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4 ways to find collaboration opportunities (and what to do when you have them)

Nobody knows everything there is to know about business.

Whether you’re looking for a collaboration to expand your knowledge of new areas, or someone to partner with for a piece of content or a campaign, you’re on the right track to grow your business and industry relationships.

Collaboration opportunities come down to relationships with other people — if you’re a people person, or attend networking events, you may have noticed collaboration opportunities informally popping up everywhere, completely organically. 

But if you haven’t found your next collaboration partner yet, where do you look?

1.  Networking events

Find out if there are any communities near you that host regular meetups, events, or networking opportunities. You can find many on Eventbrite, Meetup, and even the council page of areas nearby.

Once you find your intended event, do a bit of research — what type of people will be there? What skill sets are you looking for in the people you connect with? Are you ready to contribute as well as looking to benefit from other people? What do you have to offer? 

Nobody likes the person who wanders around an event like a hunter, but having this information in the back of your mind can ready you with the confidence to ask for a collaboration partner or connection with someone you meet at the event.

2. Online forums and communities 

With the growing world of Facebook groups, forums, online courses, and more, your next collaborative connection could be a click away.

Some online courses also offer access to exclusive community groups where you can ask questions, pick brains, and most importantly, offer your own insight and knowledge. The key to collaboration is giving as much as taking, and many online communities won’t hesitate to call someone out for misusing the other members.

If you’re part of a coworking space like Hub Australia, you can access a comprehensive member portal that lets you not only see what other amazing businesses are in the space but also search by specialty and reach out through the messaging platform. 

Then all it takes is sorting out when to meet for your first coffee.

Read more: Why Your Business Needs a Contingency Plan

3. LinkedIn

Social media is wonderful for growing your network, and gives you a platform to be open about your request for a collaboration partner.

Be transparent, and tell your network what you’re looking for and why — even if the person doesn’t exist in your immediate network, maybe they’ll end up tagged in the post or see it due to another interaction.

Sometimes the algorithms of LinkedIn can work to our benefit.

Read more: How to Help Your Small Business Thrive

4. Your real life networks

Getting out from behind the computer and organising catch-ups and coffee meetings with old colleagues and mentors is incredibly beneficial. Maintaining the relationships and checking in regularly lets you continue positive two-way conversations and reach out to find out how you can help them. 

Get inspired by people who have known you professionally and personally and, even if they aren’t able to help you, they may be able to offer their services as a sounding board or insight-giver.

Read more: Find Out if Your Networking Has the Right Impact

What next?

Make the most of your own networks and their extended ones, and take an active role to reach out and put yourself front and centre before people that can provide you with what you’re looking for.

Your ‘next big thing’ could start with just a single conversation or moment of vulnerability.

If you want to surround yourself with a diverse network of businesses in a coworking space like Hub Australia, you can make the move to your own desk, office, or flexible membership. Then all it takes is the right conversation at Friday afternoon Wine Down, or a Thursday Breakfast Club. 

Make sure you keep the conversation and collaboration honest, transparent, and equal, and work together to achieve something great.

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