Coworking spaces are awesome. Most smart entrepreneurs know it, and for all the right reasons. They provide you with great opportunities of learning, collaborating, innovating and networking that any other working platform can only dream of! This is why this working trend is on the rise.
However, you might be an entrepreneur who has never worked in a shared space, you may be someone who finds it difficult to concentrate among chatter from colleagues, or, you may be just about anybody who still needs to figure out how to make the best use of a coworking space. And like always, we are here to help!

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Here are 10 ways you can catapult the growth, workflow and efficiency of your business in a coworking space.

Choose Wisely

The type of crowd varies across different coworking spaces. You must hence, choose a coworking space with due consideration to aspects such as your goals and necessities. Take  trials at a lot of.

For instance, if you are a blogger, you would want to join a place that hosts a sizeable pool of coworkers who are either bloggers or at least are in some way, related to the said profession. Only then will you be able to reap the benefits of networking and learning from your coworking hub. Community building and networking are mostly the primary reasons that drive entrepreneurs to join coworking setups. If that’s not what you’re getting, you are practically just paying for a table and chair, rendering your investment futile.

Be open

As mentioned earlier, the value of a coworking setup lies in the potential it offers you in terms of community building, networking and collaborating. If you are the introvert kind, you may not derive as much value from it as you need and deserve to.

Thriving in a coworking space will be hard if all you do is go there, put on your headphones and go about your work. To network with people, you need to talk to them. And for a talk to take place, you need to come across as approachable in the first place! Exchange greetings, smile at coworkers randomly, and initiate small talk whenever you think you have some time to. You never know, you might just get that big deal you always wanted from a coworker sitting next to you!

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Tweak Your Schedule

While coworking offers great benefits for networking and learning, it may not be the best place to do the kind of work that requires huge bouts of concentration. For Instance, a blogger might benefit from exchanging blog ideas with fellow coworkers to make better blogs, but the same may not work for an accountant, who is supposed to do a lot of manual work that Co-working spaces have many benefits, but one of the drawbacks is that they can be difficult spaces to actually get work done, especially if you’re used to the solitude of a home office. But that doesn’t mean you should give up co-working altogether, just plan the type of work you do in the space to fit your level of productivity.

My aunt has been using co-working for the last two years. Recently she assessed her productivity on her co-working days and discovered that she’s woefully unproductive in the co-working space. So now she schedules non-critical work, client meetings, networking, and admin duties for her co-working days.

Customize your bag

There’s nothing worse than braving traffic to arrive at your co-working space, only to discover you’ve forgotten something vital. It makes you wonder why you leave the house at all.

One way to combat this is to dedicate a backpack or tote bag specifically for your co-working equipment. Inside, place everything you need: A drink bottle, swipe card, chargers and batteries, change for the vending machine, coffee discount card …  

When you head out for co-working, you just need to grab the bag and go.

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Keep Changing Them Seats!

We humans are creatures of habit, but co-working is all about changing up your routines. So start by changing up your seat! Switch to different workstations around the space, strike up conversations with new people, and see where serendipity leads you.

Leverage The Events

You’re paying for the space, so make use of all the features and programs on offer. Many co-working spaces offer free seminars and networking events, great coffee, or unlimited photocopying. Go crazy with these perks. You’ve earned them.

Share Your Pie

If you’re a little bit introverted, you might find walking into a co-working space a bit intimidating, with all that chatter and clatter between workers. You might struggle to insert yourself into the established networks of a particular space.

One of the things I like to do if I’m going into a space like this is to show up with some home-baked goodies. You’ll gather a crowd (because what entrepreneur can say no to free food?), have an instant conversation topic, and you’ll always be remembered as the “cupcake girl” or the “dude who makes a mean quiche lorraine.”

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Stay Secure!

One thing that’s not often discussed when thinking about co-working is the vulnerabilities it might open up in your business. The truth is, while we may think we can trust our fellow co-workers to be honest, there are unscrupulous people in the world, and one wrong move could cost your company dearly.

Unlike an office space where everyone is usually working for the same team, a co-working space brings together many different types of businesses – some who might even be competitors. Practice good security practices by shutting your computer off when you’re away from your desk, using smart passwords, and making sure you know who is in the building at any time. Talk to the co-working facilitators about their own internet security precautions, as well as general safety and security around the building.

As well as the security of your data, there’s the security of your person to think of as well. Entrepreneurs may use the space any time of the day or night, so if you regularly pull all-nighters, choose a space that’s in a well-lit, safe neighbourhood. If you can get secure parking, that’s a bonus. Look for spaces that take security seriously, with swipe-card access and strict rules on visitors.

Bring Promotional Material Along

Usually the businesses participating in a co-working space are allowed to bring along promotional material (although there may be some rules around this – check with the facilitators). If you want your fellow workers to notice you, then supply some promo gear that’s useful in the space, such as pens, pads, notebooks, magnets, drink bottles or coffee cups.

Keep it Clean!

This should go without saying, but it often needs to be said, loudly and with feeling. If you’re going to be part of a co-working space, you need to be respectful of the other people who use the space. That means using an indoor voice, keeping distractions to a minimum while others are trying to work, and keeping both communal areas and your own workspace tidy.

Remember that your co-working buddies could be your next business partners, investors, collaborators, or cheerleaders, so be on your best behaviour, toss away your rubbish, and keep that smile turned on!

We hope this post gave you much clarity on how you can successfully work in a coworking space. We also have a good news for you. We host our own coworking space that you can check out any time you like for a trial. So get ready to reap the benefits of learning, collaborating and networking that no other kind of workspace offers!

Keep Hustling!

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