Alex Hillman
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Alex Hillman Podcasts Episode 3: On the Stack with Vanessa Gennarelli

Alex Hillman talked to Vanessa Gennarelli.  Vanessa works on learning communities as a researcher in the field while Alex Hillman is the co-founder of Indy Hall, a coworking space.  

Accreditation and Learning

Everyone is talking about how people are entering the workforce without the necessary skill sets.  Vanessa is from a high education background and discussed accreditation and what role it plays in getting and retaining jobs in today’s workforce.  However, Alex spoke about learning from his experiences with coworking.

Learning in coworking spaces work in two ways.  One of them is a more formal form of learning that occurs through workshops, classes, or show and tells.  However, the larger portion of learning in coworking spaces occurs through more casual interactions and socializing with peers.  


Alex needed a place where people were accustomed to collaboration which is where Indy Hall comes into play.  Unfortunately, resentment towards the notion of collaboration often occurs as a result of previous bad experiences with it.  This creates a “I will do it myself” kind of attitude. Collaboration in the workplace is really hard in a society where competition is emphasized.  It is important to try and move away from the negative impression that collaboration leaves.


Vanessa notes that having one overarching value-type goal is very important.  Achieving goals is not what makes us happy, rather, working towards a larger purpose is.  There is a difference between satisfaction happiness and manufactured happiness.

The sense of earning something and the associations of happiness around it can contribute of overall happiness.  Vanessa has been researching how to spend money to make ourselves happier. What she found was that people should spend money on experiences rather than tangible things.  However, turning tangible items into an experience upon seeing or using it can be beneficial as well. This means associating items with positive memories to bring happiness.


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