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Get Started with Apps – Prince’s Trust and Codez Academy

Codez Academy

Last month we were host to a fantastic course run by Dean Jenkins from Codez Academy for The Prince’s Trust. The course was funded by Capgemini as part of their ongoing digital partnership with The Prince’s Trust. The 5 day interactive, digital skills course was provided for underprivileged young people. Launched in 2015, Codez Academy is the result of Dean’s hard work and passion for web design and teaching, and has resulted in a number of courses aimed at young people of all abilities in Wales to help develop their digital skills. Read more about Dean’s story here.

Held in our Games Room, the course proved a popular and fun experience for the students who not only enjoyed learning new skills but enjoyed the creative space of Tec Marina. Dean will be holding a 12 week course here, starting later this month: http://www.codezacademy.co.uk/adults-beginners-evening-course.html

If you’re interested in holding an event here with us, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line via contact@tecmarina.com

Get started with apps

Gingerbread charity award show held at Tec Marina

Choir Singing

Last month we hosted a fantastic afternoon of tea, cakes and fun when Gingerbread, providers of practical advice and support for single parent families, came to join us for their volunteer award ceremony. The event celebrated the success of their Creating Connections project, which you can read all about here. Our Atrium was the perfect place for the ladies and gents of Gingerbread to receive their awards and enjoy an expertly catered afternoon tea with delicious cakes and sandwiches.

Homemade cakes

We’d like to thank Gingerbread for choosing us as their venue to celebrate their special day and for the lovely feedback they gave us. We’re glad you loved the building and that you felt warmly welcomed! The prize giving concluded with a musical performance by some of the ladies, a lovely note to end on and a great way to thank the organisers of the event. Cakes and sandwiches were handmade by local social enterprise caterers. All produce is locally sourced and all proceeds go towards a great cause.

If you’re interested in holding an event here with us, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line via contact@tecmarina.com

Main event

Games Room of Thrones

Casual Friday for Jon Snow...

Casual Friday for Jon Snow…

 

A cold, cruel wind sweeps across the atrium. Honour is at stake. As the Kingdoms of Tec Marina brace themselves for battle, a solitary rallying cry echoes through the building…

’Table’s free!’

They converge at the doorway of the hallowed space like men possessed.

This is the Tec Marina Games Room…

It’s safe to say that our Games Room, complete with Table Tennis, Pool, retro video games and Air Hockey, has proved immensely popular amongst our residents. Not only a place to relax, chat and catch up with co-workers, it seems to have brought about a resurgence of that most primitive of human instincts.

Competition!

A winner is coming......

A winner is coming……

 

Having a competitive nature often has negative connotations, but the truth is that it needn’t be an indicator of the ruthless need to get ahead! In fact, in recent studies, psychologists have claimed that it’s important for us to get comfortable with and embrace our competitive feelings. These feelings we are told, are indications of what we want and by knowing what we want, we can get to know ourselves.

Healthy recognition of our competitive streaks, even during a friendly game of table tennis at work, often means we have respect for our opponent and beating them has meant that we have channeled our feelings into motivating ourselves to focus and work harder in order to do so. This go get em’ attitude doesn’t end at the table though. After a vigorous and fiercely competitive knock about at lunch, we are often more productive for the remainder of the day!

So long live the Games Room and may the dynastic battle for the Iron Throne of Tec Marina continue!

Wales’ newest innovation centre Tec Marina is already attracting global attention.

This Sunday, Tec Marina was happy to welcome 21 delegates from the Sharaj Business Women Council, based in the United Arab Emirates. The Council’s aim is to inspire, empower and encourage women to achieve their professional and economical potential in the business world.

OpenGenius Training Tec Marina

They came to Wales to spend a day discussing innovation and entrepreneurship with Chris Griffiths and his OpenGenius team. Chris, who designed and developed Tec Marina, said “We were delighted to welcome the group from the UAE. It was a great day and feedback was very positive, with the group describing the space as very inspiring. We are also excited to soon be hosting an event for a group of business people from the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry and we hope to establish long term ties between Wales and the UAE.”

Training Presenting Tec Marina

Tec Marina is a made up of 20,000 square feet of private offices, co-working areas, and meeting and event spaces in Penarth Marina. The building also includes an on-site gym, games room, and plenty of communal break-out space. It is already home to a growing collection of forward-thinking and creative companies, including: OpenGenius, DropTask, The Technology Crowd, 3Chillies, Reachal, Famous Publicity, AD Interact, and MVL Architects – to name a few.

The benefits of serviced office and co-working space at Tec Marina

Deciding where to house your business is a big decision and can often seem like a daunting step. On the surface, serviced offices can seem like an expensive option. However, in reality serviced office space, like Tec Marina, can prove very cost effective for small, fast growing businesses.

Here are 5 reasons serviced office space can benefit your business:

One single monthly bill.

At Tec Marina, we provide our serviced office and co-working residents with one single monthly bill. This bill includes business rates, heating costs, utilities, building maintenance, cleaning, unlimited hot drinks and use of our gym. We pride ourselves on having no nasty hidden fees. Having one, inclusive bill delivered to you every month makes managing your finances simple, and gives you a clear view of your monthly outgoings. It just makes life that little bit easier and that’s what we all want.

The professional image your company deserves.

Sure, running your business from home can mean less overheads. However, one of the main benefits of renting serviced office space is that it provides your company with a real, professional image. No more meeting clients in coffee shops or restaurants. At Tec Marina, our friendly team will welcome your guest and you can hold your meeting in one of our Atrium’s relaxed seating areas. Or, if you are really trying to impress, you may want to hire our one of our meeting rooms.

We do all the housework.

Running a business requires a lot of energy and undivided focus. You don’t want to be washing the dishes or thinking about changing a lightbulb. Your time needs to be spent achieving your goals, not cleaning up after your team. At Tec Marina, our friendly facilities crew keeps the building looking spick and span so you can focus on what’s important – taking your company to the next level.

Ready-made inspiring environment.

Lots of business owners dream of working from an environment that inspires and spurs creativity. However, transforming your regular office into a productive and positive space takes time and money. At Tec Marina, we have done the hard work for you. We’ve created a workspace that makes our residents love coming to work. We’ve added perks like an on-site gym and a games room to give our residents the best possible working day. Our Atrium is the perfect break out area with live walls and ambient background noises. Running your business from a space like Tec Marina, will improve employee happiness and attract top candidates when you recruit for the next role.

Meeting rooms and event facilities.

We have 8 different meeting and event rooms at Tec Marina. From our creative Snugs to our large Deck studio, these spaces can be used for big product launches or relaxed brainstorming sessions. Booking is simple and each room can be hired by the hour, half day or full day. No more phoning around uninspiring hotels to book a lifeless conference room. Impress your clients without the fuss of cross-city travel and invite them to your business’ innovative home.

With the above benefits taken in to consideration, serviced office space is a great, cost effective and flexible option for any small, growing business. Tec Marina makes renting commercial space as seamless as possible and leaves you to concentrate on what matters most – growing your business.

If you are ready to make the move into serviced office space that’s as creative and forward-thinking as you and your business, get in touch with our team today.

 

 

 

Our live walls and how a bit of background noise can make you more productive.

“Getting into a relatively noisy environment may trigger the brain to think abstractly, and thus generate creative ideas.”

This week we switched on the three live walls in our Atrium. So far we have had numerous TedTalks, explored different themes from CreativeMornings and even projected a live Shark Cam – the possibilities for inspiring and creative content are endless.

However, it has been proven that what is being shown is not always the most important factor. The background noise that our live walls create are just the right level to spur creativity and keep residents focused and motivated.

Studies show that many of us find it a lot easier to work, spark ideas and take in information when there is the right level of ambient noise. At this noise level, which is around 70 decibels, our minds are able to wander whilst our brain stays focused on the task in hand, meaning fresh thoughts can arise and propel creativity.

Many creative types can find themselves producing some of their finest work in shared workspaces, not-too-busy coffee shops or anywhere with a bit of ambience. But what if you find yourself in a silent office? Based on the findings above, there have been many websites created that allow you to virtually transport yourself to a bustling environment with just the right amount of noise level. Check out Noisili, Coffivity and Soundrown and see if any work for you.

Our live walls show varied content and produce the right kind of sounds throughout the day. Residents can work from the Atrium and make the most of these noise levels. The key is balance. It’s important to allow your thoughts to wander, but not too far. Our Atrium is “a creative boost of distracted focus”. Come and find out for yourself – contact@tecmarina.com / 02038 188 245

 

Greener Tec Marina

Being hot on innovation and creativity is one thing, but we are also doing all we can to do our bit for the environment and make Tec Marina a little bit greener than your usual workspaces.

It may not be the most beautiful from the outside, but we are proud to have taken over an old redundant building that may otherwise have fallen into disrepair. Breathing new life into an old building reduces waste and definitely has a more positive impact on the surrounding environment.

This building may have been here for a long time, but Tec Marina has been kitted out with modern, state of the art fixtures and fittings that make this place as eco-friendly as possible.

The building has been designed to make the most of natural light with large windows and skylights in the roof. Our windows and doors are aluminium double glazed with a low emissions inner pane. When natural light just isn’t enough, we have LED, motion sensor lights so you don’t have to worry about switching the lights off if you’re the last one to leave.

Air conditioning and effective heating is something that we wanted to offer our residents, however some models can consume a lot of energy. We invested in a state of the art Mitsubishi system with reduced CO2 emissions and a seasonal efficiency increase of 33%. Being in Wales, we are rarely blessed with tropical climates and so our air conditioning is completely optional for each room.

Being close to cycle paths, walking routes and a train station, there are plenty of ways residents can avoid bringing their car to work. Having premium shower facilities on site will mean keen cyclists, runners or ramblers can sweat it out on the way to work, then freshen up before knuckling down. You can check out local cycle routes here thanks to Sustrans.

We have future plans to invest further in our sustainable workspace. These plans include installing solar panels, a charging point for electric vehicles and Greener Tec Marina events such as, “Cycle to Work Day”.

We have incorporated numerous eco-friendly solutions to lessen our impact on the environment and to create a sustainable, healthier workspace for our residents. If you are interested in office, co-working or event/meeting space that can support your efforts to become a little bit greener, then get in touch with our Tec Marina team.

Get more out of your meeting – take it offsite

According to studies, employees spend 31 hours in unproductive meetings and most employees are attending up to 62 meetings a month. These wasted hours have a negative effect on the productivity and morale of an organisation. Taking the time to plan an offsite meeting can have significant benefits for businesses and employees and here are some reasons why:

Increases Productivity

When planning an offsite meeting, extra thought must go into the agenda, the attendees and the running time. With most meeting rooms being hired by the hour, meetings are forced to run on time and in an efficient manner. Being offsite, employees tend to be more focused as they are not distracted by daily tasks.

Encourages Creativity

Remaining in the same old surroundings makes it difficult to break free and become inspired. Being in a new location will break habits and put people in a creative mind-set. Employees are more likely to collaborate and spark ideas off one another.  This relaxed environment is an ideal place for companies to brainstorm and come up with innovative ideas.

Provides Newer Technology

Your usual meeting room may be fine for quick catch up meetings, but why restrict yourselves? Offsite meeting rooms usually provide access to newer technology. Meeting rooms at Tec Marina come with touchscreens fitted with Mind Mapping software, perfect for large presentations and idea sharing.

Develops Teamwork

Offsite meetings give employees a chance to build relationships face-to-face rather than over email. Sharing travel to the meeting, sitting next to someone new and swapping ideas in a non-territorial environment can increase camaraderie and create a more cohesive organisation.

Boosts Morale

Who doesn’t enjoy a change of scenery? An offsite meeting feels exciting and indulgent and can make employees feel valued. This boost of morale and positive energy can often be a source of productivity and creativity throughout the meeting.

Tec Marina has various sized meeting, event and training rooms available to hire. Each room has its own touchscreen and comes with access to unlimited hot drinks. We have worked hard to create an inspiring environment that will help you get the most out of your meetings. So whether your a large organisation looking for a change of professional scenery, or a small business needing a bit more space, download our brochure or get in touch here contact@tecmarina.com for more information.

The Benefits of Co-working

What is co-working?

noun: co-working

The use of an office or other working environment by people who are self-employed or working for different employers, typically so as to share equipment, ideas, and knowledge.

“The whole idea of co-working is to bring bright, creative people together and let the ideas collide”

Co-working is growing ever more popular amongst the self-employed, freelancers and one-man-bands of the business world. There are currently more than 400 x more co-working spaces than this time 3 years ago. But what is it about this working environment that is pulling these individuals away from their home offices and into the world of co-working?

Community

When joining a co-working space you instantly become a part of a living, breathing community; “me” becomes “we”. Workers are no longer alone and isolated with just the cat for company, but they are out there immersed, interacting and learning from one another. The great thing about this community is that it is made up of talented individuals each with their own unique skills and talents. Need help updating your webpage? Stuck on a design for your logo? Chances are you will be working with someone who can help you or refer you to a trusted person they may use themselves.

Co-workers always seem to be in the know. If there’s a networking event or local award show, co-workers will always share this information with one another because they love to see each other thrive and succeed.

Working for yourself can be great but there can also be scary, daunting times for small business owners. Working in a co-working environment, chances are you are going to be surrounded by people who have faced similar challenges and survived them. Sharing solutions to daily problems and being able to ask for advice from a supportive group of people means your business can stride from strength to strength.

Culture

Co-working spaces do not tend to have typical office culture nor do they have the usual politics. In fact, 90% of co-workers stated that they felt an increased level of self-confidence after working in a shared space and felt they could be their true self.

There is a very collaborative culture within co-working communities.  Co-workers regularly work together on projects and spark ideas off one another for future projects. It has been reported that 71% of workers have experienced a boost in creativity since joining their co-working clan. Some larger corporations are actually providing co-working space to external businesses within their large offices to spur innovation and encourage the same collaborative culture within their organisation.

Routine

Working from home you may be able to wake up when you like, have as many breaks as you fancy and even stay in your onesie all day, but when it comes to getting things done is this really a good thing? When working from home, there are an infinite number of distractions that can keep you from staying on task. From chasing after children to cleaning the floors or even getting stuck watching some dull daytime television, there are many things in the home can make it near impossible to structure your working day. Over 60% of co-workers have reported that they have seen an improvement in the standard of their work and are better able to complete tasks on time.

Getting out of the house, dressing in casual business attire and having this change of environment will not only improve your efficiency, but will also better your work-life balance. Your home should be your haven where you can switch off and focus on things other than work. Co-workers are able to relax at home when they have spent the day in the productive atmosphere of their shared workspace.

Facilities

Co-working spaces more often than not, include a lot more than just a desk. Workers are able to take advantage of meeting rooms where they can meet with their clients in a professional, business environment. Most buildings will have a friendly reception desk to welcome any visitors and organise incoming post Tec Marina’s co-working space gives its workers free, unlimited access to premium hot drinks, meaning no more hefty bills after a day of working in over-priced coffee shops where you are guilted into buying something every 30 minutes to remain welcome on the premises. Our co-working desks also come with free access to our on-site gym facilities and any exercise classes that take place at Tec Marina, another reason to leave the house and come to work.

With more and more people taking the plunge into solopreneurship, co-working communities will continue to grow, thrive and achieve incredible things. If you are a freelancer, start up or small business owner looking to restore your work-life balance and get things done, get in touch or download our new brochure to find out more about Tec Marina’s inspiring co-working spaces

Office perks – Coffee in the workplace

Coffee is a big deal.

It is the most popular beverage in the world and is a key part of most people’s daily routines. Having access to good quality coffee in the workplace is an office perk that most employees would struggle to live without.

In the past, coffee breaks may have been seen as a poor use of an employee’s time. However, in more recent years it has been proven that there is a direct link between good coffee and the productivity of an organisation. Complimentary, bean-to-cup coffee is an affordable way for a company to recognise and reward its hardworking employees and for them to feel valued by the organisation.

Here are 2 big reasons why we have invested in top-quality coffee machines that are free for Tec Marina residents to use:

Increased productivity – Coffee breaks have a proven positive effect on productivity levels in the workplace. A break from the computer screen gives a worker the chance to recharge their battery, destress and avoid burnout. As a stimulant, coffee has the ability to improve mental alertness, energy levels and endurance, keeping employees focused for longer.

Let’s get social ­ – In Sweden, the word “Fika” is used to describe an informal coffee break. These breaks can happen any time of day as often as required, and are seen as important social events used to help keep up morale and boost group spirit. A coffee break with fellow colleagues, a manager or clients is the ideal setting for a bit of relaxed relationship building. Not only can you spark ideas off one another, but this caffeine-fuelled bonding session will help improve office culture and inter-employee relationships.

So bosses, if you are looking for an affordable way to keep staff happy and motivated, keep those coffee machines fully loaded. And I’m not talking about those coffee vending machines with the white plastic cups; quality is everything. Providing unlimited, quality coffee to staff is an easy way to show that an organisation cares about its employees’ well-being and happiness and contributes to creating the best kind of working environment.

Tec Marina has invested in 2 premium bean-to-cup coffee machines that will produce the highest standard of hot drinks for residents. If all-you-can-drink, top quality coffee is an office perk you and your team would appreciate then get in touch for more details about our brand new office space.