co-working office space (formerly a factory, founded and furnished by third-generation antiques dealers) caters to creative professionals in tech, design, and art. Membership prices are steep ($250/month for unlimited access to the work lounge), but it means working in the company of some of the city’s creative elite.
The Foundry (376 Bathurst Street)
The Foundry co-working space accommodates a mix of entrepreneurs, freelancers and artists. Founder Ashley Procter also co-founded the (world’s first) Co-working Health Insurance Plan for freelancers, which Foundry members can get in on. Memberships start at $190/month.
Women on the Move (2111 Dundas St. W)
If you want to start a career in sales, or you’re selling a product or a service, these ladies can help. Women on the Move was founded by two women who each have diverse, successful careers in sales under their belts and are happy to share their knowledge. Get ten days of working space per month and discounts on workshops for $125.