Coworking is making its mark on the workforce, with an explosion that resulted in more than 1.2 million U.S. coworkers by the end of last year. That’s pretty impressive, considering there were fewer than 100,000 just a decade ago.
Seasoned coworkers have discovered some tips and tricks that boost coworking productivity year-round. Let’s look at 5 smart ways to get the most out of the experience.
1- Join the Vibrant Coworking Community
Coworking environments are bursting with smart, talented people: entrepreneurs, designers, artists, programmers, CEOs, and business experts of all types. Seize the opportunity to become a part of the broader coworking community that exists beyond your immediate workspace.
Explore upcoming events hosted by the coworking space and its members. Join a new group, or if you can’t find one you like, create one. After all, coworking is about breaking down barriers and finding new ways to work and socialize.
2- Offer Free or Discounted Services
Don’t be afraid to offer up your expertise around the coworking community. Post a flyer, join an online discussion forum, or just chat with others about what you can offer.
Many coworking members will welcome discounts and freebies with open arms – as long as you’re looking to provide something of value to them. It can be a great way to market yourself and develop new relationships.
For example, if you’re an artist who dreams of selling more large-scale pieces, partner up with a coworking business guru who has contacts with local offices. Trade your design services for leads, and it’s mutually beneficial.
3- Start a Fresh Work Routine
Here’s another tried-and-true tip from coworking experts: Use your coworking membership as an excuse to set a productive new routine. This can be a great way to shake up the doldrums or reach a goal that’s been beyond your grasp.
If you struggle to get moving in the morning, promise yourself a free coffee at the coworking coffee station if you arrive by 8 a.m. Or if you really need to do more networking, set a reminder on your phone to get out and socialize in the coworking lounge every Tuesday and Thursday at 4 p.m. These fresh routines can provide renewed excitement and motivation, no matter what business you’re in.
4- Invite Your Clients to the Space
Have you invited a new client to the coworking space? People are curious about coworking and would probably snap up an invitation to peek inside the space.
Arrange to meet a client one-on-one in your workspace, or reserve a room and invite all your biggest clients to stop by for free coffee and doughnuts one morning. It’s almost like having a mini-open house, where you can chat with customers in an upbeat, professional setting.
5- Switch Up Your Location Frequently
In a rut? If you’re starting to feel like you’re sitting in a cubicle all over again, it’s probably because you’re not taking the opportunity to switch things up around the coworking environment.
If you’re using a dedicated desk on the west side of the building, ask for a space on the east side when you renew your membership. A simple change in sunlight can be amazingly refreshing. Or if your coworking community has other nearby locations, switch it up for a while and work out of a nearby town.
In fact, sometimes all it takes is a seat on the couch in the communal space. Research shows that just working near other people – even when you don’t speak to them – has an inspirational effect called “positive spillover.”
The Bottom Line: Stay Flexible
Coworking environments are designed to enhance your life and lend flexibility, so make sure you’re taking advantage of all the benefits. To learn more about how coworking could reshape your work life, connect with Victory Workspace.