Networking 101: Making The Most Of Coworking Community Events

a photograph of professionals getting acquainted to illustrate networking at coworking community events

A coworking space is more than just a flexible workspace where customers can get their projects done. Beyond that, the best coworking providers ensure that they have a strong community of members ready to support one another. This is the reason why coworking community events are regularly held in these establishments.

Case in point, professionals love attending coworker networking events because it helps them make meaningful connections. Whether you’re a startup owner or a freelancer, you’ll get the chance to meet other professionals from inside and outside your industry. You may not be expecting it, but a fellow attendee could be a potential mentor or investor for your startup. Or you just might finally meet that web developer who can help improve your business site.

Whatever your profession, you can’t afford to live in a bubble. You need to go out and expand your network if you want to advance your career.

As public speaker and entrepreneur Porter Gale once said:

“Your network is your net worth.”

In this article, we’ll share some tips about how you can make the most of coworker networking opportunities during coworking community events.

1. Have goals and desired outcomes

First and foremost, you want to have clear purpose and expectations in mind.

To benefit the most from networking events, Forbes encourages goal-setting regarding the following aspects:

  • how many people you want to meet
  • how many appointments you want to set
  • how many business cards you want to collect
  • and/or who you want to reconnect with

Simply put, “knowing what you want to achieve” will help you succeed, the website likewise pointed out.

2. Be ready to introduce yourself and give your elevator pitch

According to author and serial entrepreneur Christine Comaford-Lynch:

“Networking is marketing. Marketing yourself, your uniqueness, what you stand for.”

When you meet professionals from different industries, you want to be prepared to share who you are and what you do. It’s vital to make a positive first impression. So it’s best if you have an effective elevator pitch, which is a “sales pitch that is typically 30 seconds long.” When done right, this can really help you open doors.

Be confident and friendly. Give a firm handshake. Maintain eye contact. And, oh, don’t forget to bring a lot of business cards to hand out to those you meet! 

3. Go after quality instead of quantity

Focus on spending quality time with a fewer number of attendees instead of trying to meet everyone during coworking community events. While you’re at it, make sure to ask interesting questions. You’d be surprised at the things you can learn and the connections you can make if you genuinely listen to what others have to say. 

In an Entrepreneur article, we read:

“More often than not, it's the short, casual, one-on-one conversations that turn into potential business opportunities.”

Needless to say, doing this can yield better results than when you do all of the talking.

4. Take note of memorable conversations

The ancient Chinese proverb says it best: “The dullest pencil is better than the sharpest memory.”

You definitely wouldn’t want to forget the names of people you’ve had meaningful conversations with during coworking community events. So take time to write down important details in your pocket notebook - or smartphone.

“A few quick sentences about who the person is and what you talked about” can be more than enough, according to HubSpot. “That way, when you go to follow up, you'll have all the information you need right at your fingertips.”

a close-up photograph of someone sending a text to illustrate following-up after a coworking networking event
Image source

5. Get in touch soon after the event

No, the networking process doesn’t end once the event is over. Since you already have the contact details of important people, make an effort to connect with them as soon as possible.

Send a quick text message thanking them for their time and expressing your desire to collaborate with them. Confirm any appointments made and provide any information you’ve promised to send. Of course, you can also add them on social media and message them there. Follow their pages, too, for more updates about their business and to demonstrate a genuine interest.

In any case, you want to strengthen the new bond that has been made. Coworking space socializing will be so much easier and more natural the next time you see each other there.  

Final thoughts

As you can probably tell by now, attending community events can be well worth your time. Coworking collaboration opportunities are limitless when you play your cards right. You’ll be able to build a stronger network and give your business a much-needed boost.  

Whether you’re a newbie or you’ve been in your industry for a long time, you’ll benefit from coworking community events that allow you to connect with fellow professionals.  

In the words of Virgin Group founder Richard Branson:

“Having a good network can be invaluable. It opens doors for you and allows you to enter into opportunities that are beneficial to your business.”

Featured Image: Photo by fauxels

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