Coworking space for women fosters community

Published: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 By: Jennifer Sharpe Source: The Journal Record
a space where we can be professionals together, focus, and not have to worry about where we are working,” Smart said. “The Treasury was a perfect match for my business partner and I because we are two women that own our own company. We have always been very passionate about entrepreneurship in general, but especially female entrepreneurs and supporting each other, and that mentality of a rising tide raises all ships.”

As a graphic designer, Smart considers her profession to be very male-dominated. “It’s very uplifting to be around women who are working so hard to achieve their dreams, follow their passions and share their experiences. It’s nice to feel like you’re not alone.”

The Treasury’s events are centered around the community aspect of the Schmitts’ mission. Hannah Schmitt was involved in starting CreativeMornings OKC and volunteered as the 2018 host, putting on free monthly events throughout the city.

“There’s a need for people to meet each other, learn from different backgrounds and industries,” she said. “That is something that we really wanted to be intentional about in this space: Getting women, specifically, more opportunities to connect with each other.”

The Treasury’s most popular event to date has been Premium in Practice, a lunch-and-learn that meets for 1.5 hours one Thursday a month and consists of a panel of three women from different backgrounds talking about a common theme, the most recent being social media marketing.

“People who might never be our members because they work in an office still have an opportunity to connect with other women that they would not have if not for our events,” Hannah Schmitt said.

On Feb. 21, Smart and her partner are presenting “Branding Basics” at Premium In Practice.

The Treasury also hosted a summit for working moms in early January. For two days, 16 speakers and panelists engaged women on a variety of topics in large group and breakout sessions. Plans are underway to hold the event again next year, with the possibility of a smaller-scale version happening this summer.

“We are trying to develop more events that are really specific for our members,” Hannah Schmitt said.

A Mastermind Group of eight women making a monthlong commitment to meet two hours a week to discuss best practices just started, and a Galentine’s event is scheduled for Feb. 13.

The Treasury is also available for outside groups to rent. Corporate groups have hosted trainings, and inquiries have been made about renting the space for parties such as baby and bridal showers.

Future goals for The Treasury include increasing membership numbers and also providing membership scholarships donated by outside individuals or groups. Citing the high costs of startups as a limiting factor for many women looking to act on their ideas or dreams, Brian Schmitt said, “We want to partner with people or organizations who then pour into these individual women.”

Ultimately, the key element to The Treasury is community. “The diversity of thought that can be fostered here by having members with all different backgrounds can be huge because it brings a different way of thinking about the same issue,” he said.

“We will continue to just do what the community is saying that they want,” Hannah Schmitt said. “As people continue to bring us ideas, then we will continue to offer those things. You don’t have to be a woman to be able to see that this is serving this huge need in the community.”

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