31 October 2018

Make the Most of Your Serviced Office Space: Setting Up Your Space

When it comes to designing the layout and décor of your office, the process is as much about inspiration as anything else. Here, Proper Office outline how you can set up your space for maximum impact and efficiency.

The first thing to do is identify the main goals you have in mind for the new space. You may want to prioritise collaboration, in which case you’ll want to ensure breakout areas and spaces that encourage and allow working together, such as a space large enough to hold bigger meetings, or somewhere where everyone can eat and have lunch meetings together.

Other possible objectives you may have in mind could be preparing for future growth, increasing productivity, projecting a certain brand and image to workers and clients, or making it a place that attracts and retains workers.

It’s a good idea to look at what other companies in your industry, or even within the same shared office space, are doing, so you can discover any best practices. Not only is this good for design, but for practical reasons, too. This inspiration can work both ways, too – Amazon’s recently built UK headquarters was designed to mirror the sort of flexible, shared office space Shoreditch built its reputation on.

You will also need to take into consideration the practical elements, such as ample space for technology and equipment, as well as enough storage and the security of the storage.

When it comes to the design, every decision can make a difference. The colour of your décor can dictate the mood, the openness of the kitchen can dictate how people move around it, how they socialise, and even effect their moods. Multiple studies have shown that employees based in offices with more creative, inviting décor are happier and more productive as a result.

Next, think about your employees, and how the nature of their roles dictates how they work. For example, open spaces that encourage collaboration are great for designers, but for those working intensely on their own work, having a space that prioritises concentration will be more effective.

One major factor to consider here is sound. It depends on how much leverage you have to design the office, but trying to keep at least one are separate for loud or private meetings, and keeping breakout areas away from desks, are a few ways to design the office with concentration in mind.

The design will also massively depend on the type of office you are moving into. If you are based in a shared office space, for example, you may have the layout already done for you. In this case, you can focus energy and budget on the décor. Do you want the office to be filled with fresh flowers, modern lighting or bookshelves full of books?

Again, this comes down to the nature of the business and what you want to encourage in employees, and how you want the office to make them feel. Regardless of whether they’re based in the headquarters of a large company or the sort of shared, serviced office Old Street has to offer, everyone works better in a space that’s been set up right.

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25 October 2018

Meet the Professional

This month for our ‘Meet the Professional’ series we spoke with Victoria Vannicola, Marketing & Content Strategist at Snapppt, a company that drives sales via Instagram. We sat down with Victoria to find out more about herself and her career.

What are the main things you do in your role?
I create campaigns for brands, match influencers with brands and campaigns, create social plans – IG/FB/Twitter and formulate analytics based on brands x influencer // overall reach (success) they had.

What are the first three things you do when you get to the office in the morning?
1. Check my emails
2. Open up Business of Fashion + Refinery 29 for ideas + industry news
3. Scan through influencers to check for new content

How did you get your start in your career?

I started working with Childrenswear – attending trade shows, I realized that I loved being with the people and being able to ‘sell’ a vision. I then moved into a PR role for a marketing company – this is where my passion for analytics and the science behind what makes the world of social stemmed.

What is your favourite thing about what you do?

Being able to create content – envisioning a campaign and having it come to life through the brand and handpicked influencers is so much fun!

What is your least favourite thing about what you do?

I think the worst part is telling someone they aren’t a good fit for a campaign, even though it isn’t personal.

Where do you work: rented space, serviced office, owned office, co-working space?

Owned office

How important is office environment to you?

Very important – if you don’t feel comfortable with your surroundings, your productivity definitely goes down. I hate feeling like I’m locked up in a quiet zone – work shouldn’t feel like a school library!

Do you prefer open plan or individual offices?

Open plan, but for meetings and video calls I do prefer an individual office.

If you weren’t doing this job, what would you be doing?


What piece of advice would you give to someone starting in the business?

It’s easy for people to make it seem like your job isn’t as important as theirs, they don’t understand the power of influencers & how important a campaign can be in the world of marketing. Big or Small – give every account everything you have. Do not get discouraged if not all your ideas work, it’s a learning curve!

Did you have a mentor?


Is there a motto or quote that you live by?

No one is promised tomorrow. Don’t take today for granted. We all have days where life just seems impossible – it’s important to remember that we need to enjoy every moment, don’t take anything for granted.

What keeps you awake at night?

How much work I know I have to do in the morning…. #procrastination

We hope you enjoyed learning about Victoria. Watch this space for our monthly ‘Meet the Professional’ series, where we will be interviewing a new professional each month and sharing everything from what they do, to what keeps them up at night with you from our serviced office space, Shoreditch based. Did you get a chance to read about Karen Lane in our last ‘Meet the Professional’ post? Karen is the MD at Plus 1 Communications in London business center Shoreditch, where she and her team thrive.

If you’re looking for an office space, Shoreditch has many – Proper Office is a great option with a friendly staff that will help cater to individual’s needs. Contact us today to find what we have available.


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5 October 2018

The Ins and Outs of Shoreditch: October

Shoreditch has become the place to be – whether you’re hungry, thirsty, or in need of some inspiration or excitement. It’s also become the number one place to base your small business or start-up, with its diverse and creative community, and plenty of shared office space. Shoreditch has so much to offer that we’ll be publishing a monthly guide to the ins and outs of the area. For October, we take a look at some of the best places to eat, drink and be merry near our premises.

Where to eat:

Cereal Killer Café

It started with a bang when two bearded brothers set up the country’s first ever cereal café in 2014 on Brick Lane. Since then, the divisive hipster duo have won over the capital’s taste buds, and even had to move to larger premises on the opposite side of Brick Lane. But don’t worry – it’s still decked out with enough retro memorabilia to send you on a trip down memory lane.

It may not be the most conventional choice for dinner, but its cereal concoctions are surprisingly filling – and tasty. Choose from a variety of milks – including non-dairy options, as well as chocolate milk – and a tonne of cereals from the UK and US, and finish with a variety of toppings. They also offer a variety of other food options, but we recommend keeping to the classic cereal. Oh, and you can top it off with a pretty impressive selection of decadent milkshakes.

Where to go for a drink:

Bar Three

This chic, stripped-back basement cocktail bar in Spitalfields is a good old-fashioned option for a fuss-free, well-made cocktail. Each one is created with care and precision, and your taste buds will thank you for it.

The interior design at Bar Three is the perfect balance of sleek, and cosy and chilled out, with many low-lit nooks and corners to cosy up into. It’s the perfect after-work drinks atmosphere, right in the heart of Shoreditch.

What else is going on?

There’s never a shortage of things to do in Shoreditch. And as the weather cools and the leaves begin to fall, there’s no better time of year to appreciate nature, and there’s no better way to appreciate nature than with a visit to Columbia Road Flower Market.

It’s one of London’s most popular weekend markets, with vendors filling the narrow street and selling everything from succulents and cacti to humble houseplants, bouquets and herbs.

Shoreditch is one of London’s best places to work and explore, which is why we’ll be bringing you our picks of the best it has to offer every month. Make sure to keep checking the blog to get all of our recommendations.

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1 October 2018

Make the Most of Your Serviced Office Space: Networking Tips

Networking often sounds harder than it actually is. At its core, networking is simply making yourself available for conversations with new people in and related to your industry of work, and making new contacts that could serve you in the future.

But networking, while it has many benefits, is often difficult to fit into a schedule that involves spending most of your time working in an office with people you already know. It can often mean having to go to after-work drinks and events, which aren’t always practical – and where people are usually keen to leave their work at the door.

And herein lies just one of the many benefits of a serviced office space. Shoreditch may have plenty of other venues for meeting new people, but an advantage of a space like Proper Office is that you’re given the opportunity to interact with professionals working at all sorts of different companies during your working day. Here’s how to take advantage of that, and keep on top of your networking game.

Be prepared

The best networkers are the ones with their elevator pitch memorised and a dozen business cards in their top pocket.

No one would advise memorising your entire spiel, but it’s worth putting in some time to ensure you don’t waste time when it comes to opening lines. Have a clear-cut opening line for when you meet someone new and they ask you about your role and the company you work for.

Likewise, if you’re working on a big project you’re looking for outside help on, it’s worth being sure you can summarise this in a nutshell, in case it comes up in conversation and you don’t want to be caught off-guard.


The best impression anyone can give is being a good listener. And this doesn’t just mean appearing to listen with the odd nod and affirmative noise – it means really listening. This way, you can ask insightful questions and make others feel interesting and important – any conversation goes two ways, and you should be thinking about more than what you need from someone. Being a good listener will ensure you come away from a conversation liked and remembered. Remember that

Take advantage of shared office space

The best opportunities for networking will come at times when you least expect it. You may just meet someone interesting while warming your food up in the microwave.

To take advantage of this, make sure you get away from your desk on breaks and at lunch, to make use of communal space. This is much easier in a shared office space; Shoreditch has many to offer, as well as further afield in London and beyond.

See if your office has a communal breakout area downstairs. You never know what business opportunities you’ll come across while making lunch or playing a game of ping pong in Proper Office’s breakout space or rooftop area, for example. Spend some time in these communal areas winding down and talking to those working in other offices. Shared offices may also have communal kitchens, gardens, or may even have regular after-work drinks between offices.

Whether you’re networking in a shared office space, Old Street bar or at a pre-arranged networking event, taking the time to interact and engage with people can be a crucial part of opening up new business opportunities – and you never know when those opportunities could arise.

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