26 June 2019

The Ins and Outs of Shoreditch: June

Summer has officially arrived (sort of) and we’ve been out exploring what’s going on in Shoreditch in these summer months. The sun’s out for longer and we have more time to enjoy what Shoreditch has to offer. To help you out, we’ve made a list of the best places to check out in the area.

Restaurant of the month: Gloria

The new kid in town, Gloria, is already standing out in East London’s industrial area. Part of the restaurant chain Big Mamma Group, from Paris, this is their first venture overseas. Gloria shows us the retro charm of Italy as authentically possible with Italian produce, wine, and waiters. It’s hard to miss with its yellow exterior, ivy-covered walls and an abundance of terracotta flower pots.

Marble, 1950s chintz, pink pinstripe, patterned carpets, mirrored ceilings, and lavish candelabras collide to create a dining experience which oozes 70s decadence – this place is anything but subtle.
With an extensive menu, we recommend a few dishes that will leave you more than satisfied.

There’s the ten-layer lasagne, the lobster risotto (will comfortably feed two) and the best carbonara you’ll ever taste (in our humble opinion!), made in a giant wheel of pecorino cheese right before your eyes. DELICIOUS

Bar of the month: Tayēr + Elementary



Now, this new opening in Old Street is a big deal – and here’s why. Imagine what happens when the man who ran World’s Best Bar for four years (Alex Kratena) teams up with top mixologist Monica Berg to give you an all-day bar. Well, you don’t need to imagine; you can pop on over yourself. Located right next to Old Street, this is a bar of two halves that is definitely worth a visit.

To add to what already seems like an impressive venture, the food here is by TĀTĀ Eatery, so expect a heady mix of Portuguese and Chinese food. YUM! serving a unique mix of Portuguese and Chinese food. Fans of their food can expect classics such as their Iberian pork Katsu sandwiches with panko and shredded cabbage alongside a host of new dishes.

Events this month:

Urban Makers Market
Fans of the Urban Makers Market will be happy to know that they are back in the area for July 3, 6 & 7 at Old Spitalfields Market.

For those who don’t know, where have you been!? Established by two designer friends Ilka Dickens and Julia Redgrove just a stone’s throw away in nearby Bow the Urban Makers Market is all about supporting independent businesses. Expect handcrafted jewelry, skincare products and plenty of beautiful, ethically sourced gifts.



With new openings monthly and plenty of events nearby, our offices are ideally located in the heart of East London. Don’t hesitate to get in touch today – Call us on 020 3984 9530 or email at enquiry@properoffice.com

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11 June 2019

How to work collaboratively in the office

The benefits of collaboration in the work place have been proven time and time again. Yet a recent survey by ClearCompany showed that almost 40% of employees believe that people in their own organisation don’t collaborate enough. Luckily there are some simple changes that your team can make to increase effective collaboration in the office.

A great place to start is with your office space itself. Subtle alterations to your office interiors can foster ideation and collaboration. Informal break out areas like those at Proper Office are a great way to do exactly this as they provide a more relaxed and stimulating environment for ideas to flow. If your team are struggling with collaborative working, try making use of the spaces normally reserved for eating and drinking and see if a change in atmosphere (and a few cups of coffee!) is what is needed.

Whilst a bit of competition between staff is healthy and can boost productivity, is there a chance that competition is preventing effective collaboration in your office? Too much competition might lead to tension rather than a productive brainstorming session. Diversity is always a benefit, so play to each staff members’ individual strengths to limit unhealthy competition. During collaborative sessions, make sure everyone knows what their role is in that conversation and watch the teamwork flourish.

Collaboration comes much more naturally when your team are already friends. Regular team bonding trips and activities are not only important for morale but will also have benefits back in the board room. Feeling comfortable will allow for a much more free and open discussion and therefore more effective collaboration. Escape room anyone?

Our final top tip is not to let remote working decrease your team’s collaboration. A report by OddsMonkey estimated that half of the UK workforce will be working remotely by 2020.2 From digital whiteboards to the latest workflow tools, there is no end to technology designed to combat the potential pitfalls of this and restore cohesion to a widely spread team. There really is no excuse to let collaboration suffer!

A bit of experimentation never hurt anyone and there’s no one way to collaborate. Finding out what works for you may be the best way to achieve effective collaboration rather than forcing it. Either way, the result is a happier, healthier and more engaged team so there’s really no reason not to try. Our breakout areas at Proper Office are ideal for companies that are looking for an office that fosters collaboration. Don’t hesitate to get in touch if this sounds like you.



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7 June 2019

Meet The Professionals : Kitty Man & Ken Chow

Name: Kitty Man & Ken Chow

Title: Husband & Wife Co-owners of Ken’s Kitchen

Company: Ken’s Kitchen

Education: Kitty: University of Leeds – Chinese & Business; Ken: University of life!

What are the main things you do in your role? Kitty: Front of house – trying to keep a calm exterior whilst manically paddling. Ken: all the cooking, that’s why it’s called Ken’s Kitchen!

What are the first three things you do when you get to the work in the morning? Tea, tea and more tea! We probably should be called a tea shop rather than a coffee shop, Ken drinks tea by the pint glass!

How did you get your start in your career? Kitty: In my past life I worked in finance, but Ken has worked in food his whole life, from his time in Australia and Malaysia and then London, and Ken’s Kitchen is our first project together.

What is your favourite thing about what you do? Making people smile.

What is your least favourite thing about what you do? Anything to do with paperwork!

Where do you work: rented space, serviced office, owned office, co-working space etc? Why? Rented space. We did also look into market stalls, but luckily, we came into this space.

How important is your work environment to you? Our job is quite fast paced at times, but it is important for there still to be a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere.   

Do you prefer working open plan or individually? Why? Open plan – it’s the best when we’re working well as a team.

If you weren’t doing this job, what would you be doing? Would be great to be a full-time mum to our 3-year-old, but not sure that would pay the bills…

What piece of advice would you give to someone starting in the business? Just to go for it, you never know unless you try. When we started Ken’s Kitchen it was our first time running a business for ourselves, and we weren’t sure it would work, but we’re still here!

Did you have a mentor? We have been really lucky to have had the support from my parents and Ken’s mum. It’s truly a family business, the combined food industry experience from them is probably over 100 years!

Is there a motto or quote that you live by? We really pride ourselves on customer service and satisfaction, it’s really to treat others how you would like to be treated yourself.

What keeps you awake at night? Josh – our potty-training son!

If you were a superhero, what power would you want to have and why? Would be nice to be able to be in different places at the same time, maybe would be able to make more of a dent in my to do list!

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