Each month we will be following 2 companies, both sharing their highs and lows and everyday business challenges, as they describe any issues or problems connected to their office any and the choices and solutions they come up with or are presented with.

The companies will remain anonymous as we want an insight into their office situation and not create a branding or P.R. exercise for them. Both are SME’s, in totally different industries where one company has decided to lease their own offices and the second is in a Serviced Office.

This is the post from the Company in a Serviced Office – they will be posting every month. We hope you enjoy the insight……………

March 2014

Dear Readers

One thing I noticed watching a 1960’s film yesterday was a brass band playing through the centre of a major town in the north of England. This may well be a diminishing sight but I think it was always more common in the northern working towns of England where there has always been a somewhat warmer sense of community.

This also got me thinking about the theme of community for the purposes of writing this blog. People refer to ‘business community’ and ‘it’s not what you know but who you know’, etc. These clichés exist because somehow there is some pattern of truth in them.

 

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In our serviced offices there are perhaps 40 different business entities ranging from ‘one man bands’ like me to companies with employees occupying offices for 10 or more employees. It is an unavoidable fact that you see the same people when you are parking, entering or exiting the building or when going to see one of the three administrators: Cagney, Lacey and Stacie. Hence, even the coolness of the South East cannot prevent the occasional ‘hello’ or few moments of small talk.  This is not only pleasant but enforces the idea of a micro business community within the four walls of this building.

 

 

The office manager, Cagney, has had the foresight to compile a Company Directory for the building. It’s prepared as a word document and distributed via email to all contacts in the building. All the tenants are listed in the directory where they provide their company name, logo and contact details accompanied by a concise resume’ of business services offered. In a nutshell it tells the other tenants in the building what you do.  I didn’t take this very seriously initially but there is no doubt that it can only be a useful tool for a variety of reasons.  Imagine if you were given the CV and brief profile of all your neighbours in your street? I bet that would arouse your curiosity? Then again there may be some things I’d rather not know! I think the idea of the directory is inspired and having spoken to a few of the other tenants I’m not the only one who thinks so. It’s not only very useful knowing who does what, from a personal as well as a business purpose, but it adds to the growing sense of community. The diversity of different business types makes it quite interesting and more than once I have been able to recommend someone who has an office in the building.

There is also a growing trend for companies in the building to take the opportunity of occupying a meeting room for a morning and holding a promotional event for their products offered to fellow tenants.  Whereas, ‘small talk’ among tenants while waiting for the kettle to boil is nice sociable interaction the idea of inter-building promotional events takes it to another level.

I think ‘socialising’ is an enriching part of life whether it is with friends, family or potential business related people. In my business I survive on personal recommendations but I don’t like the concept of forced networking. I think a lot of businesses work in this way and it is encouraging to see that the building is not only a place where people carry out work but where to a limited extent you can make friendly and useful contacts.

Until next time, enjoy every ray of sunshine.

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