Meet The Community Builder: Smaranda Balut of Rubik Hub
Community Builder Smaranda Balut wants members to think of Rubik Hub as an open-minded and inclusive community of people who share one important value: #GiveBeforeYouGet. Founded in 2017, Rubik Hub quickly evolved from being merely a coworking space into a organization that focuses on educational programming for startups. If you’re looking for your next coworking adventure and to become part of a thriving community, Rubik Hub is the place for you. Here’s why.
How did you discover coworking?
It would be hard to point out exactly how I discovered the concept of coworking. It was probably during my travels abroad. In Romania, it’s a rather new concept that is slowly gaining traction in the big cities and in some smaller ones, too! I consider it to be a normal step forward, as there is an increasing tendency to join a great community or to rediscover the benefits of collaboration. And a coworking space offers both aspects!
How did Rubik Hub get started and when did it open?
It all started in 2015, when the guilty-as-charged and today’s CEO of Rubik Hub, Vlad Gliga, accepted a position in the Regional Development Agency of northeast Romania. He had a personal mission, derived from a strong feeling of homesickness that he experienced during his years abroad. He was impacted by what he felt while living in the U.S. and Denmark, and he knew he could be part of spearheading improvement back home in Piatra Neamt, Romania.
Rubik Hub was officially founded on May 27, 2017. We started as a coworking space, but we soon evolved into an organization that focuses on creating educational programs for startups.
How would you describe the community at Rubik Hub?
Today, Rubik Hub is an open-minded and inclusive community of people who share one important value: #GiveBeforeYouGet.
The members of the community come from different backgrounds, experiences, and have diverse expectations. We have students who consider entrepreneurship as a career opportunity; we have freelancers and digital nomads who appreciate the coworking space; we have mentors, business angels, university teachers, founders, and professionals! We are doers, believers, dreamers, overachievers, and we know the power of the community. We are in this together!
Do you host any sort of events to bring the community together?
Rubik Hub became one of the main ecosystem builders in the NE region of Romania. Over the past two years, our efforts have been focused on building up and consolidating the entrepreneurial ecosystem here, being the first startup hub in the region.
We are constantly talking about the emerging ecosystem for businesses in their early stages, where there is a huge need of involvement in designing and implementing educational programs for entrepreneurs. Thus, we developed strong partnerships with the area’s technical and non-technical universities, building complementary startup programs for students. We organize boot camps, hackathons, makeathons, pitching sessions, incubation, and pre-acceleration programs.
What are the three key ingredients for operating a successful coworking space?
I would say:
- Creating a proper atmosphere (music, events, programs, design, coffee!)
- Bringing in positive people
- Our secret ingredient: light! Lots of natural light!
What is your favorite part of coworking?
I love to mix and mingle with the people in the hub! Every day is a great opportunity to socialize and discover new people, personalities, experiences, and stories.
What types of cool projects are your members currently working on?
As mentioned, we are involved in several educational programs for startups — some organized by us, others by our community partners. Among these, I would mention the Coworking Retreat that is going to take place between August 12-18, 2019 and Startup Spinner Makeathon, a great opportunity for startups to showcase their potential in front of investors and accelerators.
Do you have any advice or tips for someone who is looking to open a coworking space?
Yes. Create a team that’s aligned with the same values and principles, bring optimism inside, and don’t ignore the needs and expectations of the community.
How would you like people to remember Rubik Hub?
As an organization that connects and develops communities, together with whom we inspire, educate, and accelerate startups from 0-1!
For more information about Rubik Hub, visit their website here.