Best Ways to Network in Coworking Spaces

As of 2019, there were over 5,000 coworking spaces across the United States. Now, as we  enter a post-pandemic society, that number will undoubtedly continue to grow. 

More people are working remotely or taking on freelance positions, but still want the ability to go into a specific physical setting or office space to work. 

Coworking spaces offer the best of both worlds. They can spark creativity and keep you motivated and productive while allowing flexibility and freedom. 

They can also be great spaces for connecting and networking with others. While there are certain etiquette rules to follow, there’s no reason you can’t meet the right people in your coworking space that can help to advance your career – and you might even end up meeting someone you’d like to work with or gain new clients or new opportunities. 

So, how can you effectively network in a coworking space? Let’s cover a few best practices.

Make the Most of Informal Events

One of the best ways to network with others in a coworking space is to do it when no one is actually working. People tend to be more open and willing to form a connection when they’re not tied down with deadlines or trying to keep their nose to the grindstone. 

Many coworking spaces host events, but if yours doesn’t, consider putting one together. Some popular ideas that are likely to bring people in include: 

  • Happy hours 
  • Holiday parties 
  • Icebreaker events 

Welcoming New People to the Space 

Use these informal opportunities to get to know the people working next to you. Even if you don’t talk business, learning basic information and getting more comfortable around each other will make it easier to approach them in a more formal and professional manner later.  

Brainstorm and Mind Map 

If you’re working in a coworking space with other entrepreneurs and freelancers, you’re essentially in a goldmine of creativity. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t get “stuck” from time to time. 

Whether you’re trying to grow your own business or you’re just in a creative funk, consider asking a few people to have a brainstorming session. You never know who else might be feeling creatively stifled, or who might benefit from some fresh ideas. By brainstorming, you can ask questions and build mentoring relationships with others in your industry.  

Mind mapping sessions are great for organizing your ideas and getting the input of others, so you can use those thoughts later. They can help to unleash creativity and benefit everyone involved while improving your professional relationships.   

Ask for Feedback 

There’s no denying working from a coworking space has plenty of benefits. Research has shown that these spaces help to:  

  • Boost creativity & productivity 
  • Increase collaboration opportunities 
  • Reduce business overhead costs 

They can also serve as places of instant feedback. That’s another great way to network and grow your business all at once. Ask someone in the space for their opinion on your work. Whether you’re showing them a business plan or a blog, getting honest feedback can help your business become more agile and aware while strengthening your professional relationship with someone in your industry. 

At the same time, don’t be afraid to offer honest feedback to others when asked, too. Even if you’re technically competing with someone, your goal should be to push each other forward, not drag each other down. 

As more people start to work remotely and explore the world of entrepreneurship, we’ll see coworking spaces continue to grow in popularity. Whether you’re already in a coworking space or you’re considering one, take advantage of the fact that they provide built-in networking opportunities. You never know who could be sitting next to you, and how they might change your professional life for the better. 

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