2013 SME Assembly Lithuania posterLast year before the break I had the chance to be invited as a speaker to the 2013 SME Assembly in Lithuania, to talk about my experience as an entrepreneur with the creation of the Betacowork Coworking Brussels. Hundreds of civil servants from all the EU countries gathered with a group of entrepreneurs to discuss the past and future policies to support SMEs in Europe.
My role was to give a testimonial and discuss in the Voice of the Entrepreneur panel (full programme here), together with five other European entrepreneurs. The video of the panel has not yet been released, but the team from Mothership UK interviewed me and has released two videos discussing the topic of the event, SMEs, and also my very dear coworking.

All about coworking

The main topics discussed here are:

  • Why did I start coworking? Because I HATED WORKING AT HOME! If you work at home you probably agree with me and thousands of others on the advantages and benefits of coworking.
  • How can you know if coworking is good for you? Go for a tryout at the coworking space, work there for a day, and talk to the other members, just like if you where going to stay. If you want to test coworking at the Betacowork, signup here.
  • What happens with noise? It is not a big deal and there are a lot of solutions. Our biggest complain when we opened the Betacowork was that we were too quiet: a coworking space is an office, not a library.
  • Privacy: this is not a hippy commune, you work for yourself with others around you that are doing just the same. You work for your business and you share what you want with whom you want.

Government’s Role in Supporting Small Business Across Europe

The big question here is, what role do you think the different governments have in supporting small businesses across Europe?
My take is that governments have a role, they have to guarantee a playing field, but are never going to be the champions of entrepreneurship, those are and will always be the entrepreneurs.
PS: for those worried about my tired look, yes I have rested during the vacation 🙂