One thing that is important to keep in mind is that coworking isn’t about how other members of the community can help you and your business. It is about how you and other members can support one another and help grow each other’s businesses.
Because of the flexibility of the coworking community, it is attractive to entrepreneurs. The number of people working in coworking spaces globally is on a path to reach 3.8million users in 2020. These numbers will only keep going up as coworking spaces not only provide entrepreneurs with a base of operations but also provides them with resources to help them scale their businesses and a lifetime’s worth of connections.
These are 4 things to avoid doing in a coworking space so as to completely maximize and get the best out of any given community.
- Becoming a member solely for networking
One of the things that makes coworking so attractive to entrepreneurs is the potential for networking. There is a lot of potential for connections that are meaningful. Because coworking is more about helping one another than helping one’s self, while there will be opportunities for collaboration and there will be valuable contacts that fellow members can help you make, developing meaningful connections takes time. So, don’t go around just handing business cards to everyone in the community at any given opportunity. Take your time to build meaningful relationships. Make it about the long term and not just about how they can patronise or give you something you currently need.
- Avoid Spamming other members of the community
A lot of coworking spaces take it upon themselves to make sure that their members get good opportunities to network with each other. It could be putting up a members director on walls or having a business car pool available or hosting events where members can meet other professionals in and outside of the community. These are the right platforms for you, as a member of the community to pitch, sell yourself etc.
That you have access to a person’s email doesn’t mean it’s okay to spam them with your ads, marketing emails and the likes. It is not a good look and doesn’t go well with what coworking is really about. .
- Don’t fall off the bandwagon
Much like a gym membership, if you sign up and don’t attend at all, there won’t be any results. Take advantage of resources available to the community. Attend events organised, ask around to see how you can be more involved in the community. The community is available to impact you and your business, you just have to be intentional about tapping into the resources available to you.
Also when you do get a contact or new client or customer from within the community, do not mess it up. Make sure to give the best service that you can offer as that builds your reputation within the community and the more other members can trust that you will deliver, the more they are inclined to push more connections your way.
Be an active member of the community.
- Struggling in silence
A lot of entrepreneurs want to have it all figured out before reaching out to other members of the community and by doing so, you miss out on the very essence of what coworking is. According to a 2016 survey by Small Business Labs, coworking spaces help people feel less lonely and 89% of people in this survey say they felt a lot happier after joining a coworking community.
One of the key benefits of a coworking community is the help, insight and wisdom that you can get from people in and out of your field that could be the next boost you need to scale your business. Once you have made a choice to join one, leverage all the resources at your disposal for support, encouragement, troubleshooting, brainstorming and feedback. You’ll be better for it.
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