1. Choose your initial coworkers carefully and invite them to be “guests of honor” at the open house.
Think carefully about the type of community you want to build. We wanted a community of digitally creative people, which is exactly what we have now. At the event, designate your new coworkers with special nametags and use the opportunity to introduce them to each other.
2. Solicit the talents of your community.
For example, one of our tenants is a photographer and loves to curate local art shows. He put together a Boulder Digital Arts Midwinter Digital Arts Show and gathered submissions from local artists. Maybe you have a member who loves planning parties or brews beer.
3. Think carefully about the flow of people through the space.
Position food and beverages in a way that encourage people to move through the coworking area and not clump up in any one spot. For instance, place beverages on one side of the room and food on the other.
4. Think about creative ways to handle the management of food, beverages, and clean up.
Have a food and beverage sponsor so you’re not doing everything. Schedule volunteers or family members to help you set up and tear down and then reward them with the leftover food and booze. Also, avoid Costco “Just Dessert” Brownies – they’re delicious, but leave crumbs everywhere!
5. Get a smart, attractive girl to DJ.
Okay, I just had to include this (Boulder Digital Arts’ Operations Manager, Kira, came up with this one, I swear!) But the point is, music livens up any event. So, if one of your coworkers or tenants is a DJ, by all means, let them DJ!