Monday 21 March 2016

Spring "Organize" Your Office!

Spring Clean Organize Your Office Workspace Desk Suiteworks

It’s officially spring! Which, yes, means it’s time for some spring cleaning. You’ll probably feel the urge to tidy up your home, but it’s important not to neglect your workspace. A messy, disorganized workspace can inhibit your productivity and cause unnecessary stress. But spring “cleaning” might be the wrong name when it comes to your office. It should be called spring “organizing”! But if just reading the word “organize” gives you some mild anxiety, do not fret. We’ve laid out 5 easy tips to get you started and you’ll be clutter free in no time!

Digital Documents
While organizing and decluttering your physical workspace is important, it’s just as important to clean up your digital workspace. If your desktop is overflowing with documents, images, and files, it might be hindering your productivity. Organize your files into a system that lets you easily find and access what you’re looking for. For example, if you have different clients, you could organize each file by client name. Or if you have a few different projects, you should keep all the files of each project together.

Whatever you decide, it should make sense to YOU, and it should keep your desktop clear so when you start work each day you aren’t overwhelmed by the number of files staring back at you.

If you’re anything like me, it can be easy to let papers and files pile up on your physical desktop as well. It starts with one or two files and before you know it, you’re drowning in a sea of paper. The first thing to do is try to eliminate as much paper as possible to begin with. If you use notepads for to-do lists, you might like to try some of the free web-based programs that let you build a to-do list including reminders and more. Evernote and Trello are great options!

For the paper leftover that must stay paper, get yourself a filing cabinet to slide under your desk. You can purchase color-coded file folders and label them. You should have a folder for temporary storage, which you can clean out at the end of each day or week as you need. This will help prevent old irrelevant papers from piling up on your desk and taking up space.

If your desk has drawers, you probably have at least one that acts as an “everything” or “catch-all” drawer, where an abundance of random tools, accessories, and supplies come to live. Over the winter, you might have been too low- energy to bother tidying this drawer up, but there’s no better time than NOW! Grab yourself some drawer dividers from your local office supply store, and get to work sorting those drawers.

Keeping your office supplies in a drawer instead of on your desk can also help clear clutter away. The only thing you really need on your desk is things you actually use regularly. A pen, a notepad, your computer etc. If you use highlighters, paper clips, and post-its sparingly, keep them in the drawer.

Spring Clean Your Desk, distracted by SmartphoneOne of the biggest destroyers of productivity is your smartphone. Ironically, the smartphone can be an amazing tool for productivity when you’re on the move. But when you’re sitting at your desk trying to get work done, the pings and buzzes from your various social networks, the messages from friends to make plans after work, and the pull of your latest bejeweled game can be extremely distracting. So make it part of your spring cleaning to find a designated spot for your smartphone where it’s accessible if you really need it, but out of view so you can focus on the important tasks at hand.

Wipe down
Once the clutter is gone, there is one final step to finish it off. Grab a cloth and some cleaning solution and give your desk & chair a good wipe down. You can use a microfiber cloth to wipe your monitor, mouse, keyboard, and other electronics. Keeping your desk clean and dust free regularly will help keep you healthy, and make a good impression on the boss & coworkers. Don’t forget to toss old coffee cups and water any greenery you might have sitting on your desk.

We hope you can find the time to get your workspace clean and organized. Spring cleaning is important for your mental health, especially where you spend the majority of your time!

SuiteWorks is pleased to offer businesses in Barrie and Simcoe County a range of office space, from co-working desks to virtual office package. Call us to find out more. 1.866.967.5711.

Thursday 10 July 2014

A Virtual Office Can Deliver These Business Benefits

SuiteWorks Lobby and Reception
The Virtual Office model is relatively new, but its adoption by small businesses and start-ups has been a game changer for many organizations. For self-employed individuals, it creates an anchor into a business network - outside of their home office. In addition, small businesses are able to take advantage of business services when they need them, giving their organization polish and professionalism at a fraction of the cost of a full-time location with equivalent meeting space.

If your work demands that you operate outside the standard punch-clock 9-5 lifestyle - you need an office that does the same. You need all the perks and image of a full-time office, without the commitment or the costs. Virtual offices are the perfect complement to a mobile worker’s home office.

Ready to consider a Virtual Office or a part-time office location? Consider these 5 benefits, and then give us a call to arrange a tour of our Business Centre in Barrie. 1.866.967.571

  1. Massive Savings – The traditional business office would demand you to acquire physical infrastructures such as office equipment, furniture and renting an office space or building. In addition you would need to cover the maintenance and cleaning fees. This can be very costly and time-consuming. A virtual office will allow you to tailor your use of space and services to your business needs. This allows you to start off with what you currently need and scale up as your business grows.
  2. Increased Efficiency – Partnering with a Virtual Office provider promotes an increase in efficiency at work. Virtual Office services include handling the majority of the clients’ telecommunications so you will have more time to focus on important projects. A Virtual Office provides an assistant to respond to customer phone calls and handle other business tasks based on your service package.
  3. Professionalism - An upscale or appealing office space at an affordable rate is included when partnering with Virtual Office provider. It could be the competitive edge you need, giving your organization an appealing image representing your brand to clients. Owners and employees feel better working in an attractive surrounding, resulting in motivation and improved creativity.
  4. Lower Risk for a Business Venture – Building a Start-up company has many risks and financial resources are tight. Re-directing investment funds into sales and marketing to kick-start revenue is better than using precious resources to buy space, furniture, and equipment. A Virtual Office may lower the risk of insolvency in case the business faces unexpected financial challenges. Virtual Office pricing allows you to scale back services if needed, just as you can scale up services when your business is growing.
  5. Access to Meeting Rooms - A Virtual Office provides clients with conference rooms for meetings on a demand basis. You don't need to carry extra office square footage that you only use a few times a month. The conference room contains audio visual equipment that your business may not be able to justify purchasing. So by holding meetings in a Virtual Office conference room, you get the space you need when you need it, and the best presentation equipment available.
At SuiteWorks, if you’re in Barrie on Monday, then Mississauga on Tuesday, and Windsor the rest of the week, your office is still open and looked after. Our reception services ensure that all your calls are answered professionally, and forwarded to you; wherever you are. Our phone services keep you in touch, wherever there’s an internet connection. Technological advances have made the internet wireless, and phones smarter. However, the ability to make service portable is truly revolutionary.

SuiteWorks is a world class business centre serving all of central Ontario. Call us today to set up a complimentary Tour and learn how your business can benefit from a flexible office solution including co-working space and virtual offices - Toll Free 1.866.967.5711 or visit our website to find out more about SuiteWorks solutions for your business.

Sunday 8 June 2014

Are traditional offices disappearing?

Here's an interesting article about how workspaces are changing and how business centres like SuiteWorks offer practical solutions to the many forms of small businesses today, from single owner, to larger work-groups.

"As business centre owners and operators know, the office environment isn’t what it used to be. With the rise of online communication systems, the need for a traditional office space is no longer a necessity. Nowadays over 60% of businesses allow their employees to work remotely and focus more on overall job performance than specific working hours.

Due to technological advances in computing, working remotely is more widely accepted than it was 5-10 years ago; and it’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to start and manage entire empires from the comfort of their homes.

Traditional leased office space will always be around, but that doesn’t mean it will always be the most productive. As humans we strive for efficiency and often prioritize convenience over anything else. As digital office systems continue to develop and make working life more efficient, increasing numbers of people will start making the transfer to remote environments.

While traditional office spaces won’t completely die out, they are likely to take a backseat in the not-so-distant future."

Read the full article | Officing Today "Is the end of the traditional office in sight?"

Wednesday 14 May 2014

Thinking About a Coworking Location? Consider These Questions..

Are you interested in learning more about coworking spaces for your small business?
SuiteWorks Business Centre - Café Meeting Area
Coworking spaces vary dramatically in the service level and quality of work environment they provide to clients. At the low end, they may simply provide a chair at a communal table where an individual can access the internet, or they may provide a full range of business services including; conference rooms, reception, virtual office location, and self-contained offices.
When looking for coworking space ask yourself the following questions.
1.) How does the workspace handle sound and distractions?
2.) Is the desk configuration flexible?
3.) What other business services does the space provide?
4.) Are the services affordable and customizable for my business?
5.) Is the office space scalable so that I can use more space or services as my business grows?
6.) What networking opportunities does the space provide?
7.) Does the space provide a range of environments, from individual quiet areas, to space for collaborative meetings and events?
8.) Is the space attractive and does it give my business a professional appearance?

Karsten Strauss, writing about coworking spaces recently in Forbes said,
"Given the intense interest in start-ups these day, more and more young entrepreneurs are looking to coworking facilities to grab relatively inexpensive office space. In addition to WiFi, fax, conference rooms, kitchen and snack-prep areas; these ‘rental’ business studios also offer new companies the opportunity to rub elbows with others in their world. The coworking space industry has seen growth in recent years and that swell is only going to continue. "

He went on to add that the social aspect of coworking was a draw for business people tired of the isolation of working at home, “They find it inspiring, they find it more cost effective and they find that they’re able to be very productive in that environment because of technology.”

SuiteWorks is a world class business centre serving all of central Ontario. Call us today to set up a complimentary Tour and learn how your business can benefit from a flexible office solution including coworking space and virtual offices - Toll Free 1.866.967.5711 or visit our website to find out more about SuiteWorks solutions for your business.

Wednesday 9 April 2014

Holding A Meeting In Barrie? Check Out These Helpful Meeting Tips

Planning a business meeting involves more than just chairs and projectors.

In our experience creating the right ambiance for your meeting, from the seating to the heating, is just as important as any other factor.  Here we've collected some tips to help make your meeting a success, most of these items are ones that attendees don't notice unless something goes wrong. You know you've done your job well if you hear no mention of any of them.

Transportation To The Meeting

If your meeting is held outside your company's walls, consider various transportation options, including letting participants use their own vehicles, relying on local transit, and hiring a shuttle bus. Whichever option you choose, let the participants know the exact details. Send them a map with precise written directions and information about parking availability. Remember SuiteWorks parking is always free and we provide a detailed Google map on our website. If they need to use local buses or trains, give them the exact information about where to get off and how to find the meeting location from the bus stop or train station. Hiring a shuttle bus overcomes all these inconveniences, but, of course, it's your most expensive option.

Your main objective is to have people arrive in the right frame of mind. If they run into surprises along the way because of poor planning, their attitudes may need some serious adjustment.

Seating At The Meeting

Most of us are creatures of habit and, given the choice, generally like to sit in the same place at every meeting. Consequently, people get very irritated if someone decides to sit in their seat. They also find that sitting next to a friend, friendly colleague, or someone of influence is comforting, whereas they often sit as far away as possible from someone they consider unpleasant.

Seating arrangements can psychologically influence your overall meeting effectiveness. Someone who wants to exert influence needs direct eye contact with the person she wants to influence, so sitting opposite that person is considered the most strategically powerful position. People who want someone to take notice of them sit to the right of or opposite that person. Another power position for achieving notice is the seat to the right of the leader; as people look at this person, they also look at you, thus creating a subliminal link between the two of you.

For problem-solving, you want to encourage a high level of interaction and participation, so a round-table setup works best. In this arrangement, all seats are considered neutral, thus avoiding any head of the table. This setup promotes a participatory, open-discussion environment.

A U-shaped table arrangement works best for training. It allows presenters to see everyone clearly and have participants easily accessible. Presenters can choose to stay in or out of the U, depending on how comfortable and close they want to be with the participants.

For decision-making, select a rectangular table arrangement with the leader at the head of the table. Definitely seat participants strategically and avoid seating conflicting personalities next to or even across from one another. Sprinkle them throughout the group. For the best discussions, seat people with opposing viewpoints opposite each other. Also consider a hierarchical seating arrangement, which positions attendees in order of descending authority, starting with the meeting chairperson who's seated at the head of the table.

Heating And Cooling During The Meeting

Trying to control the heating, ventilating, and air conditioning system is one of every meeting and event planner's biggest nightmares. In many modern facilities, such as SuiteWorks, the heating and air conditioning system is often difficult to regulate on a room-by-room basis. So finding a temperature that everyone likes is almost impossible. The result is that we have set the temperature at an optimal setting for that particular meeting room.

If the room temperature is warm when no one is in it, then it's only going to get warmer with extra bodies. It's best to opt for a cooler environment at the beginning of the meeting. In addition, people are less likely to fall asleep when they're feeling slightly cool. Have plenty of warm drinks available to increase the comfort level.

Meeting Room Noise And Other Distractions

Eliminating all room noises and distractions is probably impossible. Still, by getting rid of as many as possible, you can help create the best meeting environment.

Check your meeting room for outside traffic noises, extraneous ventilation sounds, or distractions from the audiovisual equipment or sound system. Doing so is particularly important at an off-site facility that's a new venue for you. Also make sure that the room is away from kitchen noise or other presentations that are being conducted at the same time as your meeting.

Fire alarms don't usually give you the honor of a dress rehearsal. Whether or not the alarm is for real, you have to take it seriously. Before your meeting, make everyone aware of the available exits in case of an emergency.

When choosing your venue, be cognizant of the room decor. Hotel meeting rooms often have themes and are decorated accordingly. Mirrors and large murals or pictures create a distraction not only for presenters but also for the participants. Wherever possible, face chairs away from the diversion.

Want to prevent the sound of those slamming doors every time someone goes to the restroom during a meeting? Apply duct tape over the catch to deaden the sound.

Meeting Room Lighting

If the light is too bright, it strains people's eyes. If the room is too dark, the participants' eyes slowly shut. Whenever possible, use natural light. However, be on the lookout for outside distractions, and face chairs with their backs to the windows.

You need artificial lighting when using audiovisual equipment. Make sure that the light doesn't wash out the screen. If you can, either position the screen away from direct lighting or eliminate lights that are directly above the screen. When meeting off-site, ask the meeting facility to remove or unscrew troublesome bulbs. Doing this is easy if the lights are halogen spotlights, but fluorescent lighting is generally harder to adjust. Here at SuiteWorks our factuality has been designed to offer optimal meeting lighting conditions.

Other Essential Meeting Details

The small stuff often can have the most impact on a meeting. Here are a few things that may give your meeting that little something special:

Providing name cards: For meetings where participants don't all know each other, provide name cards.

Taking minutes: Find out whether someone is responsible for taking minutes or whether this may be something you can do. Use a tape recorder to help ensure that the minutes are accurate.

Adding spice: Games, brainstorming exercises, and activities that foster interactive participation help make things more exciting.

Uncluttering the space: Working meetings can easily become cluttered with leftover food or soft drink cans. Periodically arrange a cleanup session. Removing the clutter often helps to unclutter people's minds and stimulate some extra creativity.

Evaluating the success: As part of your preparation, compile a short meeting evaluation form so that you avoid making the same mistakes over and over again. Try to improve each subsequent meeting based on participants' feedback.

Suggested questions to ask include the following:

• Did the meeting relate to our goals?

• Did we follow the agenda?

• Did we stay on schedule?

• What should be done differently the next time to ensure a quality meeting?

• What conflicts or disagreements were or weren't resolved?

• What was the quality of decisions made?

• How well did we utilize participants' expertise?

• What happened that was unexpected?

Also consider critiquing the meeting from your standpoint. Examine what you would do differently the next time around.


SuiteWorks is a world class business centre serving all of Barrie and Central Ontario. Call us today to set up a complimentary tour and learn how your business can benefit from our flexible meeting rooms.  Office solutions include full time offices, co-working space, part-time offices and virtual offices - Toll Free 1.866.967.5711, or visit our website to find out more about SuiteWorks office solutions for your business.

Tuesday 25 March 2014

How To Sit At Your Desk Properly

Most jobs have a portion of the day in which we are required to sit for one reason or the other.

For some of us, and most of our SuiteWorks community, you may be on the phone or at a computer for extended periods of time, both at work and at home.

There have been numerous studies that conclude that postural distortions can occur from consistent stresses imposed on the body such as long term sitting or repetitive motions. So we all need to be careful and learn to sit properly at the office desk.

For this reason it is important to address how to sit properly at your desk or work station. When addressing the set up of your work area it is important to note the desk, keyboard, monitor, chair, printer and telephone to name just a few factors that can affect your posture.

Choosing a proper set up can limit the amount of stresses imposed on the body and reduce the probability of a problem. Things to focus on include putting the monitor directly in front of your keyboard and at eye level.

Set up of the chair also will affect your posture when sitting. Office chairs typically have adjustable pieces. Make sure to set the chair back height at the appropriate level as well as the arms if you have them. Using a chair that has the right depth from the front of the chair to the back is something commonly overlooked and should be addressed.

The chair height is usually the easiest fix in setting up your office ergonomically. Make sure to use the pneumonic lever to adjust the height of the chair putting you at eye level with the monitor.

If you are suffering from pain or discomfort from a chronic situation that you cannot figure out how to fix, consult your local chiropractor. A chiropractor can help to address your ergonomic problems and any postural distortion that may have been caused as a result.


SuiteWorks is a world class business centre serving all of central Ontario. Call us today to set up a complimentary Tour and learn how your business can benefit from a flexible office solution including coworking space and virtual offices - Toll Free 1.866.967.5711 or visit our website to find out more about SuiteWorks solutions for your business.

Wednesday 19 March 2014

Toronto Star Article: Coworking connects entrepreneurs through shared office spaces

SuiteWorks in Barrie is also a popular Co-Working Location For Central Ontario

SuiteWorks is a world class business centre serving all of central Ontario. Call us today to set up a complimentary Tour and learn how your business can benefit from a flexible office solution including coworking space and virtual offices - Toll Free 1.866.967.5711 or visit our website to find out more about SuiteWorks solutions for your business.