Coworking spaces have become a fact of our professional lives ever since remote working became so much more popular. However, there are many people who have tried settling in the nearest coworking space to their homes and haven’t found it the thriving environment it has promised to be. But one must know that entering and spending time in any new space entails adapting to the new environment and following some tips to do your best. Therefore, in the following paragraphs, we are going to review some crucial tips to not only survive but also thrive in coworking environments.
Tips for thriving in a coworking space
1. Headphones are your best friends
Are you used to working in absolute silence? Do you listen to music while working? Do you need to watch videos and listen to voice messages constantly? In all of these cases, the answer is the same: get some good headphones.
Headphones can help you keep the surrounding voices at bay, but they also help you keep the coworking environment quiet and pleasant for everybody else. What’s more, you cannot constantly have headphones over your ears. So you will need to take regular breaks and interact with the people around you.
Another critical point about headphones is that if someone around has their headphones on, it most probably means that they do not want to be disturbed or interrupted. So, you would do better to wait for them to take their headphones off. This can also strike up a conversation and a friendship that can make your work more enjoyable.
2. Play nice
Being nice pays off in almost any environment. But this is especially the case in coworking spaces where you need to spend long stretches of time in the proximity of people you hardly know. You can start by smiling and saying thank you to the staff at the coworking facility.
Sometimes, in order to start off on the right foot with everybody, you can buy doughnuts and take them with you to the coworking space. You can also buy coffee for your neighbor just to start a conversation with him/her.
On the other hand, you need to be careful not to overdo it. Being excessively nice to people might create illusions that you do not want them to have about you. Also, do not interrupt people’s workflow even by offering them free food. This might solicit a thank you at the beginning, but the appreciation can quickly turn into resentment when they cannot reclaim their train of thought.
3. Change your seat
Yes, it’s easier to find a seat that you like and claim it for yourself. On the other hand, if you change your seat every week or so, you get the chance to meet new people and make new connections. You do not want to be seen as a shy person who always sits in the same place and doesn’t socialize with anybody. Of course, you do not wish to impose on people’s privacy and workflow.
What’s more, changing seats allows you to know all the corners of the facility and make the best of the accommodations you have been given. Find the best place that has the most ventilation and the most light. Sometimes you’d like to work in a vibrant place, and sometimes you need to focus more and enjoy more quiet. Finally, if you need to make many phone calls, most coworking facilities have a particular room or quiet space for phone calls. But you should know that arguments over the seat could flare up at any time, and you would do best to avoid them.
4. Connections Connections
One of the most significant advantages of working in a coworking space is the chance to make connections with people from different careers and areas of expertise. One great way to form these connections is just to smile and start up a conversation during your break time. Ask people what they do and where they work. And tell them about you and your project.
Another great way of forming connections at coworking spaces is to refer people for jobs you might have. For instance, you might need a graphist for your current project. You could ask someone you know at your coworking space to do the project for you. This way, people will remember you whenever they need a job done in your area of expertise.
5. Do not mess it up
Keeping your workspace clean and tidy is essential to optimizing your concentration and productivity. Throw any unnecessary piece of paper or food wrapping into the trash can immediately. Use the excuse to wash out your mug to stretch your legs and take a breath away from work. Use little decorative flower pots and other objects around your desk to make the space more pleasant and friendly-looking.
Having an exciting workspace invites people to come over and strike up a conversation. On the other hand, having messy or trash-strewn surroundings repels people and stops any conversation that might involve you.
6. Make yourself a routine
Many people moan about having to go to work every morning. But in fact, having a fixed routine at least five days a week can give your life a lot of meaning and order. The best thing about coworking spaces is that you can create your own routine. You can start whenever is comfortable for you and take a break whenever you want. If you manage to create a routine out of all the breaks and workouts and, of course, the intense work hours, you’ll enjoy much more organized and productive days and peaceful nights.
7. Enjoy the perks
Each coworking space comes with its own set of facilities and accommodations. These facilities might include a swimming pool, an outdoor area where you can sit and work, a gym, a cafeteria, or a restaurant. You can make the most of these facilities during your working day.
It would be best to be careful not to hog the facilities so much that you cause disturbance for the other coworking space members. However, resting and working out with your coworkers can help you form a bond of solidarity and friendship with them.
8. Keep it safe
Coworking spaces are not companies and offices where everybody works towards the same goal. You don’t know all the people working in the coworking space with you. They might even be from competing firms. So you can be friendly to your coworkers, but you cannot entirely trust everybody that works there.
Now providing everybody with a secure internet connection is the responsibility of the managers of the coworking space. However, it is on you to shut your computer off whenever you step away from your desk. Moreover, you would better keep all your confidential files and projects password protected. After all, it is better to be safe than to be sorry.
Working in a coworking facility can be one of the best aspects of your remote work. It can be like working with a group of friends that you don’t have to share projects with. On the other hand, there are some tips that you can follow to make the best of your time and money.
These tips will allow you to have a good relationship with the staff of the facility and your coworkers. You can also enjoy your days and work more when you are at peace with the environment and your coworkers.
Finally, as a freelancer, it is always extremely useful to have lots of connections in different areas so that you can exchange work projects with each other or even initiate ones together. So whatever you do, follow these tips and make your working days as pleasant as your weekends.