Gangplank: an idea, not a building

Tyler HurstBlog33 Comments

Communities require a sense of place. Communities require good people. Communities require a certain kind of attitude.

Combine that with businesses that have something to sell and you have something special.

Gangplank is the embodiment of everything above. It’s inclusive, it’s useful and it’s spreading. If you don’t get it, stop thinking of it as a building, think of it as a group of connected people and businesses looking to solve problems. You don’t have to go to Chandler to be a part of it, you just have to adopt the attitude.

Enough of the fragmentation. Enough of people trying to start their own thing. Enough of the bickering. Greatness doesn’t come from a small group of people opening a goddamn coffee shop or developing a non-profit in hopes it will spur innovation, it comes from motivated people who are open to criticism. Stop going out on your own. Work with us, not against us.

No one owns Gangplank. The best will rise to the top, the most connected will reap the rewards, those open to new ideas will benefit the most.

Help us not repeat the mistakes of years past.

Be great. Get on board.

Tyler HurstGangplank: an idea, not a building

33 Comments on “Gangplank: an idea, not a building”

  1. Anonymous

    I agree with most of what you’ve said here. I didn’t know of generation M as a concept, but after reading the article you linked, I’m pretty sure I belong, even if I’m still figuring out where I fit.

    I don’t remember if you got in town in time for the brown bag, but they talked about how the community is at a critical juncture of growth, and the way forward is gangplank the concept being the hub of a larger community. Which makes sense considering the geography of Phoenix.

    The sense of authentic community is one of the things that I like about what’s going on here in Phoenix. If Gangplank is an idea, opening a coffee shop for example should be an extension of the community.

  2. Ben

    I agree with most of what you’ve said here. I didn’t know of generation M as a concept, but after reading the article you linked, I’m pretty sure I belong, even if I’m still figuring out where I fit.

    I don’t remember if you got in town in time for the brown bag, but they talked about how the community is at a critical juncture of growth, and the way forward is gangplank the concept being the hub of a larger community. Which makes sense considering the geography of Phoenix.

    The sense of authentic community is one of the things that I like about what’s going on here in Phoenix. If Gangplank is an idea, opening a coffee shop for example should be an extension of the community.

  3. tdhurst

    Mike, did you even read the fucking post about it not being about the building? No shit Chandler isn't the center of the universe, I don't like driving out there either. It's an idea.

  4. Mike

    Typical kool-aid drinking gangplank egotistical rhetoric. The gangplank attitude is “we are better than everyone” which is what causes people to go out on their own. And that’s not just GP itself, it’s most people that “are” gangplank. GP is not an attitude, or a movement, it’s one thing: the actions of the people that are known to be associated with it.

    I hate to break it to you, but chandler isn’t the center of the universe. People go out on their own because chandler is not convenient for many people. It’s the typical GP attitude that makes you look at people going out on their own as bad and think the only true way to working together is to join GP. GP isn’t coworking, it’s a religion. At least it’s marketed as one. Every time someone opens their mouth about GP, I instantly think of certain religions that tell me “we are the only way”… instant turn off.

    In reality, GP should be fully supporting other efforts, asking “how can we help”., “how can we work together so that everyone is benefited”. THATS working together. Not “stop going out on your own and join us”. That’s again the “we are the best” GP attitude. You say it’s not a building, and you don’t have to go to chandler, so then what difference does it make if someone opens a coffee shop? How does that dilute the objective? You said yourself a community doesn’t have to gather in one building to be connected.

    GP isn’t the answer for everyone. As soon as the egos at GP understand that, the sooner people will put aside the differences between building types and locations and come together on the ground that GP and other places do share: communication, collaboration, and innovation. Only then can the community flourish..

  5. Mike

    Typical kool-aid drinking gangplank egotistical rhetoric. The gangplank attitude is “we are better than everyone” which is what causes people to go out on their own. And that’s not just GP itself, it’s most people that “are” gangplank. GP is not an attitude, or a movement, it’s one thing: the actions of the people that are known to be associated with it.

    I hate to break it to you, but chandler isn’t the center of the universe. People go out on their own because chandler is not convenient for many people. It’s the typical GP attitude that makes you look at people going out on their own as bad and think the only true way to working together is to join GP. GP isn’t coworking, it’s a religion. At least it’s marketed as one. Every time someone opens their mouth about GP, I instantly think of certain religions that tell me “we are the only way”… instant turn off.

    In reality, GP should be fully supporting other efforts, asking “how can we help”., “how can we work together so that everyone is benefited”. THATS working together. Not “stop going out on your own and join us”. That’s again the “we are the best” GP attitude. You say it’s not a building, and you don’t have to go to chandler, so then what difference does it make if someone opens a coffee shop? How does that dilute the objective? You said yourself a community doesn’t have to gather in one building to be connected.

    GP isn’t the answer for everyone. As soon as the egos at GP understand that, the sooner people will put aside the differences between building types and locations and come together on the ground that GP and other places do share: communication, collaboration, and innovation. Only then can the community flourish..

  6. tdhurst

    Mike, did you even read the fucking post about it not being about the building? No shit Chandler isn’t the center of the universe, I don’t like driving out there either. It’s an idea.

  7. tdhurst

    Mike, did you even read the fucking post about it not being about the building? No shit Chandler isn’t the center of the universe, I don’t like driving out there either. It’s an idea.

  8. WesleyTech

    Gangplank has extended to other locations. #GangplankNW is on Thursdays at Next Coffee shop (59th Ave & Utopia). I've been going there the past couple weeks and enjoying it.

    I've never been to Gangplank HQ, but I certainly enjoy interacting with the folks who do go there often. I'm also routinely impressed by all the tweets, blogs, podcasts, videos, etc that originate from Gangplank HQ and it's regulars. I'd like to make it out there some time, but I don't feel like I'm not part of the culture just because I haven't been to the HQ yet.

  9. tdhurst

    Gangplank might not be the answer long term, but it's the best and most cohesive thing we have going now.

  10. tdhurst

    What's central to people? Collab isn't central to me and most people do not live in central Phoenix, so ThriveCo doesn't work either.

    You don't have to go to Gangplank to be a part of the group. I'm just tired of people actively fighting it.

  11. Brian

    > 2. Support and let others attempt the same in a more central location (Thrive, Collab etc…).

    I agree. Geographically, Gangplank is extremely convenient for me. However, I think there are enough people in the metro area to support having more than a couple of these types of buildings and there's no reason not to have one/some in downtown. It sounds like this is in reference to Thrive (coffee shop + co-working space)
    > “a small group of people opening a goddamn coffee shop”

    It would be refreshing to see more support, instead of unnecessary bickering.

  12. Brian

    Mike,

    Sans the hyperbole, your sentiment toward Gangplank is not uncommon. Some people love GP and some people don't. That's going to happen. They chose how they would set out to make a difference and they did it. I think the impact on the local community has been a net positive.

    I'm a firm believer of positive action over negative words — if you don't like how they're doing it, then get off your ass and be the change you want to see in the world.

    Until then, all you are is a negative force in the community.

  13. tdhurst

    True, but do the founders of said coffee shop even doing anything more about this? All I hear is them trashing Gangplank for not being in downtown Phoenix.

  14. Brian

    Maybe I'm an idiot for putting myself in this kind of position, but I can't help but defend both sides on this..
    I'll always defend Gangplank from people who complain about its culture (like Mike above, or those who call it a “frat house”) or its location. No matter where it is, the location will suck. It's a Phoenix problem. If people in the downtown Phoenix area want something like Gangplank, it's on them to make it happen.
    That's where I would defend Thrive. While I see and hear some animosity coming from both sides, I think Thrive's goals are more for the greater good than spiting anyone. I personally don't care what their motivations are, because I will give them my support solely based on the effect I see them having — bringing people together.

  15. tdhurst

    And I'm glad that you recognize that both sides have valid points here. I'd pay money to be a part of Thrive if it was something that was actually happening. No doubt in my mind.

  16. pkenjora

    If Thrive happens in downtown I'm willing to move our offices to the same building or next door. Anyone else in for this idea?

    Goal is to extended GangPlank idea into downtown area where a tech center can grow. I think one of the problems with GangPlank is youre either in the building or several corn fields away. Would be nice to have several companies (startups) within walking distance of each other. Downtown provides this capability.

    So we take Thrive, glob startups in around it and officially call it “GangPlank Downtown”. Sounds good?

  17. pkenjora

    So how about the idea of using the GangPlank name for a north variant? How do we get this party started? Whose running the coffee shop one and how do we loop in? Any opposition to moving it out of the coffee shop and into a brick building with all the infrastructure?

  18. tdhurst

    We don't necessarily have to call everything GangPlank, you know. The name is really irrelevant when it comes to working together.

  19. jmchood

    No matter what — my hat is off to Derek and whoever-else-helps-fund-GangPlank.

    GP is a movement, but someone has to somehow, some way pay the bills or it doesn't get off the ground.

    I had a recent conversation with someone who is leaving their current field of employment (no, not a loan officer!) and they actually said “well, it was either start doing that or go down to GP every day”

    Which is only one sign of success.

    Long live GP.

    Justin

  20. pkenjora

    Right but if we call it something different people could get the idea that its competitive. I'd like to extend out the Gang Plank idea, the NW crew (Josh and Steve) are already doing this. I think our company could help anchor the north valley site to an office which would make it more collaborative.

  21. tdhurst

    I see your point, but the name is less important than just working with the people who are already there. You want to do pirates and ninjas, or Bloom and Depp, whatever.

    The key is to not duplicate efforts and foster growth for everyone.

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