Company Culture

Calling all Eastern Shore vacationers: hotDesks coworking is here for you

The chain of Eastern Shore coworking spaces has reciprocity agreements with a handful of Baltimore-area coworking spaces.

hotDesks offers three coworking spaces on Maryland's Eastern Shore. (Courtesy photo)
Work emails don’t stop the second you cross over the Bay Bridge on the way to an Ocean City vacation but the bandwidth to respond to them might.

“We still have an issue with connectivity on the Eastern Shore,” said Mike Thielke, the executive director of hotDesks. “Unless you use your data card or hotspot, you’re not going to get the bandwidth you need.”
To stay connected while you’re trying to be semi-unplugged at the beach, hotDesks has you covered. The string of coworking spaces from Easton to Salisbury is preparing for summer drop-ins who need to work while they play.

We try to translate what has typically been an urban mechanism to a rural environment.

Thielke wants more people to think of successful startups when they think Eastern Shore, and says hotDesks is key to building that mindset.
“We try to translate what has typically been an urban mechanism to a rural environment,” said Thielke of the three small, self-managed spaces. “We are trying to do multiple smaller locations because we have such a large coverage area.”
Thielke expects the 36-member community to balloon as summer hits its stride because of new reciprocity arrangements with coworking spaces and incubators on the Western side of the bay. Members of the Emerging Technology Centers in Baltimore, Chesapeake Innovation Center in Odenton, and the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship in Howard County can work at hotDesks for free. But members will need to talk to their home space before dropping in on a hotDesks location.
Mike Thielke, right, executive director of Eastern Shore Entrepreneurship Center (ESEC), will welcome Maryland Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown to officially open hotDesks, the Eastern Shore’s first coworking space in Salisbury.

Mike Thielke, right, heads up hotDesks. (Courtesy photo)

Each hotDesks space is self-managed and access is limited to keycard holders.
“The spaces are self-managed, they’re not staffed, and there’s not enough critical mass to justify it,” he said. “So you need to make arrangements ahead of time.”
If you’re not a part of an affiliated coworking space, day passes are $20 and can be arranged by contacting Thielke.
In addition to desk space and internet, hotDesks is hoping to add more events and educational opportunities to its calendar. Thielke is hoping the reciprocity agreement with other coworking spaces will extend beyond sharing members and involve sharing information and classes.
“We’d like to create an increased virtual connection with the western shore,” Thielke said. “And we’d like to increase interconnectivity between eastern and western shore entrepreneurs.”

Companies: Chesapeake Innovation Center / Emerging Technology Centers (ETC Baltimore)

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