Tatiana Ghigonetto: Leading SportWorks to greater heights

Our co-founder and executive director, Tatiana Ghigonetto was interviewed by Ladies Club Lausanne, one of our partners. This is a transcript of the interview:

The pandemic and its related restrictions have affected many businesses – some have been forced to adapt to a new reality and some, unfortunately, have collapsed.On the first Friday of February, we [Ladies Club Lausanne] broadcasted the LCL Monthly Meetup from SportWorks, a Strategic Partner, and checked how they were handling the challenge. We spoke with Tatiana Ghigonetto, one of the founders and Community Director at SportWorks.

*Jurgita Domeikaite: Is SportWorks a big company? How many employees do you have in the office?

Tatiana: We are a rather small team – eight people, plus some external collaborators. However, we are connected to the global sports community, and many sport professionals in this community contribute to our activities as guest hosts, speakers, partners or even volunteers. So, there is the sense that our team is much bigger.

JD: You are a Brazilian, so how was the idea of the co-working space in Switzerland born?

TG: I’m an architect by profession and I was involved in the creation of dedicated spaces for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, and was excited to continue my work in Lausanne. Almost three years ago the SportWorks co-working space for sport specialists, professionals and fans was born. With time, we expanded the idea and realised that we had become a business that connects sport professionals and the sports community itself. Now, the co-working space is one of multiple connectivity solutions we have, along with webinars, podcasts, events and more.

JD: What makes SportsWorks unique?

TG: We are at the heart of sport – the Olympic Capital. We are next door to the International Olympic Committee itself. So when we offer a dedicated office space for sport specialists from all over the world and Switzerland, for one day or one year, what we actually offer is the possibility of connecting with many of the most relevant organisations and leaders in sport. The same happens with our other types of membership that don’t require co-working use: since we are partners and friends with some of the best people in the sports industry, we are able to gather inspiring people in live and online events, webinars etc.

JD: You do a lot of different things, but mainly you’re an office space provider. How do you overcome the challenges of the work from home recommendations?

TG: I would say that I am a facilitator of good connections, and providing office space is one of the strategies I have for doing that. When it comes to our offices, we are open even in these difficult times due to the nature of our services that don’t fall under the requirements of home working, plus we are following all the safety requirements. When we add this to the online events, webinars and activities we are holding every week, we can say that we are able to maintain a space where the community can remain connected in a safe way. And this is good not only business-wise, but also (and probably most importantly) human-wise. We are social beings, and at the core of these encounters, we are offering the opportunity to reflect on important issues for the sports industry, such as business development, governance, technology, and also arts, gender equality and sustainability. For now, our community meets in a reduced capacity in our coworking space, but they are constantly engaging in our online activities and through our pages on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. We also have a weekly newsletter that we share with our community.

JD: It looks like the mission of SportWorks is quite clear, it’s impressive!

TG: Thank you! Indeed, the mission of SportWorks is to connect people of sport in a community where they can develop their knowledge in a variety of themes, from career development to social development to modern technologies. All of that benefits the sports industry and society as a whole. This final goal, of creating a better world, is what justifies it all.

JD: Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

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