Published 3/18/2018 in The Maryland Daily Record
In October 2015, I wrote a column about the challenges I was having with finding new office space. It shocks me to realize that I wrote this article two and a half years ago. I never would have imagined at that time that it would take me over two more years to find our new office home. Thankfully, I write this article on March 13, 2018, the actual day of my ninth anniversary of founding &Wealth, happy to report that the Baltimore office of &Wealth has successfully moved into our new space.
It has been a learning experience that I could have never imagined. The best news is that we have moved to a spectacular office in the Fells Point neighborhood of Baltimore. The building where our new office is located is called Brown’s Wharf and it could not be better situated right on the harbor.
For some time, I tried to keep our office in Baltimore County. This was a big part of the time that was spent trying to find the perfect space while remaining somewhere in the Falls Road corridor. Partly for personal reasons so that I could be close to my son’s school during the day and partly for the convenience that a Baltimore County location has offered to people who prefer not to come downtown for meetings.
Ultimately, it occurred to me that the unique, really special office environment that I was seeking does not really exist in the same way in the county as it does in the city. Coupled with the fact that most every member of our team lives in the city, including me, I came to the conclusion that I could manage the commute to my son’s school and make my way right back into the city to work. This process has caused me to rethink the time I will spend in traffic coming back downtown each morning that I take my son to school. I have already started to consider the ways that I can be productive on this commute – one that I have thanked my lucky stars not to be a part of for all of the years that I have lived and worked in Baltimore.
My son keeps asking why I would chose to do this commute. I am confident in my reply that my time with him his worth the traffic that I will face. I believe this is true. I also believe that the decision to select Brown’s Wharf is one of the best business decisions that I could have made. These are some of the key reasons why:
- The ownership: Brown’s Wharf is a joint project between Continental Realty and Workshop Development, two organizations that are devoted to the revitalization of Fells Point. Their vision, combined with a top-notch team of experienced professionals, has created as smooth a process as I could have imagined. From start to finish – concept to completion — our team has been treated as first-class tenants all the way. We could not be more pleased.
- Our team: &Wealth is built on a team of people who strive every day to exceed our client’s expectations and deliver an out-of-this-world experience for our clients. We need to have a work space that sparks creativity and innovation. This new office environment achieves this on every level. The feeling in our office is now one of light and openness. It is really spectacular, and I invite anyone to stop in for a visit.
- Our clients: We are a nontraditional financial services firm built for a nontraditional set of clients. This location mirrors that of our clients who are seeking something different. While we recognize that not everyone will want to come to Fells Point, and we will maintain an office location in Towson to accommodate this, my hope is that this location will inspire people to give the city a chance. There is much to be gained from stepping out of the comfort zone of the county to see the beauty of the harbor and to feel the energy of the area.
- Me, the CEO: Ultimately, the decision rests with me. I felt that for too long my office surroundings have been less than ideal. Dating back to my years at a big investment firm where the atmosphere was old school mahogany to the economical choices I made as a new business owner, I decided on a space that made me feel alive. It was a feeling of inspiration in the space that led to this decision, and I couldn’t be more excited for all that is to come in the years ahead.
There are endless decisions to be made as a business owner, none as significant as the people you hire and the real estate that you attach to along the way. After a great deal of time, thought and care, I am thrilled to have made Brown’s Wharf our new office location.
—Dorie Fain, founder and CEO of &Wealth