Workplace- Unedited view of a members first year! - Workplace

Workplace- Unedited view of a members first year!

Author since:
October, 2015
61 blog posts

In the beginning – Unbelievably it’s 12 months since I (Arthur Ward -KKANDOO) walked through the doors at Workplace. After many years working from offices on Manchester University Science Park and then Eaton Place on Washway Road in Sale and  a couple of years working from home on a virtual office basis, I’d come to miss the stimulation of a shared environment. For about a year I used the Business Library at The Central Library a couple of days a week and as a Manchester Rate payer I got lots of free time on their spanking new computers. Paying Didsbury Council Tax rates had eventually paid off! But the occasional stranger walking in and telling you random jokes had begun to pale.

The first challenge at Workplace was that they were on the 4th floor and I haven’t used enclosed lifts for some years. Squeezing into a metal box and then shutting you in is not my idea of fun. Using the stairs has never been a problem but the stairs in Churchgate are big. I take the stairs twice a day as I always go out at lunch so  I now have the legs of a mountain goat.

First impressions really do count 

A good start – First impressions were good and I pretty much signed up right away under the relentless pressure from Louise and Adrian! Within a few days I was told about a wine and fish supper evening involving free wine tasting. As I like wine, a fish supper and a night out I said count me in. There I met a few of the other members/tenants and was sat next a nice Irish girl, Gemma, who I have sponsored more times than I can remember since. In addition, she was telling me about her work and background and I told her she was “just a spring chicken” and she said, “so are you”. It made me wonder how bad her eyes were but it was sweet.

A great community feel

Being sociable – Shortly after that evening I was asked if I’d like to come to the Xmas party. As I like a party and a night out I said count me in. You get the picture by now I suspect. By now my wife was convinced I’d joined a social club not a work place. And I began to worry if I could afford the social events and sponsorship never mind the rent. It was a great night and I was sat next to the lovely Lysha and Laura from Qui so I wondered if it was a test!

An Eclectic mix of fellow workers

My Co-Workers   And so I found myself in the eclectic mix that is the Workplace environment.  Thrusting Millennials trying to get on and so energetic but friendly ( would I like to do Yoga, a 10 kilometre run, a Mud Run! – ha, ha), scary recruiters relentlessly hitting  the phones, Hip-hop and Grime agents putting tours together all over the world, Social Media experts who soon exposed my lack of knowledge in this area, marketing and creatives companies, software companies(ah I know something about that), political commentators, and some heavy duty engineering guys I think, graphic artists and so on, jobs I’d never heard of like Data Expert(?). And the loudest laugh I have ever heard from a human being. I’d wanted stimulation and I certainly was getting it – all in a business-like environment and pleasant surroundings.

Lessons from Workplace

What I’ve learnt – * A lot about Social Media – and my thanks go out to all the people I pestered for free advice.  * That although the hot desks are for anyone some places by default are always for some people. (Take them at your peril, such as Recruitment corner) * Recruitment is taking over the world * People are nice * Adrian is a good dancer as anyone who saw him dancing to “Your sex is on fire” at the Xmas party will know* Not to come in with a holiday tan and a stripy shirt as you will be told you look like David Dickenson. * There’s plenty of options on where to sit so vary your days to keep it interesting. * Pret a Manger is not a bad sandwich option and I never thought I would say that – it’s a little bit worrying * The guys from Workplace are very helpful.


So, I’m not planning to go anywhere unless my circumstances change, my legs give out, or Workplace put the charges up. And they wouldn’t do that – would they?


Art Ward


CIAS Limited  B.I.Software Consultants

Art Ward Consulting


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Member spotlight: Gill Morris

Author since:
December, 2016
33 blog posts

Running and managing a coworking spot in Manchester means that we get the privilege of working with a variety of professionals from across the UK. Whether meeting rooms, dedicated desks or event spaces are required, you can be sure we have the facilities to cater for all occasions.

Gill Morris of Devoconnect is no stranger to hosting workshops and events from our central Manchester location. Between taking Westminster by storm and ensuring growth for Devoconnect, you can often find Gill heading up some of the most exciting training events for consultancy practitioners.

Describe your business in fewer than 15 words
DevoConnect is a communications agency that works in the new ‘metro mayor’ regions across the UK (Greater Manchester is one).

What inspired you to start/join your company?
Devolution presents an opportunity to change how politics and business works in the UK. When DevoConnect began, there weren’t any public affairs bodies doing what we do, it’s exciting.

What’s the best thing about being your own boss? (if applicable)
Bursting the Westminster bubble may be a tough job but it’s never a quiet one. I get to pursue the projects that I find interesting and have the biggest impact.

Where’s your favourite place for lunch?
Regency, Brighton. Can’t beat the fish and chips!

What’s your favourite business app, tool or website?
Twitter. It’s the bread and butter.

What’s the best piece of advice you have been given?
Don’t take it all too seriously.

What’s the one thing people should come to you for advice about?
Stay driven, stay focused but don’t forget to have fun along the way.

How can people learn more about what you’re doing?
Come along to our training in Work-Place on 3rd November! All the details are on our website.

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