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Put Your Business on the Map

Meet Gail Haddon, Centre Manager @ Flexspace Northampton

Gail Haddon Northampton Centre Manager
One of the first things that you notice when you walk into Flexspace Northampton, is how welcoming Gail Haddon, our Centre Manager, is.

Gail took 10 minutes out of her day to talk to me about working at Flexspace and her role as a Centre Manager.

How long have you been the Centre Manager at Northampton?

I’ve been centre manager here for six months and have just passed my probation.

What are your main responsibilities?

Gail Haddon - Northampton Centre Manager
Front of house includes housekeeping; making sure that there is a safe and happy environment and that Flexspace Northampton is operating well.

Our customers’ journey with Flexspace begins when they come to view the venue. I always start in a little meeting room, reviewing their requirements, understanding their business’ background then a tour of Flexspace Northampton. I show them no more than 3 rooms; these are normally the one closest to the one they want and two alternatives of slightly bigger options.

Then we have networking events – although the people who work and visit Flexspace Northampton understand what a great venue we offer, I keep close ties with the local community through both networking events and social events for our clients and tenants.

From meeting room bookings and end of month billing to renewals and licence agreements, there is a strong administration part to my work, including fire alarm tests, health and safety checks and maintenance reviews.

I take pride in how welcoming and clean Flexspace Northampton is as a venue which is achieved through our customer service attitude to delivering more than our customers expect.

What attracted you to this job?

The people at Flexspace. When I met the Area Manager for Flexspace Northampton through my previous job, and saw the venue, I felt that this was the job and people for me.

What do you most enjoy?

This is the best thing I’ve ever done. Every day is varied and it takes good management skills to make sure that everything is planned and done but I really enjoy it.

What are your biggest challenges?

My biggest challenge is to have full capacity of the offices and have those customers renew. This is down to getting the right customer into the right office space and making their experience here at Flexspace Northampton a good one so that at renewal, they want to stay.

What do you think makes a good Centre Manager?

You have to be approachable, organised and definitely calm and cheerful. Being flexible and understanding our clients and tenants and able to listen to their needs.
Interested in working with Flexspace?  Then visit our Careers Page for more details.
#flexspaceuk #flexibleoffices #flexspaceukjobs #flexspace #flexspacenorthampton

Sometimes you can get fed up from working in your own garage, or over cramming your shed with all the stock and equipment you need to run your business efficiently.

As a company, you may require premises that is specific to the activity which needs to be carried out in. There are many benefits to renting a dedicated workshop unit to run your business from. Below we cover a few of them.

Location

Strong transport links via road, rail and air are vital to many businesses, as well as to their staff. Having a workshop unit that is based on a business park is ideal as it gives you the options to pick from small, medium or large units. Workshops on all Flexspace business parks have easy transport links to get to, which makes it an ideal place to base your business. Your location can also play a huge part in the impression you want your business to give to your customers and clients.

Health and Safety

One important consideration for all businesses is health and safety. Employee health and well-being are crucial when it comes to the physical working environment. Workshop units are usually designed for specific use and are better suited when it comes to the health and safety requirements of the work carried out inside them.

Dimensions and Office Space

Exterior of WorkshopEvery business will have a different need for the space available to run efficiently. It all comes down to what equipment is needed and where it can be positioned within the unit you take out. One of the benefits of workshop units is the dimensions and space within that allows the operation to run smoothly. Higher ceiling and areas dedicated to storage will benefit you when working in a workshop unit.

Some companies may need storage space within their units, others may need an office space included within. For SME’s having management and admin staff in the same location for all staff has a lot of benefits. An office within a workshop unit could allow more oversight and efficiency.

Workshop Units For All

It’s not just businesses involved in manufacturing that can benefit from workshop units. Many companies that require space to maintain or store equipment can also make the most out of these workshops. With 58 locations around the UK to choose from, Flexspace offers easily accessible units, allowing your business to succeed in whatever you do.

At Flexspace we take pride ourselves in helping clients maximise the use of our facilities. Most of our workshop units have 24-hour access, CCTV, and come self-contained with their own toilet and kitchen amenities.

We understand that trying to find a place to set your business up can be stressful, with plenty of things to investigate, so we have a management team on hand to assist with any requirements. Nine of our sites with workshop units have staff on hand to help.

The option to downsize or grow can be accommodated on many sites, so if you find your business is booming, we can discuss moving to a larger workshop so that you can plan for the future. Furthermore, as a tenant of Flexspace, you also have easy access to our conference and meeting room facilities which are provided at a minimum cost. Free ample parking is provided at all our 58 sites which is an extra bonus.

So, why don’t you explore having a secure workspace you can call your own? We have a mixture of small, medium and large workshop units to let in ideal locations across the country, all available to let under flexible terms.

If you’d like to find out more about our workshop units, or would like to book a viewing in, call our sales team on 0800 033 4444 or email us in at sales@flexspace.co.uk.

Flexspace provides support for all business clients, be it small or large, whether on short licences – or long-term leases. This blog talks through the advantages in being a Flexspace client, and the support that can be provided from the time you’re setting up, throughout your business journey and as your company grows.

Get Your Business Moving in the Right Direction

When starting up a business, at Flexspace we understand it can be difficult to find the right place to set up and get the ball rolling. There’s plenty to consider, and the to-do list can seem never ending. Flexspace clients are offered flexible terms, with the minimum of a 6-month agreement to sign up to. We avoid tying you into lengthy contracts as you work towards a budget.

Expand Your Office, When You Need To

Should you realise that you need more space to operate comfortably, Flexspace aims to provide a simple expansion agreement, making it hassle free for you to move your business to a bigger area – whether this be for an office space or a workshop unit. Similarly, if you’re looking to downsize, once your lease or license agreement comes to an end, we’re more than happy to assist in providing you with a unit that suits your needs.

To take the burden of having to find or buy office furniture, all Flexspace offices can be ready furnished with chairs and desks. We also provide a range of infrastructural facilities such as running water, power supply and security at selected locations.

Support Staff: On Site, Or On Call

Office Support on HandFifteen of Flexspace locations are manned centres, where there is a fully staffed reception desk, providing clients with staff on hand to help. For other locations, area managers visit the centres almost every week, and are at the end of a phone line to help clients at any time if need be.

We provide access to networking opportunities, so we work to create an office environment that hosts a variety of brands and businesses. Clients can open up to business opportunities within our workspaces and facilities.

Small Businesses Need Support

We believe in giving small businesses the best support to help them make a success of their company. The owner of the business needs to focus on the tasks in hand, not the operation of the facilities.

We take away the headaches that can come with running your premises, so that you can get on with the main challenge: running a successful enterprise!

Perhaps that’s why more companies than ever are choosing to work with, and at, Flexspace. Book a site tour today.

As a business contends with the various stages of its lifecycle, there are likely to be a number of hurdles to jump. We help you explore how Flexspace can help every step of the way through the full business lifecycle.

Flexspace is here to help firms like yours succeed. Our dedicated team are set up with the capabilities and expertise to guide you and help you thrive when choosing the perfect home for your business.

Our commercial premises and services come in all shapes and sizes, from virtual and coworking spaces, to private office and warehouse space. We are confident we can accommodate businesses at any stage of life.

From The Very Beginning

Workplaces to Grow Your BusinessFrom day one a startup businesses will face many exciting challenges and have lots of important decisions to make. This may include establishing market presence and adjusting the business model to set your business on the right track.

Many new businesses choose coworking or a virtual office as the first step to setting up on a firm basis. We can offer an inspiring space to work from with everything you might need. One of the main attractions to coworking is the lower cost for work space, as well as networking opportunities with other entrepreneurs.

The variety of workers in a coworking space gives an advantage to unique skill sets that they can grasp and share with other community members. Connections with others are a big reason why people pay to work in a communal space.

Once your needs change or you are ready to take the next step towards development we will support you by finding you your own private office or workshop.

A Growing Business

As a business matures there is bound to be a change in requirements. Finding the right working environment is crucial for any business. Having a private office or workshop space can give a business its own identity. Flexspace understands that teams can’t set to work without a good phone and internet connection, therefore most of our workshop units and office spaces have high speed broadband. Plus, all of our offices come furnished, with the majority of our workshop units benefit from powered roller shutter doors and personal access doors.

So if your photo studio has outgrown the garage, or working from home can’t keep you focused anymore – we’ve got plenty of options for you, with numerous spacious offices and workshop units available to rent.

Business Expansion

Many established businesses are keen to expand. It could be that a larger office is required due to the growth in staff, or the common baggage that comes with any business for storage space is needed. Flexspace can assist you in adapting and extending to a larger space which suits you as your business grows.

Most Flexspace locations have a wide range of sizes to choose from. Moving is never easy, however we work with you from day one, a step at a time, whatever your profession, however big your team is now, or hopes to become. Whether you are looking for additional warehouse space for your growing business or looking to relocate to a new area, we’re here to assist.

Onwards and Upwards

Growing a Business Beyond One LocationThe time may come when your next challenge is to cover more of the country, so you may need to operate your business from multiple locations. With strategically placed sites around the country, on the transport arteries of the UK, means that you can remain with Flexspace. We can help you increase your reach, and each place, though different comes with a wide range of services to help you grow.

With over 50 business locations to rent across the UK, covering unique commercial venues from Crawley to Stirling and many places in between, Flexspace have got you covered. You can find yourself a space that fits your current workplace with just a couple more similar workstations across the UK at prime locations. Our locations also offer ample free parking spaces. Getting to Flexspace offices and workshops is very simple as we are situated next to major road links, or approximately a maximum of 3 miles away from local network and railway links.

Our range of premises offers the ideal destination for your growing business. Whether you are looking for a small workshop to get started from, or larger industrial units to expand into. We have space to accommodate most businesses and flexible terms to help you get started.

If you’d like to know more details on how you can set up your business at one of our fifty nine Flexspace locations across the UK, please get in touch on 0800 033 4444 or email us. We’d be more than happy to discuss your requirements and go through the variety of introductory deals we have for new clients starting up.

Choosing the perfect home for your business is an important decision and can be an exciting, but also daunting, experience. The need to find the right space with the amenities you need to meet your business needs is crucial. Choosing the wrong space could have detrimental effects on the day to day running of your business or staff productivity.

When it comes to fulfilling the needs of modern businesses, Flexspace centres offer the perfect solution. We provide all the services and facilities you may need under one roof or within a business park.
Your Office Space with All the Facilities

Flexspace Has it All!

We take away the stress and worry by providing you with all the facilities your business needs. By choosing to locate your business within one of our centres you get convenience, a professional address in a prominent location and excellent transport links.

Today’s modern businesses can rest assured that they are in safe hands with Flexspace, the facilities and services available across 59 locations nationwide include:

Free Parking

Free onsite parking is available at all Flexspace locations, you will have ample space for your staff and visitors.

Data & Telecoms

Working in partnership with Excell Group we can build the right data and telecoms package to suit you. Offering VOIP services and up to 100MB high speed or 1GB superfast fibre connectivity (available at selected centres).

Security

Internal and external CCTV is provided across many locations. We also have access control at the majority of sites.

24/7 Access

We are no longer living in a 9 to 5 working world. So when it comes to your working hours, our flexible business units are accessible 24 hours a day.

Meeting Rooms

A wide range of meeting rooms are available to suit all types of usage, from meetings, interviews, product launches to training and workshops as well as conferences. We can also provide you with additional extras including refreshments, audio visual equipment, printing, scanning, copying, laminating and high-speed internet access.

Breakout Spaces

Most locations have breakout areas which are perfect for informal meetings, networking and events. Whether you need space to take a break, or to collaborate with others, we have it covered.

Fully Serviced Centres

A selection of our locations include serviced office provision where our onsite centre management team are able to support you with reception services. Our team will be the face of your business, meeting and greeting clients and giving that extra bit of customer service.

Virtual Office

A virtual office allows a business to enhance their corporate and professional image. With a Flexspace Virtual Office package you can choose mailbox, telephone answering or a combination of both.

These are just a selection of the amenities Flexspace provide, we continuously seek to expand and improve our offering within our flexible business centre locations to ensure we are able to exceed customers expectations.

Search for your nearest business centre, and you can see which amenities and services are available on this site.
If you would like to discover how we can help your business thrive, please do get in touch on 0800 033 4444, we would be delighted to discuss the options available across our 59 locations nationwide. Find a new home for your business.

** Please note that all services are subject to availability and vary dependant on location. Whilst many locations have most or all of the above services, please check first. Ask us when you enquire to ensure that the on-site services match with your expectations when you enquire or visit your local Flexspace.

If Agility is Key, Then Flexspace is the Answer

agile business personWith Britain’s small businesses predicted to be worth £241 billion by 2025, when it comes to business, the future is bright for the agile business.

According to the Federation of Small Businesses, SMEs accounted for 99.3 per cent of all private sector businesses at the start of 2017 and at least 99.5 per cent of the businesses in every main industry sector.

Year on year we continue to see businesses flourish and grow. Unsurprisingly, working environments and the needs of businesses are constantly evolving and we are acutely aware of the business need to keep up to date or even ahead of the times.

All businesses need to be well equipped with the ability to adapt and change quickly.  At Flexspace we strive to be agile and adaptable to ensure we can meet our customers’ needs.

Flexspace is Set Up Precisely for Businesses Like Yours

The commercial property industry has seen a growth in demand over recent years for flexible workspace and the need for greater agility to accommodate the growing, ever-changing needs of today’s businesses.

With a wide variety of workspace now offered by commercial property providers, businesses are in an advantageous position and look to take up space on their terms when it comes to size, space and length of contract.

With a diverse portfolio of flexible workspace available, Flexspace is set up for business owners like you. We provide private office space to accommodate one to a hundred or more desks. We also offer multi functional business units suitable for light industrial use. In addition, we also provide warehouse space, self storage units, and meeting rooms.

Throughout 2018 Flexspace has been busy making changes and improvements to its business centres across the UK, to accommodate the ever-changing needs of today’s businesses. In many areas we have seen an increase in new start ups and organisations looking for 1 – 4 person offices, to meet this demand we have divided larger unoccupied office space into smaller offices and coworking spaces.

Looking for Something Unique? We’re Here to Help

On occasions, we have found businesses seeking a different type of space to those we have to offer, where possible we have tried to adapt our business units, as well as create new units to match demand and satisfy a wider range of business needs.

We are also pleased to provide a number of new and refurbished breakout areas in many locations. Businesses can use these spaces to hold informal meetings, product launches and networking events. These areas have been a welcome addition to our business centres, we do hope you will join us at future networking and charity events which we plan to host.

If you’d like to join other thriving businesses at one of our fifty nine Flexspace locations across the UK, please get in touch on 0800 033 4444 or email us. We’d be delighted to discuss your requirements and the various introductory deals we have for new clients.

This month’s ‘meet the client’ brings us up to date with the latest technology. We spoke with Jamie Brown who owns and runs a 3D printing company Psyber-Tech 3D Printing. Office based, in Flexspace Livingston, they can create a wide variety of objects.

Background and Early Beginnings

Jamie’s background is in electronics and component manufacture. He cut his teeth working for a manufacturer called Jabil based in Livingston. Last year the factory announced they were going to cease manufacturing. This seemed like the perfect opportunity for Jamie to change direction. He wanted to be his own boss, so he decided to set up on his own.

First, Jamie needed premises which would allow him to grow and expand with the business. Flexspace Livingston fitted the bill.  Their flexible terms and facilities encouraged him to become a Flexspace tenant. After investing in a couple of 3D Printers, there was no turning back!

For those Unfamiliar with 3D Printing – Here’s the techy bit

3D printing (sometimes called additive manufacturing) is a process of making three dimensional solid objects from a digital file.

The creation of a 3D printed object is achieved using additive processes. In an additive process, the object is created by depositing successive layers of material. This slowly building up to a 3D object. Each of these layers can be seen as a thinly sliced horizontal cross-section of the eventual object.

3D printing is therefore the opposite of subtractive manufacturing. Subtractive is the cutting out or hollowing out a piece of metal or plastic. It usually involves the use of a milling machine.

The Impressive Benefits of 3D Printing

3D printing allows for the production of complex (and functional) shapes. It uses less material than traditional manufacturing methods as well.  This keeps costs down.

It requires no moulds or prototypes. Yet allows for very complicated products. Many objects include internal moving parts.
Its therefore ideal to develop early products for real world testing. Which means faster to market at significantly less cost. 

What items have Psyber-Tech been making?

Since starting up, Psyber-Tech have made a variety of objects from the everyday to the extraordinary. 
One of the first items to come off the line was a Fixture to hold circuit boards whilst on the assembly line.

More complicated items were manifolds for a set of chemical reactors. They have very complicated internals.  They were made from a certain type of plastic, so it didn’t react with the chemicals.

Psyber-Tech even made a learning tool for children at a local primary school. This supports them in learning specific words, by helping them to build up muscle memory.

During the festive period, Jamie participated in a ‘meet the engineer’ talk at a local primary school. He talked to the class about 3D printing.  As a  parting gift, the pupils were given 3D printed Christmas trees to hang in their homes!

In summary, Psyber-Tech can make anything which can be thought of and designed. The limitations of 3D printing are the limits of the imagination only.

Get in Touch Today

If any readers of this blog like what they have heard, or have any questions, Jamie can be reached on 01506 657307 or by email Jamie_brown@psyber-tech.co.uk

Remember to visit the website www.psyber-tech.co.uk and check out their Facebook page

If you would like to join one of our business centres or if any company would like to work alongside similar companies to Jamie’s, get in touch on 0800 033 4444 for a no-obligation chat about your situation. We’ll try as hard as we can to find something suitable for your business needs. .

Optimism Reigns Supreme

Despite the uncertainty around Brexit and the wider economy, the optimism of small business owners would appear to be bucking the trend. A majority of them are forecasting growth in 2018.

Flexspace undertook their annual Business Sentiment Survey recently, canvassing over 160 SME owners across the country. The majority of the UK’s small business owners are putting growth on their 2018 agenda according to the survey results.

In fact 80% (128) of respondents expect moderate or substantial growth for their business in 2018
A further 78% (126) expect their confidence in the UK economy to increase or remain the same for the remainder of 2018.

SMEs are Vital to the UK Economy

“With uncertainty around productivity, the UK economy and a changing global landscape, it may be easy to assume small businesses are pessimistic about the future,” explained Lee Maytum, Managing Director of Flexspace.  

“Yet this survey suggests the exact opposite. Small businesses are feeling positive with plans for growth.

According to the Federation of Small Businesses, SMEs accounted for 99.3% of all private sector businesses at the start of 2017. That’s the bread-and-butter of the UK economy, making surveys like this so important. They stop us making assumptions about how small business owners are feeling and instead provide a strong indicator to business sentiment and expectations.”

43 per cent of business owners also said they intended to recruit in 2018. A sizable 32% of those, said that they hoped to recruit four or more employees.

“92 per cent of those who responded to the survey currently employ less than 26 members of staff. The intention to up headcount by four or more is a sign of significant growth for a small business,” added Lee.

A Brewing SME Give Their Perspective

Responding to the results, Flexspace Leominster customer and Partner in Swan Brewery, Gill Bullock, said the positive outlook was not a surprise. This was perhaps, a representation of small businesses, like their Leominster microbrewery, of targeting new opportunities:

“Increasing competition in a static market is probably our biggest concern at the moment. That’s why we’ve put strategies in place to maximise new routes to market.”

Almost exclusively working with local small businesses, the sentiment expressed in the survey is a positive indicator for Swan Brewery. Gill explained:
“The ingredients used in our ale are, by and large, from a British source. We use local suppliers and our customers are primarily based in Herefordshire and Worcestershire. There are many different UK-based stakeholders in the chain. Naturally, their mood and income will impact our business too.”

Gill has some advice for other small businesses.

“Anyone concerned about securing growth in the next 12 months. I’d suggest looking for new ways to sell your products. That also helps you stand out from competitors. 
We always aim to establish ourselves as a brewery that’s big on sustainability. That feeds through to our entire business model and differentiates us in a busy marketplace.”

A Landscaping SME Gearing Up for Growth

Based in Flexspace Tockwith, Perennials Gardening & Landscapes, is approaching business in 2018 in a remarkably similar way. Julia Harker, Company Director of Perennials, explained: “We’ve identified new routes to market and we’re gearing up for growth.

We recently moved into our new Flexspace unit to give us better access to areas where our services are in high-demand. We’ve also focussed more on landscaping as opposed to horticultural services. Landscaping for new builds is proving to be a lucrative and growing market for us, especially with the recent government drive to build more new homes.”

About the Business Sentiment Survey

The Business Sentiment Survey was open to all Flexspace customers from all of the company’s 59 centres across the UK.
98% of respondents stated their business turnover was £5 million or less in 2016.

If you’d like to join other optimistic SMEs at our 59 Flexspace locations across the UK, please get in touch on 0800 033 4444. We’d be please to discuss our various introductory deals for new clients.

Business risk for smaller operators or startups is found in many forms. It is often created when a startup actively looks for business premises to work from, for example.

All too frequently, suitable workspaces are sought which will only fit the business plan as it currently stands. The trouble with this approach is that the best-laid plans of SMEs tend to change in the short and medium term.

Sometimes,  the business grows much more rapidly than expected. During these early stages, your business model needs to be flexible and adjust accordingly.

Fortunately, Flexspace offers two types of contract, a shorter licence for flexibility and a longer lease for those who want more certainty in their planning.

Below, we take a look at various risks to your business, including your overhead or business premises risk.

Overhead Risk

The cost of business premises is one of the more significant but inescapable overheads that a small business will face. You should focus on it to reduce this risk to your long-term financial health as much as possible. Aim to sign a contract for a premises which suits your business today and tomorrow.

Flexspace are experts at recommending what type of contract will be best for your business. You should be looking for a space that suits your current requirements, yet have the flexibility to change if needed.

If you need to upscale later, then ensure you are not tied down to a longer-term arrangement than you need. Again, Flexspace provides the sort of flexible agreements which offer shorter arrangements that can change as your business needs evolve. Essentially, flexible agreements remove the threat of several risks but – most importantly – those that come from excessive overheads.

Hiring Risk

Obtaining the right staff is key to many small business managers who rely on a dedicated team of employees. Always take your time to obtain the best people that you can.

Don’t offer a job to a candidate you are not fully certain about. Re-advertise, if necessary. Keep newcomers on a temporary contractual arrangement until you are sure they fit the bill. Removing permanent members of staff from your employment who do not work out can be costly, stressful and time-consuming.

Debt Risk

Nearly all startup businesses operate with a certain level of debt that they need to service. Few SMEs get up and running without borrowing to some degree, in order to handle their inevitable startup costs.

Borrow from a respectable lender who understands the business plan and who can see the longer-term vision of what you are trying to achieve. In addition, it is wise to ensure loan repayments, local business tax and rent are the priority over other business debts, such as supplier invoices. Of course, flexibility from your landlord will allow you to reduce your exposure to longer-term business debt, as previously mentioned.

Should you fall behind with any repayments that are due, then it is better to be upfront. Inform creditors of any short-term cash flow problems you may be experiencing. Work out a payment arrangement with creditors from the outset in order to catch up. This is certainly much better than waiting until they lose patience and call the debt in via the courts. Such action can damage your reputation as well as your bank balance.

Summary

Some SMEs will face particular business risks that only relate to their sector, such as companies who have seasonal workloads. However, all smaller businesses face risk from debt, overhead management and staffing. Get it right in your handling of these three and your business will succeed. Conversely, if you don’t keep your eye on the ball, then you could be placing your enterprise at a greater risk than it ought to face.

Flexspace pride themselves at helping SMEs flourish. Why don’t you get in touch on 0800 033 4444 and see what flexible deal they could offer you.

With 59 sites across the UK, there’s bound to be one that fits the bill.

This month’s client focus (where we take a look at one of our brilliant tenants) is a rather unusual one. We chat to artist Michele Caira, one of Flexspace’s newest tenants. Michele rents a space in our John Smith centre in Kirkcaldy.

Art with hidden depthsIn fact, one of Michele’s creations proudly hangs in the centre’s reception area. As a proud supporter of Michele (as well as being his landlord) Flexspace plan to beautify our meeting rooms in Grangemouth and Livingstone with examples of his creations. We sat down to chat with Michele to understand what motivates him and how he became an artist.

Early Influences and early life

‘I’m second generation Scottish- Italian (from an all-Italian background) . One of my earlier influences was Eduardo Paolozzi, perhaps better known for creating the (Tottenham Court) Tube mosaics amongst many other public works. His work seems to resonate with me, and he creates a similar type of graphic art. In fact, my whole relationship with art could be subtitled ‘the itch that has to be scratched!”

‘I am a late developer as far as art is concerned.  I was interested in art as a kid, and I can remember that it seemed to be the only thing which captured my attention. It also seemed to be the one thing I was really good at.  You could say that art is my first and oldest love. I did well with it at school, but didn’t take it any further. I suppose there was some pressure to work for the family firm. We had a cafe, chip shop and confectioners at the time.’

Forging a career, but not in art

‘After working in the family firm for a number of years, my full-time work took me in a couple of directions. Initially, I worked for Kingsway Entertainments, managing a series of bingo halls.

3D Michele Caira artAfter that, I worked in Health & Safety for Diamond Services 1 in steel construction, a local firm supplying the oil industry. I consider myself a versatile person and I also found myself working in advertising for a period. These jobs were good enough in their own right, and allowed me to pay the bills, but they didn’t provide sufficient relief to the itch that I continued to have in the background. That itch was my subconscious telling me I needed to have art within my life. But that voice still wasn’t sufficiently loud at that time.’

Life takes a different turn

‘Sometimes you have to go in the wrong direction before knowing the right door to open in life’, says Michele.

Industrial art courtesy of Michele CairaIt was this latter period of his life that he decide that art had to assume a significant role. ‘It was now or never I reasoned. So I enrolled at art college in 2005, when I was in my fifties’ he chuckled.  ‘I studied fine art and printmaking at Dundee, and even managed to achieve a 2-1 with honours when I graduated in 2009! Once again I found I was drawn towards the more abstract and graphical elements of art. I am, and continue to be, fascinated by technology and the effect it has on us all. This permeates into my art, where I specialise in the graphical elements with screen printing in particular.’

Art and Self-fulfillment

‘So now I’m doing exactly what I’ve always wanted to do.

Graphical artI might not be earning thousands from originals and commissions (not always affordable to the man in the street) but I am now able to exhibit and sell affordable Giclée prints of my work, which is one of the most pleasurable things anyone can do I think. All my work can be digitally remastered to provide a unique design suited to each individual’.

How Flexspace Supports Me

‘It was a friend how initially recommended I contact Flexspace. I currently occupy an internal office space.  I find its a bright space; it is structured, secure, manned if I’m out (via a front desk), 24hr accessible, friendly and most importantly, it is affordable. Also worth mentioning is the networking and community support, the cafe and the other facilities. The location is very central, its easy to get anywhere really.

The fact that I have a solid base with a real business address gives myself and my ART business the presence and credibility that I need.  In time I hope that my business will develop sufficiently to enable a move to a larger or external space where I would love to exhibit more of my own work but also that of other artists’.

If anyone would like to know more about Michele’s work, it’s available to view in its original form HERE or by visiting The John Smith centre in Kirkcaldy. If you want to purchase a high quality print work, its available HERE .

Looking for more than one location?

Are you looking for increased flexibility and reach without the downside of a long-term commitment or cavernous space.

Or perhaps as your staff shift to a more versatile working model, you need to be closer to where they live, and your customers are?

Flexspace has a dedicated multi-site team who can listen to you come up with all the options. To put together the perfect portfolio of locations and facilities to help your business thrive.

Call our dedicated team on 0800 033 4444, or

CONTACT US TODAY

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