Just when you think you’ve seen every possible business and can’t imagine anything new, you come across a completely fresh take on an old business.
When that happens to me (quite a lot), I am reminded once again that entrepreneurs have unlimited potential for business.
Why? Because we entrepreneurs don’t have to invent completely new businesses that have never been heard of before. What some of the best entrepreneurs are good at is taking older established business models and reinterpreting them. They turn an established business category on its head. They make it more interesting, more exciting or just different enough to stand out.
A case in point is “Meet at the Apartment.” This past week I was in New York for some strategy sessions. One of those sessions was held in a unique meeting space called “Meet at the Apartment.”
Meet at the Apartment is a loft space in the artsy Soho district of New York. (OK, you New Yorkers may laugh at me calling Soho artsy. But remember, I’m from the Midwest. To me, it’s artsy.)
Meet at the Apartment is set up to look like an open apartment space. When holding a meeting in it, you feel comfortable and at ease. You feel like you’re in someone’s apartment. For instance, some of the group ate lunch around the kitchen table, here:
Not only are the surroundings interesting-looking, but they are outfitted with technology that you need for meetings, such as large flat screens. As a group, you can view websites (as we did) or ad layouts or design mock-ups … or anything visual.
The surroundings are so intriguing visually, that they get your creativity flowing. As a participant I felt relaxed. New ideas were jumping into my mind.
Compare that to the standard experience of holding a meeting in a sterile hotel conference room. After a few hours people can’t wait to get out. Here, you feel like you could stay and hang out.
Meet at the Apartment is owned by a husband and wife team of entrepreneurs: Sara and Marc Schiller. Marc also facilitated our session and did a nice job at it. And joined us for dinner later that night. (See if you can get a hotel manager to do that.) They are also on Twitter: @meetnyc.