7 March 2019

The Ins and Outs of Putney: March

Putney is reputed as ‘one of London’s most pleasant suburbs,’ and it really does have something for everyone. With our new serviced office space, Putney now has a growing number of start-ups and freelancers working in the area.

For March, we found the best places for you to enjoy just a short walk away from our serviced office spaces in Putney.

Where to eat…

From its cosy interiors to its mismatched furniture, Gazette Putney has perfectly captured the chic feel of a village café somewhere deep in the countryside of France – which is just as well, seeing as Gazette describe themselves as being ‘London’s most authentic French brasseries’. Their seasonal menu changes all the time, meaning it doesn’t matter how many times a year you pop in for something to eat – you’re always likely to find a new continental speciality to improve your day (and fill that lunch shaped hole in your life).

Where to go for a drink…

Some bars have quirky interiors, some have great live music and DJs, and some are known more for their speciality dining options – Lost & Co, right in the heart of Putney, splits the difference by having all of the above. It’s one of the best all-round bars in the area – suitable for a bite to eat (they’re particularly well known for their wood fired pizzas) and craft beers in the week, or selections from their proudly unique cocktail menu after work on a Friday.

Or, for something more traditional, the Prince of Wales prides itself on being an old-fashioned, no nonsense pub that welcomes anyone from groups of friends to work parties.

Everything else…

For an outdoor activity with a difference, why not learn all about the world of wildlife photography? On Friday 15th March, photographer Iain Green will be running an Introduction to Wildlife Photography course at the WWT London Wetland Centre. The all-day session will begin by guiding budding photographers through how to get the most out of their camera, before heading out to get some practical experience of snapshotting the surrounding flora and fauna. Find out more about the course on the WWT London Wetland Centre website.

If you’re looking for a small office for rent, Putney could be a great place to develop your business in the new year. Why not check out our offices and see which ones suit your company’s needs?

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7 March 2019

The Ins and Outs of Shoreditch – March

With the winter weather behind us, there’s also a new wealth of opportunities for places to eat, drink and be merry – all within walking distance of our serviced office space in Shoreditch.

Where to eat

Whether you’re looking for a great spot for an after-work meal, or just want to grab something during your lunch break, Nanashi is on hand for some of the best Sushi in the Shoreditch area – courtesy of their Japanese kitchen. The menu comprises all the sushi standards and old favourites, plus a few new modern twists, like their salmon or tuna sushi burger.

Plus, if you’re based in our Bath Place offices, you’re pretty much there already – Nanashi is situated on Rivington Street, almost exactly opposite the entrance to Bath Place.

For those of you who aren’t too keen on sushi, a more fail-safe option is The Jones Family Project. Perhaps unsurprisingly, this is a family run affair, and it takes an equally no-nonsense approach to its dining experience – top tier steaks in the stylish downstairs restaurant, or cocktails in the chic upstairs bar.

Where to drink

In the short time since it first opened on the other side of Old Street roundabout, Nightjar has established a reputation as one of London’s most stylish bars. This old school style speakeasy is famous for its elaborate cocktails, including reviving long forgotten recipes and adding their own twist to some of the staple choices. They also host regular live jazz, swing and cabaret nights, making it the perfect destination if you’re looking for a particularly classy night out.

Other things to do

When it comes to fun, team-building activities that will bring everyone right back to their childhood, there really aren’t many options safer than a few games of bowling. The Brick Lane premises of bowling chain All Star Lanes has everything a retro-Americana themed bowling alley needs – bowling lanes, a restaurant, cocktail bar, and even multiple karaoke booths.

Or, if you don’t fancy embarrassing yourself with a steady stream of gutter balls and out of tune power ballads, Shoreditch institution Zigfrid Von Underbelly is hosting London Tap Jam, an evening of live music and improvised tap dance, on the very last Sunday of the month.

As London’s startup and small business centre, Shoreditch has no shortage of places to eat, drink and hang out – check the Proper Office blog regularly for our monthly recommendations.

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22 February 2019

Do Your Office Hours Affect Your Productivity

Do Your Office Hours Affect Your Productivity?

Whether you’re arriving at your desk hours early or burning the midnight oil at your shared office space in Shoreditch, how much of an impact are your office hours having on your productivity?

Do Longer Hours Make for Better Work?

When it comes to our working lives, there’s a tendency to assume that the longer the hours, the better the results. Whether it’s due to raised expectations, a rapidly approaching deadline or simply your own personal inclination to go above and beyond, many of us have found ourselves staying longer, arriving earlier or powering through lunch breaks without stopping.

In fact, there’s evidence that long, irregular working hours and stressful conditions are harmful not only to employee health and wellbeing, but company output as well. Tired, stressed and overworked employees are unlikely to be producing the very best work that they are capable of, no matter how late into the night they’re working, or no matter how many lunch breaks they’re skipping.

Overworking on one project or task can also take valuable attention and working time away from others – stress and burnout now account for around 40% of our sick days.

Employees and staff can both help to reduce the impact of workplace stress – thereby improving productivity – in a number of ways. Employers should be emphasising the importance of taking breaks and focusing on wellbeing, while staff themselves should make sure they’re sticking as closely as possible to regular working hours.

Now that the impact of working hours on productivity are recognised, an increasing number of employees are also experimenting with new approaches to their working weeks.

What is the Future of the Working Week?

Allowing employees to adopt flexible working hours is hardly a new development, but companies are becoming much more receptive to the idea. Whereas previously the practice was often limited to specific cases, such as to accommodate childcare, more and more businesses are letting their staff work for the hours that suit them – providing it does not inconvenience other staff.

This is also closely related to the rise of remote working, as technology has made it easier for staff to collaborate and communication regardless of whether they’re at home, on the train or in the office.

A growing number of companies are going even further. In 2014, Richard Branson’s announcement that he was offering his staff an unlimited holiday allowance was met with scepticism, but since then the idea has grown in popularity. Start-ups including JustPark and Songkick have both adopted the practice, and even claimed that it has improved their output and employee productivity.

Not every business will be able to offer unlimited holiday or a four-day working week, but there is a growing awareness and understanding of the fact that, when it comes to office hours, there’s more than one way of working. Longer hours don’t necessarily result in more productive employees, and finding the right balance that allows people to work in their own way can have real long-term benefits.

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14 February 2019

Meet the Professional – Max Saville, NDLDN

This month for our ‘Meet the Professional’ series, we spoke with Max Saville, New Homes Director of NDLDN. Based on Great Eastern Street in Shoreditch, NDLDN are a bespoke, independent property agency. Combining the hands-on approach usually associated with family businesses and an encyclopaedic knowledge of the East London property market, NDLDN are passionate about what they do.

We sat down with Max to find out more about what drives him in his career.

How did you get your start in your career?

One day I came across an advert in a South London local paper for an Acorn Estate Agents recruitment evening. I went along and ended up arranging a week-long trial, with no pay – three days later I’d been offered a role as a Lettings Negotiator. The rest, as they say, is history.

What are the first three things you do when you get to the office in the morning?

I put BBC News on, make myself porridge and coffee, and respond to my emails. Once I’ve done those three things I’m set for the day.

What is your favourite thing about what you do?

Negotiating, without a doubt – I love the buzz of finalising a deal.

What is your least favourite thing?

Paperwork – but then I’ve never met anyone who enjoys that part!

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

We rent an office on Great Eastern Street. A high street shop front was very important to us – to make the business a familiar presence that really stands out to people as they pass by.

How important is office environment to you?

Very – especially when you regularly have clients coming into your office, like we do. The atmosphere of your workplace is a key part of creating the right impression of the business.

Do you prefer open plan or individual offices? Why?

Open plan – it allows the whole team to communicate and interact, which is especially important in the property industry.

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

Before I went along to the recruitment evening, I had signed up to join the RAF – so I suppose I’d be there.

What keeps you awake at night?

At the moment, my new-born daughter!

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

Live, breathe and eat property. You know that saying, ‘knowledge is power’? Well in this industry, it really is. If someone knows the London property market in more depth than you do, it’s time to brush up on your knowledge.

Did you have a mentor?

I did indeed, my Dad. I worked with him for a few weeks when I left school, and he instilled pretty much my entire work ethic during that short time. I’ve lived by it ever since.

Is there a motto or quote that you live by?

Life is 10% what happens to you, and 90% how you react to it.

If you were a superhero, what power would you have and why?

To fly – I love discovering new places!

To find out more about NDLDN, take a look at their website. ‘Meet the Professional’ is a regular series on the Proper Office blog, where we chat to interesting people from the Shoreditch and Putney areas, and beyond – make sure to check the blog regularly for new post and interviews.

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8 February 2019

The Importance of Inclusion and Diversity in the Workplace

Finding a new person to join any team can be a challenge. From deciding if they have the proper experience to figuring out if they’ll be the right fit for the team, there are a lot of factors to consider. One that can be overlooked, but is of the utmost importance, is diversity and the importance of having a well-represented organisation.

When thinking of diversity in the workplace, it can be easy to pigeonhole the understanding of the term, to simply mean an employee’s ethnicity, however, diversity includes a variety of characteristics including religious and political beliefs, gender, ethnicity, education, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation and geographic location.1 With a diverse workforce must come an inclusive workplace, which is why the two terms go hand in hand. And while diversity and inclusion are always stressed, it is important to understand why.

Diversity = Better performance as a team

Some impressive statistics reinforce that having a diverse team will lead to better performance at a company. In a study analysing 200 teams across different companies, it was found that the diverse teams outperformed individuals 87% of the time and that these teams benefited from an improvement on decision making 60% of the time.2

To bring new ideas to the table

It’s common sense that a diverse group of people would generate an abundance of different ideas as they come from different backgrounds and ways of life – however, for this to happen, it is important that there is a work culture that embraces creativity, known as a culture of sharing knowledge.3 A community that truly fosters diversity and new ideas is a co-working or serviced office space. Putney is home to Proper Office, a serviced office space which also have offices in Shoreditch, where diversity and inclusion is encouraged through social events at their managed offices, bringing together a wide variety of individuals.

Your company’s image

To begin with, in the UK, larger organisations are required to publicly disclose their gender pay gap – therefore it is in a company’s best interest to have proper diversity and inclusion polices in place.4 It also looks better for a company to have a diverse team and the executive teams in place to enforce them – take Netflix who hired a Vice President for Inclusion Strategy and Uber who recently hired a Chief Diversity and Inclusion officer, both respected and successful brands. 5

Retain Talent

By 2020, millennials are forecasted to make up 35% of the global workforce and it is these same millennials who are concerned about diversity and inclusion policies and consider them when deciding where to work.6 Therefore, it is important to factor this when seeking new employees as you could lose out on quality employees if you don’t have the right policies in place.

Whether you work at company’s headquarters’ or in serviced offices, London is a cultural melting pot with individuals from all different walks of life. This is why successful companies ensure they have a diversity and inclusion plan in place as it can only benefit an organisation, not hinder it.

https://smallbusiness.chron.com/define-diversity-workplace-4926.html

https://www.peoplemanagement.co.uk/experts/research/diversity-drives-better-decisions

https://hbr.org/2017/06/does-diversity-actually-increase-creativity

https://www.ciphr.com/advice/5-reasons-diverse-workforce-matters/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/janicegassam/2018/12/19/5-diversity-and-inclusion-trends-we-can-expect-in-2019/#1ede5a9b6f7b

https://www.manpowergroup.com/wps/wcm/connect/660ebf65-144c-489e-975c-9f838294c237/MillennialsPaper1_2020Vision_lo.pdf?MOD=AJPERES

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7 February 2019

The Ins and Outs of Putney: February

Putney is reputed as ‘one of London’s most pleasant suburbs,’ and it really does have something for everyone. With our new serviced office space, Putney now has a growing number of start-ups and freelancers working in the area.

For February, we found the best places for you to enjoy just a short walk away from our serviced office spaces in Putney.

Where to eat…

Nothing says Valentine’s day quite like treating someone to breakfast in bed, and at the Brew Café in Putney you can enjoy the experience without having to do any cooking yourself. Lining the café’s cosy terrace are an even cosier series of beds available for hire – and as a Valentine’s day treat, each booking includes a bottle of Champagne to go with their usual brunch menu. You can find it on Lower Richmond Road, SW15 1JP.

Or, if you’re not feeling particularly lovestruck, consider getting a group together after work to pop along to Popeseye on Upper Richmond Road. Don’t expect fancy starters or sides – this old-school steakhouse specialises in no-nonsense, great quality steaks, plus a highly recommended wine list to toast away the end of Dry January…

Where to go for a drink…

And speaking of the end of Dry January, what better way to celebrate than with a nostalgia trip right back to childhood? The Toy Shop on Putney High Street is a quirky bar with a self-explanatory theme – the colours are bright, the walls are textured like a child’s board game, and the cocktail menu includes specialities like the Play-Doh milk punch (although fortunately there’s no actual Play-Doh in the recipe). Reasonably priced and centrally located, this is an ideal location for groups and casual after-work drinks.

Everything else…

Putney institution The Half Moon is one of the area’s most popular watering holes, but it’s equally as committed to keeping people entertained in its other identity as a vibrant and diverse music venue. The pub hosts regular music nights on almost every night of the week, making it an ideal, informal place to kick back and relax after a hard day of work.

Or, if you’re in the mood for soaking up some of the area’s history, take a short walk over the river to explore Fulham Palace, one of London’s historic houses and a Grade I listed building. Admission to the palace and its surrounding grounds is free every day, and can be accessed from Fulham Palace Road, just across Putney Bridge.

If you’re looking for a small office for rent, Putney could be a great place to develop your business in the new year. Why not check out our offices and see which ones suit your company’s needs?

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7 February 2019

The Ins and Outs of Shoreditch – February

The Ins and Outs of Shoreditch – February

With the new year well underway, there’s also a new wealth of opportunities for places to eat, drink and be merry – all within walking distance of our serviced office space in Shoreditch.

Where to eat…

If you’re looking to impress a date over dinner this Valentine’s day, hotel and member’s club The Curtain is pulling out all the stops with a six-course tasting menu in their rooftop restaurant Lido – or the more casual Red Rooster, where you can take in some live music over sharing dishes. Find them both at 45 Curtain Road, London, EC2a 3PT.

Or, if you’re not planning on breaking out the love hearts and just fancy a bite to eat  with friends, then consider heading to BunBunBun – one of many Vietnamese restaurant’s to be found along the ‘Pho Mile’ on Kingsland Road, but undoubtedly one of the best. The clue is very much in the name with this one – it specialises in Vietnamese delicacy Bun cha, but you’ll almost certainly be able to find something for everyone.

Where to grab a drink…

Dry January is officially over! Congrats to everyone who made it all the way through, now get yourself to one of Shoreditch’s many bars or pubs to celebrate…

If you fancy taking in a spectacular view of London and the Shoreditch area over an after-work tipple, Shoreditch institution the Ace Hotel runs Night Light every Friday – a chance for an exclusive number of visitors to take in views of the city from the private hotel bar. It’s right at the end of the week, so why not treat yourself – TGFF, after all.

Everything else…

Looking to catch a film, exhibit or performance after work? Near our serviced office, Shoreditch is home to Rich Mix, an independent, all-purpose, cultural hub with three cinema screens, exhibition and performance spaces, along with a café and bar. Visit their website to find out what they have on, or pop along to 35-47 Bethnal Green Rd, London, E1 6LA, to have a look for yourself.

Plus, Proper Office’s Yoga teacher Letizia will be helping you to stretch away those January cobwebs. She’ll be running intermediate level classes every Tuesday from 6-7, plus beginner sessions on a bi-weekly Thursday basis. This class can be joined anytime, so just send us an email at enquiry@properoffice.com to find out more and book yourself a place.

As London’s startup and small business centre, Shoreditch has no shortage of places to eat, drink and hang out – check the Proper Office blog regularly for our monthly recommendations.

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31 January 2019

Make the Most of Your Serviced Office Space: How to Boost Productivity

Proper Office is a serviced office space, Putney and Shoreditch based, that is home to a variety of different companies. And while these companies are all different in size, structure and purpose, one thing that they all have in common is their goal to boost productivity. In this blog post, we will explore ways to boost productivity to benefit our diverse tenants at all of our Proper Office locations.

Do Not Multitask

While this advice may go against everything you thought you knew, Earl K. Miller, a neuroscience professor at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, stated that “Multitasking is not humanly possible.” Instead, focus on monotasking and perform one task at a time. You’ll find that you’re more productive then if you had been trying to do five things at once. If you have many different things to do, work in intervals, dedicating a certain amount of time to one task and then switching to another when time is up.1

Take Breaks

Breaks are an essential part of everyone’s day. It has been proven that walking around for five minutes every hour will not only improve your health but your well-being as well – furthermore, sitting too much will increase the risk of dying early.2 It is for these reasons that at our managed offices, we provide ample breakout spaces to give our tenants a place to take a break including a relaxing rooftop garden and ping pong tables that promote comradery.

Exercise  

As we highlighted in a previous blog post this month, working out has countless benefits, especially when it comes to augmenting productivity. Research shows that people who spent at least 30 minutes working out at lunch had an average performance boost of 15% and that those who worked out in the middle of the work day developed better time management skills and met deadlines more effectively on days that they worked out.3

Track Your Progress

Will a certain task take you one hour or just ten minutes? It’s hard to know unless you keep track of your work to better understand your ability to complete tasks and in what timeframe. Don’t worry if you don’t know the answer yet, as research suggests that only 17% of people can accurately estimate how long a task will take them. Gain awareness of your daily activity through tools such as Toggl or Rescue Time that will let you know exactly how your time is being used.4

Be Happy!

Do your best and always remember that tomorrow is another day to start fresh. It has been proven that happy people are more productive as shown by various studies including ones performed by The University of Warwick, Maastricht University and KPMG.5

At Proper Office, we aim to provide our tenants with a productive environment to ensure they have everything they need to get their best work done in our serviced offices. London is a city full of distractions, find an office space with us in Putney or Shoreditch for a refuge from the hustle and bustle in a place where you will always be well taken care of.

https://www.nytimes.com/guides/business/how-to-improve-your-productivity-at-work?mcubz=1

https://www.psychologytoday.com/gb/blog/changepower/201703/is-it-true-movement-is-medicine

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/235275530_Exercising_at_work_and_self-reported_work_performance

https://www.inc.com/john-rampton/15-ways-to-increase-productivity-at-work.html

https://www.thebalancesmb.com/top-ways-to-increase-productivity-2948669

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17 January 2019

Working Out During the Work Week

As we all know, taking breaks throughout the day is proven to improve productivity.1 That is why, here at Proper Office, we believe in breakout areas that include ample space for some time-out — there’s even a Ping Pong table available to employees in both neighbourhoods that we host our serviced offices. London is a busy city with so much going on, making it even more important to consciously include times to take a break. And what better to get your energy levels up than squeezing in a powerful workout during the working week? Here, we explain how working out can improve employee’s quality of life and share some of our favourite places near our serviced office spaces in Shoreditch, so you too can fit in the best workouts during the work week.

Sweat the Stress Away

As much as we enjoy our jobs, there are bound to be moments of stress that threaten to wreak havoc on our mental state. Exercise reduces levels of adrenaline and cortisol, which cause us stress while simultaneously stimulating the production of endorphins – delivering a satisfying natural high. 2 Whether it’s right before work, at lunch or before you head home, even a quick workout can do wonders at making that stress simply melt away.

Augment Your Productivity

Working out takes your break one step further in terms of boosting productivity. In fact, it was found that people who spent at least 30 minutes working out at lunch had an average performance boost of 15%. Furthermore, 60% of people who worked out in the middle of the work day developed better time management skills and met deadlines more effectively on days that they worked out.3

Cultivating Creativity

Squeeze in 4 work outs during the week and reap the benefits: a 2013 study showed that workers who followed this plan were more creative than their counterparts, giving them a professional and personal advantage.

A Twist on Networking

Many people network by meeting other professionals at events and conferences; however, the truth is that networking doesn’t have a time or place. You can meet a potential connection while out for a drink just as easily as at your favourite yoga class at lunch – not only that, working out can be a great way to get to know clients and woo them, making working out beneficial for you and your employer.

Places Around the Office to Feel the Burn

Near our managed offices in Shoreditch, there are plenty of places to get your sweat on and have a productive and energising lunch break or start to your day. We have a few staff favourites that we thought we’d list below.

Frame
“Move your Frame” is the motto of this Shoreditch-native exercise studio. From trampolining to dancing, Pilates and more – there’s something for everyone to enjoy. We love Rebounding and Dance Cardio — why not give them a try? You can find them at New Inn Yard, London EC2A 3EY.

Psycle
Known for their high-energy spinning classes, this boutique fitness brand founded by a Canadian is so much more. At their Shoreditch studio, you’ll have the option of spinning or barre. Go on a ride or take a barre class at 17-23 Whitby St, London E1 6JU.

Blok
A boutique fitness studio with 100’s of classes a week. From boxing to yoga, Pilates and signature workouts – Blok’s classes are designed to push your limits. We’ve enjoyed blokflex and Yogasana. You can find them at Principal Place, 2 Hearn street, London EC2A 3BR.
 

Chroma Yoga
Last but not least, a yoga studio that combines colour therapy with yoga – delivering an immersive, multi-sensory yoga experience. Choose from Red, Yellow, Blue, Orange, Pink, Super Pink, Chromatic or Ganzsound and prepare for yoga like you’ve never experienced before. Find your zen at 45 Charlotte Road, London EC2A 3PD.

When looking for an office space, Shoreditch has many options. Choose Proper Office for its proximity to a variety of fitness studios that will keep you and your team energised and productive throughout the week. Get in touch today to find out more about our currently available offices: enquiry@properoffice.com

 
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0272494415000328

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/exercising-to-relax

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/235275530_Exercising_at_work_and_self-reported_work_performance

https://www.ciphr.com/advice/promote-exercise/

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3 January 2019

The Ins and Outs of Putney: January

Putney is reputed as ‘one of London’s most pleasant suburbs,’ and it really does have something for everyone. With our new serviced office space, Putney now has a growing number of start-ups and freelancers working in the area.

For January, we found the best places for you to enjoy just a short walk away from our serviced office spaces in Putney.

Where to eat

An old favourite hang-out in Putney is Isola del Sole on Lacey Road. This authentic Sardinian restaurant has a warm, neighbourhood feel to it, and is a favourite among locals. Its name translates to ‘Isle of the Sun’, a nickname for the island of Sardinia.

With fresh cooking that remains true to its roots, enjoy seasonal, flavourful recipes of fresh food, presented beautifully.

Where to go for a drink

The Dukes head is a grand Victorian grade II listed building, built in 1864, sitting at the side of the River Thames in Putney.

The almost 150-year-old establishment resides at the start of the Oxford and Cambridge University Boat Race, and has four venues under its one roof. The Duke’s Bar is a traditional British pub with comfy chairs and plenty of beers, spirits and wines to choose from. Perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon with friends.

Everything else

Hurlingham Books is a well-loved hidden gem in Putney. This old fashioned bookshop offers antique classics among its paperbacks, and has been going since the 1960s. And if you can’t find what you’re looking for, don’t sweat – they also have a huge warehouse in Fulham, 10 minutes from the shop, where they hold over a million books.

And then there’s London Wetland Centre, an urban oasis nestled next to the Thames.

This nature reserve offers a great place for a relaxing walk beside lakes, meadows and gardens, where you’ll see ducks, water birds, butterflies, bats, amphibians and water voles.

If you’re looking for a small office for rent, Putney could be a great place to develop your business in the new year. Why not check out our offices and see which ones suit your company’s needs?

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If you’d like to hear more about Proper Office or inquire about our current availabilities, please contact us using this form.