By Nicole Lim (Brand Advocate, Turnstone)
Editor’s note: Thanks to turnstone for being a sponsor of the 2012 Women 2.0 PITCH Conference.

When I was a 16, I noticed an interesting phenomenon.

My bedroom had a massive desk in the middle of the it, facing the bed, and the back of my desk chair was facing my closet. These were the days when your desktop was so big you would be lucky there was any space left to put a mug or a pen cup. I had this terrible fluorescent work lamp over the desk that resembled a white alien with a very big rectangular head and a long extending neck, with light that brought out every flaw in my pubescent skin.

I noticed that I never worked at my desk, my chair quickly became a depository for my clothes, and the alien lamp was never turned on. Suffice it to say, I didn’t do my homework there much. In fact, I didn’t use that space that was my own bedroom much all together.

One day, I dragged in a warm blue lazyboy, the overstuffed kind with the leg rest that shoots out when you pull the lever, that I scored from a neighbor’s garage sale, and everything changed. I repositioned the desk so it faced the wall, put my new (old) comfy chair right up against the side of it, and 86’ed the alien light, for a ceramic lamp with a pale green shade and a nice 60 watt glow that warmed up the room and invited me to sit in my new chair, and read the book I had needed to finish 2 weeks ago. All of a sudden, homework was getting done, I started using my desktop computer, I even invited classmates to come work on our projects together out of my room, where I held court from my comfy chair. In other words, I made that space my own, and I became productive in it.

15 years later, I find myself working for a company that believes that space matters.

“Steelcase has been unlocking the promise of people at work for over 100 years. And they are great at it. Their sweet spot has been the big boys, the global leaders. turnstone was created to look out for the entrepreneur, the small business with big ideas. Everyone deserves a great place to work and an easy way to get it,” said Kevin Kuske, General Manager at turnstone.

We believe that space can inspire people to do great things (like finally catching up on that dry textbook reading.) It can help them engage and collaborate in a way that leads to the kind of innovation that fuels a small business. Great spaces are part of great companies. This is what inspires me, so every day I strive to help make it simple for small businesses to create spaces that reflect their individuality and spirit.

We are lucky to be in a day where many of these awesome new ideas and new businesses are coming from women entrepreneurs and we want to see that growth accelerate and continue. I, as a woman and an advocate of successful small businesses, am proud to be of support. Running a business is hard enough — having a great space to work in should be easy.

Editor’s note: Got a question for our guest blogger? Leave a message in the comments below.
About the guest blogger: Nicole Lim is the Bay Area brand advocate for turnstone, a Steelcase company, that designs workplace solutions for small business. turnstone is proud to work with Women 2.0 to act as a resource for entrepreneurs and support for the network. Nicole comes from an architecture background, with experience in business development for architecture, construction and the interior design industries. Follow her on Twitter at @sharewithnicole.