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A shared space in downtown Burbank offers options for professionals who work remotely

For Burbank resident Mike Head, working from home was too much of a distraction for him.

Head, a software engineer, was bothered by his cat, his two sons entering and leaving the house and other household chores that he felt he needed to do.

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"Whatever it is, all that stuff prevents me from actually working straight through for hours on end," he said.

So, in late June, Head decided to become a member of My Other Office, a shared office space in downtown Burbank on Olive Avenue near First Street, so he can focus on finishing projects for his clients.

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My Other Office opened its doors in January 2015, providing the community with three floors of office space.

The first floor, known as the co-working flex floor, has shared tables for people to work at and various business equipment, such as printers, copiers and fax machines. There is also a sound-proof booth people can use to make phone calls and a room for video conferencing.

The second and third floors include office suites that companies or start-ups can use by the hour or lease out as well as conference rooms to hold meetings.

Ingrid Rushing, founder and chief executive of My Other Office, said that she wants to make her business more than just a place for people to plop down, plug in their laptop and use Wi-Fi.

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"I want it to have its own culture," she said. "I want to see what that culture turns into over the coming years, because it could be a start-up hub for some bigger ideas."

Rushing, who also uses the shared office to run her other businesses, said she likes the collaborative environment on the their flex floor and encourages her members, regardless of their business field, to converse with one another and possibly come up with ideas for other business projects.

Head said networking with others and collaborating on the flex floor was another feature that he was looking for in a shared office space.

"I could find new opportunities here, different consulting jobs or even bounce ideas off somebody else," he said. "That's important to me."

Nancy Dabu, an event producer who is best known for organizing the LA Cookie Con and Sweets Show, has been using My Other Office for about three months after the office space she was leasing expired.

She tried working from home and at coffee shops, but Dabu said that she was not as productive as she could be when working in an office setting.

"I was also craving some human interaction beyond the few hours a week I spend with my interns and assistants," she said. "We also needed a more professional space to work out of, so that's how we landed here. It's been by far the best decision I've made this year."

Dabu said the price of leasing an office suite and being a member at My Other Office is comparable to the other space she rented. She added that she would consider moving into one of the suites in the building once one becomes available.

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"My Other Office is fueled by the passion and the dedication of its staff, especially Ingrid," Dabu said. "This is one the best communities I've been a part of in a long time."

On Aug. 8, My Other Office will be hosting a celebration for its first year as a corporation.

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