How An Open Mind Will Help Your Company Win | Cowork7/24
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How An Open Mind Will Help Your Company Win

May 4, 2018
KAPTAR coworking space

Coworking Spaces Help Your Company Grow

Many industries have changed completely over the last 15 years, due to both the rise of the internet and the economic crisis. The companies that were stuck in their ways didn’t make it, but the entrepreneurs who dared to be adaptable saw the possibilities and have now once again thriving businesses. For many, coworking spaces helped them move towards their new company structures.

I talked to Réka from ANRÉ Tours, a Hungarian travel agency that was founded in 2003 by Réka and her best friend. As we all know, the way people prepare their holidays has changed enormously and this industry was hit hard by the crisis. Yet Réka kept an open mind and saw the opportunities and will be celebrating her 15th anniversary next year.

Anre Tours Budapest

‘I used to work as the Ski & Advernture department manager at one of the biggest Hungarian travel agencies and my co-founder was handling holidays to exotic destinations at another big company,’ Réka tells me. ‘So when we decided to start our own business, it made sense to us to use our expertise and focus on ski and exotic tours for groups and individuals.’


‘When we started our company, we were located in a very prestigious part of Budapest. We rented a beautiful office in a brand new building with direct street office, so it was easy for our clients to find us and walk in.’

How An Open Mind Will Help Your Company Win‘Our business model was based on the client network we had acquired at our previous jobs and in the early 2000’s, the internet wasn’t widespread yet in Hungary. Online bookings for flights and accommodation were never heard of and since we were true specialists, business was booming. We widened our horizon by offering sightseeing tours, fly & drive packages and new destinations in the Mediterranean. In addition, we also arranged company incentives, which were very popular. Not only did we serve local firms; multinationals, too, found their way to us.’

Digital Nomads in Santorini

‘However, by the end of the decade, everything had changed. The crisis had hit the industry hard and demand for travelling had decreased. Individuals preferred to save their money over spending it on holidays and companies had to cut costs, often starting with their travel budgets. ‘

‘We still managed the same amount of customers, but the amount spend per client had significantly decreased. As we saw our revenues shrinking, we had to lower our expenses as well. We moved into a smaller office inside an office building, missing out on walk-by traffic. At the same time, my partner went on maternity leave and I was left alone with one employee.‘

‘Not only had the world’s economic situation a big impact on us; 12-13 years after our start, our industry had also completely changed due to the rise of the internet. By now, it was widely available and it was more and more common for individuals to book their holidays online. I knew something had to change.’

‘Thankfully, opportunities to adapt were made possible by positive changes in the Travel Agencies Regulations. It was now possible to close the physical office and instead set up a home office. At the beginning, my employee and I worked from my house, and later it was just me.’

‘The change seemed to be working out well for me. I became more flexible and I loved that I could manage my days as I saw fit. I could even do the house chores and other personal things during the day. Not only that, but it also meant I didn’t have to commute, I didn’t have to wake up early… With the rise of smart phones, I could manage all the work from anywhere. I often found myself making bookings on the tram or bank transfers while walking down a street.’

‘It seemed perfect at first, but after a while I started missing the personal connection with other people. I felt down, lost my creativity and my positive energy. I was in the same clothes when I was working as when I was relaxing. I didn’t hear any stories, anecdotes, and even missed some innocent gossiping. The only human interaction I had were the few phone calls with customers. I found that I had a great need for conversation, for being part of a community, and for having a fixed place to meet my clients.’

‘And then the Hungarian Forbes helped me.’

‘I read about 2 American guys who bought a huge factory building in the United States and converted them into shared offices. I had never heard about that concept before, but it sounded exactly like something I needed, so I wanted to give that a try here in Budapest.’

‘After a quick search I found to my surprise that there were already some coworking spaces in town. I checked a couple of websites and found some places I wanted to check out, with huge windows, lots of daylight and easy access for clients.’

Kaptár coworking space offered a trial week, so I decided to start there. It exceeded my expectations so much, that I never looked any further. It’s a great environment to work in, with my desired daylight, lots of wood and other natural materials and the perfect background music. But what’s more, is that I met a really great, open-minded community. The group is so diverse with such interesting people, who all work in different sectors. I love how it widens my scope towards other professions and to the world in general. I made new friends for life at this place!’

‘But what makes Kaptár really superior to other places for me, are the international programs. We organize community lunches, board game nights and various parties. To contribute to the group, I have even organized a ski trip for my ‘colleagues’ last March. It was such a memorable experience!’

‘After having the experience of working from home, Kaptár has made me realized even more how important it is to be part of something, to have human interaction with people who stimulate and encourage you. Even when you all work on something different, or maybe exactly because of that, it helps you with creativity, motivation, inspiration and so much more. It is simply invaluable.’


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