Johnson Cook

Atlanta tech investor. Entrepreneur.

Johnson Cook - Atlanta tech investor. Entrepreneur.

Scale as a Key Success Factor

 

When I give tours of the Atlanta Tech Village, my favorite part is sharing some of the stats about the awesome momentum that has already formed around the idea.

  • We now have over 300 individual members paying for desks, this makes up 105 startups
  • Startup Chowdown is regularly @ 190 attendees – Fridays at noon
  • Suites and offices post-renovation are basically sold out
  • In the last 90 days months we hosted over 120 events
  • Mega-events like the monthly Atlanta Startup Village are attracting 250+ attendees with zero marketing spend
  • Startups in the Village are finding they have a noticable recruiting advantage
  • More investor/startup connections are happening that otherwise wouldn’t have happened
  • Startups are failing and rebooting faster

A common question after all these stats is: WHY is it so successful?  HOW is it so successful?

The first and most obvious answer is that Atlanta has rich resources and we’re simply tapping into something that was already just under the surface waiting to be tapped.   But I think there’s a more tangible answer to the specific success of the Village.

One key is our scale.

Scale with coworking space
For a coworking space, the Village is a massive. 103,000 square feet is simply giant.

Financials
For the model to work, with such volatile market, the numbers have to be big, because the margins are tiny.

Variety
The programs and events that we do are awesome. But some of them only have 5 people show up. They still get a ton of value. But if 5 of 300 members show up, you start to see that if you only have 50 members, then

Volunteers and Energy
Programs just happen. All the time. Ideas pop up, then they are executed. With so many people in one high density area, there are always volunteers ready to jump in and DO something.

Staff
Of course having 8 full time staffers is an amazing key advantage for our mission.  Volunteer organizations are awesome, part timers have plenty of utility but there is an exponential advantage to full time team members, working for a paycheck AND the satisfaction of a job well done.

When we set out on this project, we knew that the building size would be an asset, but we underestimated how it’s a compounding effect of scale to success for a community+ecosystem endeavor such as the Village.

 

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