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In Search of the Water Cooler

Mapping out the hottest hangouts for homebased entrepreneurs.

This story appears in the October 1998 issue of

The old-timers at the barbershop; the greasers at the diner; the teenagers at the mall--our society's subcultures have long been defined by the places they hang out. And while homebased business owners may have gained a reputation as the entrepreneurs who cry lone wolf, they are just as capable of "hanging out" as the next guy. In fact, the ever-present threat of isolation gives these entrepreneurs even more incentive to get out and about, to combine interaction with just plain action.

Consequently, homebased business owners today are often on the prowl for a home office away from the home office. They want something more casual than the structured networking meeting and more productive than the corporate water cooler--if not someplace where everybody knows their name, then at least a place where they can feed off the energy of other business owners and get a sense of community.

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