Networking is critical to the enduring success of every business. This is even more true for startups and emerging entrepreneurs who are eager to break into their industry of choice. Not all of us are good at it, but we need to do it if we want our business to flourish.
Expanding your network can be even more complicated in new cultural surroundings. If you are new to working in a coworking space in Malaysia, you need to be aware of both local cultural traditions and proper etiquette in these new working environments. If this sounds like a tall order, it might be reassuring to know that with a little awareness and advice you will be networking before you know it.
To this end, let’s look at some specifics of how to effectively network in a coworking space in Kuala Lumpur.
Coworking As The Ultimate Networking Tool
Coworking spaces, in Malaysia and around the world, are excellent opportunities for networking. The open concept nature of the working environment lends itself to establishing organic and authentic connections.
To make the most of this opportunity, be sure to introduce yourself to everyone in your coworking space right away. Be open and make it clear to your colleagues what your business aims to do and what your goals are. Showing a real passion for your work can attract people to you. You never know who in the room might be able to introduce you to potential clients or industry connections.
As you become more comfortable in your coworking space, try to share your ideas and knowledge generously with your colleagues. There may be other experts in your coworking space who can assist you, or even trade expertise, to greatly benefit your business. Showcasing your skills in this way is also a great networking tool.
Premium providers of coworking spaces also provide the opportunity to meet your colleagues and other coworking members outside of the office. Be sure to attend community events and take the opportunity to talk with new people about things that do not necessarily revolve around your work. The connections you make might be the beginning of a long-lasting business relationship.
Malaysian Cultural Nuances
If you want to maximize your chance of forging real connections and growing your network with ease, you need to be well-versed in the cultural specifics of the Malaysian business world. This will serve you well both in your coworking space as well as in any business meeting you might have in the country.
One of the biggest things to be conscious of is the flexible attitude towards meeting times. If you schedule a meeting or networking event for ten in the morning, you might arrive on time to find that nobody else has yet arrived. This is not a personal affront to you, but rather reflective of the more casual nature of structured meeting times in the country. If you do need to keep a tight schedule, make sure to politely remind your attendees on the day of the meeting. Being prepared from this can save you from frustration in your networking pursuits.
When networking in Malaysia, be sure to keep in mind the very hierarchical nature of the business culture. Treat people who have a high ranking in their organization with the utmost respect. Show good manners to everyone, however, and always be prepared to distribute business cards when making first introductions.
Taking stock of the advice outlined here will put you on track for networking success in your Kuala Lumpur coworking space. Using your common sense and applying your cultural knowledge will allow you to thrive and establish yourself in the Malaysian business world with ease.
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