How do you create your future community?
Coworking spaces are content, knowledge and networking generators thanks to events. Events also could be part of your income if you rent the space to external companies. Mainly, they are a great tool to create and stimulate your coworking community. From our experience developing coworking spaces, we differentiate 3 phases for creating a vibrant community:
1. Recruitment phase
You can start before having the facility. A bar is a good place to do so. Organise regular events about interesting projects or topics in order to attract your future customers or coworkers, take the opportunity to explain to them your project and ask what they need and if they might be interested in joining your space. Get their emails to start your database. Those events will give you key information before launching your coworking space.
utopic_US Barcelona: Rufianes con Talento
Networking session and pitches project for entrepreneurs.
You have just opened the space and don’t have any coworking members yet. A good way to find them by collaborating with external communities. Also, you can organise interesting workshops, talks, networking or art events to attract people. Those events will help you make your space known and bring in new people at the same time. This is a valuable marketing low-cost tool.
Transforma Bcn: WeArt Festival Bcn 2014
This was an annual art festival that hosted 1000 people in 1 day.
Transforma Bcn presentation at Fábrica Moritz
The event was designed for the cultural and creative industry and it was aimed to present a new coworking space. We organised 6 simultaneous workshops about dance, photography, illustration, collaborative networks, developing an application and economic knowledge. The event was attended by 150 people.
2. Development phase
Take good care of your first coworkers. The first members are the most important, they will bring you more people. Make them feel that the coworking space is also their home, even allow them to participate in the space creation process. Organise breakfasts or lunches to facilitate them knowing each other better. You also can organise networking events, workshops of their interests, speed meetings and presentations of their projects. Moreover, more specifically, let them propose and organise the activities of your coworking space.
3. Consolidation phase
A consolidated community is when the members propose and organize your coworking space content and activities. If you achieve this, it means that you have succeeded on creating your community.
Betahaus Bcn: Making of FromTo
This is a hackathon organised by the Betahaus community aiming to develop an app in 36 hours. The result was From To: The guide from Betahaus members to Barcelona.
Don’t forget, that stimulating your community will do the same for your coworking space.
This article has been written by Vanessa Sans of HWL and posted later on her Linkedin.
Featured image provided by Ouishare Spain.