They say, your network describes your net worth and no place brings this phrase to life like working from coworking spaces, where you get to interact with like-minded entrepreneurs.
Networking unlocks some of the most amazing opportunities that help to propel us in the right direction for our professional growth and success.
From introverts who find it challenging to put themselves out there in a bigger way, to those who are scared to meet new people either online or in person, to individuals who don’t yet grasp the power of personal branding, thousands of professionals are turning their backs on opportunities that could change the course of their careers simply because of their reluctance to network.
In fact, according to an online source, at least 70% of job openings aren’t even listed, and networking is the only way to get these opportunities.
Away from jobs networking allows you to meet clients and even investors in the most unlikely spaces. Just a simple conversation could unlock a mindblowing opportunity or even birth one of the greatest ideas.
It’s become very clear that your network—that is, your community of trusted and supportive colleagues, clients, partners, peers, former and current managers, and others who are happy to speak for you and your outstanding capabilities—are the exact people who will open doors for you and unlock thrilling new opportunities that you simply would not have access to without them.
One of the best places to connect and network with people is in coworking spaces. From events to casual meet-ups, break-out spots in the space to the space cafeteria, coworking spaces are built to encourage networking and collaboration.
Over the years, as a leading coworking space in Africa, we have watched as companies reap and benefit from the myriad advantages of working from shared spaces.
In line with this, we have put together five strategies that will help you land exciting new roles, meet sponsors and mentors, achieve higher accomplishments, and bring you new opportunities that will elevate and inspire you to do your best and greatest work from a coworking space.
These strategies will help you develop a stronger entrepreneurial mindset and approach to your career growth and journey as an entrepreneur which is a must-have today, whether you’re in a corporate role or in your own venture.
So here are the five strategies that can leverage networks in a coworking space to grow your business and unlock some of the greatest opportunities.
Coworking spaces are a hub for events, workshops, and networking opportunities.
Attend as many as possible to build relationships, learn new skills, and get exposed to different industries.
However, to caution, you need to sieve into the events and attend those that are relevant to your industry or niche, as this is the only way you can connect with the right people.
Talking of events Nairobi Garage hosts a number of these events that are open to the business ecosystem at large.
This week for instance we have two great events happening; Fireside Chats on China as a Consumer Market and our monthly event series, After Office Hours with Jack Hartpence.
These two events are perfect examples of networking sessions that will allow you to grow your business to the next level.
The staff at a coworking space can be a great resource for networking and learning about potential opportunities.
Take the time to introduce yourself and build relationships with them. During the onboarding sessions with community, managers ensure you state your intentions clearly, as in what you looking forward to achieving.
Actually, your community manager should be your closest friend, as they mostly know everyone in the space and might guide you to the right connection.
You can also take advantage of the different communication platforms to connect provided by the coworking spaces, i.e the member portals or even the slack channels to connect with other members.
Coworking spaces are filled with entrepreneurs and small business owners who are always looking for new talent and expertise.
Offer your skills and services to others in the space, and you may open doors to new opportunities.
This can be achieved by staying active on the different avenues provided by the space to connect. Through the provided channels you can share your expertise, website link, discounts, or even any news stories about your company.
ProTip: Ensure you do not bombard your community with the information though. Do it in moderation.
Many coworking spaces have online communities where members can connect and share resources. Join these communities to stay up to date on events, workshops, and potential opportunities.
Coworking spaces are designed to encourage collaboration and idea-sharing. Take advantage of this environment by collaborating with other members on projects, events, and other initiatives.
This can lead to new business opportunities and partnerships. You can achieve this by attending events tailor-made for your location or internal events.
For instance, at Nairobi Garage some such events include The Founders Breakfast, The Mind Melding sessions, and the Brown Bag sessions.
All these events allow members to collaborate with one another either by offering a platform where you can share an area of expertise or even fully sponsoring the session.
This ultimately gives you the much-needed visibility for your company to the community.