Building a Coworking Community
A coworking space is not all about working. Don’t get me wrong – that’s obviously the basic reason we’re all coming together – but aside from the obvious advantages (networking, cost effectiveness, flexibility, convenience and supporting your professional image), most coworking space members report remarkable results, and it’s not from what you’d think.
Strength in numbers: A coworking community
In a global survey of coworking participants, 96% of members rated community as the number one thing they look for in a coworking space. When pressed for substantiation, the same respondents said that it was the people that made the coworking space worthwhile – not the location or the price.
It’s a fact that your level of satisfaction and sense of comfort is directly affected by your surroundings, your immediate community and your ability to be productive. With this in mind, it falls to the coworking space itself to provide an atmosphere that is conducive to these things. Having the choice of whether to work independently in a private office or in a more communal environment is key, but special attention should be paid to those coworking community spaces to ensure that they are encouraging interaction.
However, putting people in a room and making them look at each other doesn’t just instantly make it a coworking community. And making the introductions doesn’t immediately translate to a meaningful connection – which, within the coworking space means professional collaboration, sharing of ideas and mutual support.
Coworking space staff makes all the difference
One of the biggest catalysts to making a successful coworking community is the staff itself. Having a predictable constant within the coworking space, one that knows everybody’s name, and one who can potentially connect the dots when the need arises, this goes a long way to building community within the space itself.
Fostering the ability to share experiences works a lot of magic as well. Let’s face it, sitting at the same desk or working next to somebody all day doesn’t always lead to incredible breakthroughs. However, a well-organized program of events go a long way to encouraging discussion, which in turn will lead to pitching projects, tossing ideas around the room and potentially some fruitful connections. That translates to an engaged coworking community!
An active coworking community stimulates meaningful connections
While these experiences aren’t exactly predictable or guaranteed to produce results, the direct involvement of the coworking space staff and their dedication to connecting, supporting and inspiring their members can mean the difference between just showing up at the office and having the best day ever. Your hosts are networking facilitators and connection stimulators, actively helping members build bridges within the network.
Most of all though, coworking space staff set the stage, provide the atmosphere and the hospitality that keeps people coming back. Regularly scheduled community lunches where everybody contributes something, after work wine tastings and media-sharing events are something to rally around, find out what your fellow coworkers are into and up to, and potentially find a kindred spirit that makes coming to work that much more pleasurable.
Ultimately, coworking spaces have one thing in common: the people they attract are all hard working, motivated and driven to succeed. This trait, above all others, sets coworkers apart from just about everybody else in the working world and is the necessary ingredient for a successful coworking community.
Liberty Office Suites: a coworking community in NJ
If you are an entrepreneur, solopreneur, freelancer or self-employed contractor who is looking for an alternative to your basement, bedroom, coffee shop or leased office space, consider a coworking environment. Coworking spaces provide state-of-the-art professional office facilities in a community environment that encourages connections at every level of business. Call today to find out more; Liberty Office Suites offers several coworking subscription packages that will make your bottom line look great and provide that extra layer of motivation you need to take your efforts to the next level. Join our community today!