Tips Entrepreneurs Can Use to Cultivate Their Personal Growth

For many entrepreneurs, it can be easy to determine where they excel and hone those skills to their respective product or service. However, this can become a burden rather than a benefit if it becomes difficult for them to see the forest for the trees. Not all entrepreneurs have an innate business sense, and those that do are part of a lucky few. Many know how to do what they are best at and let the other pieces fall into play. Entrepreneurs are very aware of the common pitfalls of running a business. Challenges from within can take any entrepreneur by surprise and divert them from the path they set off on when starting their business.

As important as it is for an entrepreneur to invest in their business when starting out, it is equally, if indeed not more important, for an entrepreneur to also invest in themselves along the way. Following are a few of our suggestions for entrepreneurs looking to increase this worthwhile self-investment.

 Continuing Education is the Ultimate Investment:

“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.”
– Unknown

You no longer have to physically put yourself in a classroom environment to continue the learning experience. Thanks to the Internet, there is a plethora of resources that allow you to devote time to learning a new skill or enhance an existing one. Whether it is something that directly relates to your business, or something broader, it will open new avenues that can positively impact your business.

Subscribe to /r/Entrepreneur

Reddit is a vast resource for business owners. Here, you’ll find thousands of other like-minded individuals where you can discuss ideas, get feedback, and help other entrepreneurs with their own issues. If you look at the top posts tab, you’ll find the most helpful or interesting discussions and resources that resonate with other entrepreneurs.

Sign up for Khan Academy

This free resource covers all math levels, physics, chemistry, entrepreneurship, history, coding, and so much more. There are lesson plans geared toward making it easier follow at your own pace. Best of all, it’s completely free.

Free resources at MIT OpenCourseWare

Now you can have complete access to thousands of MIT courses from every department and degree program including entrepreneurship courses. These include video lectures, free online textbooks, assignments, and exams and are completely free for everyone.

Free online courses at HarvardX

Ever wanted to study the masterpieces of world literature? Contract laws? Computer science? Well, it’s all available at your fingertips now. Open your mind with these online courses. Upon completion of the free course, you can receive a certificate of completion (for an additional fee) to add to your qualifications and accolades.

Think about taking up an artistic class at a local community college or workshop near you. Art allows your brain to activate different areas which can lead to new insights. It also nurtures your creativity which can simultaneously be relaxing and rewarding.

Coworking is Community Building

The most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured.”
–Kurt Vonnegut

Taking part in coworking is an excellent way to nurture your creative side as well. Having the opportunity to change venues and charge your mind with an engaging, bustling office space can really get your brain firing on all cylinders. Just being around other professionals is beneficial when you find yourself removed from others or on the go most of your day otherwise.

Coworking offers time to reconnect to the world, network with fellow coworkers, and brainstorm issues that you are trying to tackle in your business. Having a change of scenery or discussion with someone outside of your organization can give you new insight and help pull you out of a rut. The benefits of coworking are good for your overall wellbeing. You will find other entrepreneurs and professionals who will inspire you to keep moving forward and may even serve as valuable contacts for yourself and/or your clients.

Networking Beyond the Norm

“If your business comes from relationships, relationships should be your business.”
– Doug Ales

This is a given, BUT, instead of your usual unproductive business networking mixer take part in something that gets you excited, or maybe even scares you a little. Sites like help you find and connect with other people in a variety of activities like cooking, marathon training, practicing a foreign language, dancing, writing, and more. This is similar to continuing your education but the great thing is that you are also meeting tons of new people who have similar interests and passions. Those connections can prove to be valuable personally and professionally!

Take Care of Yourself Inside and Out

“Nourishing yourself in a way that helps you blossom in the direction you want to go is attainable, and you are worth the effort.”
– Deborah Day

When you’re the heart and soul of your company, your physical, mental and emotional health should become your number one priority. It’s easy to say: “I’ll start next month.” But then that becomes 2 months, then a year, and then five years. Owning a business is not for the faint of heart and if you aren’t taking proper care of yourself, your health will start affecting your business and vice-versa. Start out slow by taking walks after a healthy lunch, take a break every few hours and do something that doesn’t involve looking into a computer screen. Select activities that will help round-out your physical, and in turn, your mental well-being so you can be sharp as a tack and prepared for anything that comes your way.

Get Involved in a Productive Way

“Nothing liberates your greatness like the desire to help, the desire to serve.”
– Marianne Williamson

Not all entrepreneurs are in it for the money. Many get started by solving a problem or providing a needed service. These business owners quickly realize how much they enjoy the freedom of creativity or helping others. Getting bogged down in the day-to-day issues of running a business can be a barrier for some to remember the feeling that got them started in the first place.  A great way to combat those feelings is to get involved charitable work. Helping others creates a positive, lasting effect on one’s well-being.

If you’re an entrepreneur, your personal growth and business growth go hand-in-hand.  In our managed office suites and coworking spaces, we have watched many entrepreneurs grow their business with several of these tips. We love to watch these relationships grow and are proud of the opportunities we can offer our clients!

For a handy reference guide, check out our infographic!

An infographic with advice for entrepreneurs and small business owners to continue their personal growth for the success of their business

The Biggest Takeaway From the GWA Conference In Vegas

In May this year, Allwork.Space published an article titled “Coworking: No Longer Synonymous With Open Space.”

Just a few weeks ago during the GWA Conference, we experienced first hand the truth behind Allwork’s statement. But we also reached an even more significant conclusion:

Coworking is the new term that everyone is using to refer to any type of shared workspace, regardless of whether it is a business center, an executive suite, an incubator, an accelerator, open space, or private space.

Believe it or not, this is good news.

Traditional business center operators and private office providers rejoice; you get to take advantage of the SEO benefits that come with coworking.

But, wait a minute — when did the definition of coworking change?

In our opinion, the definition hasn’t changed, however how the term coworking is perceived seems to have shifted internally within the shared workspace industry as a whole.  Though we can’t give you an exact timeframe, this shift in how coworking is perceived took place when people started to realize that coworking is more about the culture within the shared workspace environment than it is about the layout of the space. Think of it this way: together, the industry has fine-tuned what coworking is.

Again, the essence of coworking has remained the same: to foster a community made up of various professionals from various industries.

Business centers and executive suites have been doing this for a long time. So don’t feel left out, don’t feel outdated. You are as much a coworking space as any that offers hot-desking options.

Coworking has evolved, and this evolution has brought about many different styles or models of coworking. Simply look at two of the major coworking operators, WeWork and Industrious. Those who have been inside their locations know that they offer a hybrid model approach to coworking, one where they offer private space, open space, and meeting rooms.

It’s balance. It’s our industry’s sweet point. It’s coworking.

But why coworking? Why not business center or shared workspace?

Well, the market chose it to be so. There could be a plethora of reasons why ‘coworking’ is the keyword that people are searching the most for online. Maybe it’s because it’s shorter, maybe it’s because it makes people think of collaboration, or maybe it’s because it sounds cool.

In the end, we’re glad to put an end to the misconception that coworking means only open space and hot-desking options. The coworking industry has a lot to offer, and it’s time people acknowledge that.

So, don’t be put off by others calling your executive suite center coworking, as this is a good thing. It means you’re fostering community, you’re building a culture, you’re offering more than simply a physical workspace.

Traits To Look for When Hiring A Community Manager

A Community Manager (or sometimes referred to as a Client Services Manager) can make or break a workspace. They’re the person that keeps everything running smoothly, everyone getting along amiably, and they’re the ones that organize all the fun stuff. Oh, they’re also in charge of making sure the coffee’s always hot.

Although the Community Manager typically reports to the Center Manager, they bear a lot of responsibility and are accountable for all the goings, comings, and happenings in your center.

Have a new member? Have a visitor? Need printing paper? Need coffee? Organizing a party or event? Need to send out an email blast? Have to update social media? Need an extension cord? Gotta give someone notice that their invoice is past due? Need to get next month’s invoices ready to go out?

You name it. They do it. They fix it.

As you can probably imagine then, this job isn’t for everyone. So, where do you find the right person? More importantly, how do you make sure you pick out the right one for your shared workspace?

That’s what we at Office Suite Strategies are here for. We’ll help you find the right fit, the one that will keep your workspace buzzing, with a healthy community, and happy clients. Our President, Karen Condi, has shared some traits that you should look for when interviewing for the Community Manager position.

Traits to Look For and Tips To Help You Find Them

  • What’s your first impression? Is the candidate shy or do they have a strong presence from the get go? Your community manager should be a social butterfly, it should be someone that’s comfortable with meeting new people, isn’t shy to knock on doors, and naturally knows how to get conversations flowing.
  • When looking for the ideal candidate, look for qualities that’d you’d often find in that one friend that throws the best parties and naturally knows how to have a good time, regardless of who is there and who isn’t. (Quick side note here: make sure the person you hire doesn’t promote any networking events…what’s cool about “networking”?. Encourage them to call your events a  party, a member social, or a happy hour–it’ll bring the attendance up.)
  • Of course, the one person that throws the best parties has to have some killer organizational skills. Your ideal candidate is also someone that knows how to handle administrative tasks and is pretty good at keeping his or herself organized; they need to be detail oriented and not afraid to take the lead when it comes to administering tasks.
  • Last but certainly not least, customer service needs to be your candidate’s middle name. The perfect fit will be the person that is good at delivering good news and bad news; they will be patient with members, the won’t hesitate to call up someone and remind them their invoice is past due or when member fees will go up, and they’ll also be the first to want to celebrate a client’s success.

Final Thoughts

Your Community Manager is going to be everyone’s go-to person when they have good news or when they have bad news. Which is why it’s important that this person be someone that people naturally like to interact with at all times.

Ysel Hernandez, Client Services Manager at Lakeside Executive Suites, shared some words of wisdom with us.

“What makes a great Client Services Manager is the ability to think of each client’s company as if it were your own, that way you will be able to provide a level of service that will allow for that company to continue to grow at your center and beyond.”

We hope this helps and don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions, doubts, or need some extra tips to hiring your ideal Community Manager.