We Can Learn Plenty From Kids About Work

We all have our different ways of getting things done at work, but at the end of the day, most of us battle the common issues of feeling like there are not enough hours in the day, possibly not really enjoying what we are doing and feeling burnt out by the end of the week. However, there are plenty of 3-4 foot tall case studies running around which can teach us a lot if we simply take the time to look at how they engage with the environment and people that surround them. While (thankfully) kids don’t spend much time in an office environment, the principles that make them so effective at play can certainly translate into our work styles and provide some guidance in terms of how we can improve the way we work.

They Make Do With What They Have

At heart, kids are really resourceful. While they will often pester their parents for the newest this or a bigger that, when they are left to their own devices they will always make do with what they have. If you sit back and watch kids play in the backyard for long enough, you’ll be amazed by how they use their imagination to turn even the most mundane household item into the perfect prop for their play. All too often at work, we are focused on whether we have the all of the resources and information to complete a given task rather than thinking a little outside the square and utilising what we have to get the job done. Granted this may take a little more creative thinking than just going back to your manager for more resources, but you’d be amazed by what can be achieved with what you already have at your disposal.

They Love To Push Boundaries

As anyone who has kids knows, they are always looking to push the boundaries. If you tell your child that they can watch five more minutes of Peppa Pig, they’ll push for ten. If you ask them to only climb up to the second branch of the tree, you can rest assured they will manage to scale at least a few more limbs. While this pushing of boundaries can be frustrating for parents (who are generally trying to establish the boundaries), it speaks to the inquisitive nature of most kids and the fact they are always asking ‘why’. Too many people at work just blindly follow the procedure which has been laid out before them, never questioning whether it is actually the best method. Only through pushing the boundaries of how things have always been done, can things actually improve. As the old saying goes – “if nothing changes, nothing changes”, and a lack of change is not good for a business or its employees.

Everything They Do Has An Element Of Fun To It

Give them half a chance and kids will turn anything into a game or at the very least they will respond much better to a request when it has an element of fun to it. Anyone who has ever tried to get a five-year-old to eat their peas or asked them to get in the bath knows the job gets much easier if you make it fun.  At the end of the day, kids just want to have fun and there is nothing wrong with that. Adults aren’t that far removed from kids in this way, however, we seem to forget this when we get into a work environment. There is a significant amount of research which shows that adding a little fun to the workplace can dramatically increase the levels of engagement, collaboration and productivity of employees. You don’t need to completely gamify your workplace and turn it into a circus, however in most instances there is a very little downside to adding an element of fun into workplace interactions and the upside can be significant. Beyond the obvious benefits for the business outlined above, adding some fun to the workplace will also often have a positive impact on the mental health of employees.

Everyday Is A Fresh Start

Remember how when you were a kid, the time between each Christmas felt like an eternity? This was in part because kids see each day as being so full of possibilities – opportunities to make friends, explore new adventures, learn new things – each day was such a big deal. But it was also due to the fact that as a kid you don’t carry baggage from one day to the next – which tends to link days together for us as adults.  They start each day afresh, in some cases almost as if the previous one never happened. Imagine if you were able to do the same with your workdays. How would leaving the stress of that unfinished report at the office or not worrying about the big presentation you have coming up in a few days time affect your mindset and the way you look at each day? The mentality which we take to work at the start of the day has a massive impact on the way we feel about our work and in turn our productivity and performance. Compartmentalising each day and treating them as individual parcels of time can be a great strategy for improving your mental health and avoiding burnout.

Nothing that kids do as they go about their days’ is rocket science (it would be a bit of a worry if it was) in fact it is quite the opposite – it’s really simple. The issue is that as adults (particularly at work) we forget these basic elements of what makes us tick and just fit in with the crowd. Rather than trying to get kids to act more like us, it may be worth acting a little more like kids from time to time – maybe you could even try for an afternoon nap.

What else do you think we can learn from kids to improve the way we work?


Don Will is the MD of Wilkin Group, which has a number of Business Centres which have offered Virtual Office Solutions for over a decade, and hence understands the changing nature of workspaces.

Wilkin Group can be contacted at info@wilkingroup.com.au or +618 7071 7071.

Tuesday At 3pm, I’ll See You Then.

When is the best time to hold a meeting? Is the early morning sales meeting really productive?

So when is the ideal time to hold a meeting?

Forget about Friday afternoons. Don’t even bother with Monday morning. Try Tuesday at 3pm!

You may think that this time slot is just plucked out of the the air, but studies have actually been done on this topic and this is the golden egg of meeting times. (Appparently!)

Research done by WhenIsGood.net revealed that over 50% of respondents had a Tuesday at 3 pm time slot available for a meeting. In that same study, only 30% had a morning slot available. Interestingly, the same study done five years ago revealed almost the same results.

So why is Tuesday at 3pm the magic time slot?

One theory suggests that Tuesday is best because that is the furthest you can get from the deadlines at the end of the week, without bumping into the missed deadlines from the week before.

Or how about the fact that Tuesday reigns supreme for meetings because people will more often than not take a sneaky Monday or Friday off to create a long weekend and it is far enough away from the end of week productivity sliding scale.

On a more scientific level…..

Circadian rhythms are the physical, mental and behavioral changes that follow a roughly 24-hour cycle. These body rhythms have a dramatic effect on when we are most conducive to any form of concentration required for a productive meeting.

Everyday our bodies go through ebbs and flows in energy and behaviors. Early morning until midday are generally quite productive, but then our bodies quickly lose interest. This is an ideal opportunity to take time out and have lunch. Once we have had time to recuperate, mentally and physically, our bodies quickly attain the same levels of energy as experienced in the morning. So by about 3pm each day, we often find that we feel more productive and willing to engage again.

So why not meet in the morning? Generally speaking, most people like to be able to spend time on their own personal work and plan the rest of the day in the morning. If you do hold meetings first thing, you may run the risk of your attendees not engaging and their minds may be elsewhere.

So… lets meet, shall we say Tuesday 3pm?

Wilkin Group in Adelaide run a number of Business Centres, and have numerous meeting spaces for both existing and new clients.  Out of interest they have done some research regarding meeting times and outcomes.  Wilkin can be contacted on (08) 7071 7071, or info@wilkingroup.com.au  to find out more how they are able to meet your meeting room needs.


A Virtual Office Solution Creates TIME…. & EFFICIENCY !!

This Blog follows on from last week’s when we concluded that for many people WORKING FROM HOME SUCKS.  WE now look in more detail how working from home can … Work.

In this article the words ‘Virtual Office’ are used in the broadest sense, and relates to people working from home  …. or wherever, but linked to the business world through a Business Centre offering Virtual Office Solutions, such as a CBD address, phone answering and meeting room facilities to bring people together as the need arises.

When business calls for flexible work hours, virtual offices create an opportunity for people to work whenever they like from wherever they are.

Virtual Offices allow for reduced commute time, lower technology costs and lower overhead costs (with no lease to pay), which leads to increased productivity, lower overall costs and hence increased profitability.

Benefits for Everyone

Here are seven ways your employees, and your business, can benefit from a virtual office:

1. No commute time.

We’ve found the two or three hours every day that used to be spent getting ready for work and traveling to the office can now be spent as productive time.

2. Employees are easily more active.

Researchers at University of Sydney’s School of Public Health in Australia released a study that found sitting at your desk for more than 11 hours a day increased your risk of death in the next three years by more than 40 percent, regardless of other activity. Interestingly, people working with a virtual office concept naturally move around more as they’re not chained to a desk at an office every day.

3. Flexibility means using less leave days.

Want to have “donuts with dad” in your child’s school class? It’s not a big deal because you can make up the time later. Prefer to work out at lunchtime? No problem—you have a shower in your office now. With flexibility at work the urgent need for a leave day is eliminated.

4. Access to worldwide talent.

Gain a customer in Hong Kong and need someone to be there once a week? That’s no problem if you have a virtual office. Not being tied to just one location means a business can acquire a world-wide presence via a virtual network. Let technology be your slave, rather than the other way around.

5. Less overhead.

There’s no office lease, no utility payments, no furniture  and none of the associated costs that come with having a brick-and-mortar space. All that savings can not only be passed along to clients, or retained as extra profit. There is no limit to the speed that you can grow..

6. Save money on technology.

While BYOT (bring your own technology) started in the school system, it’s quickly made its way into the business world. By working remotely, employees can have the technology they prefer, and they’re responsible for upgrading it when it’s convenient for them. While there are a few cyber risk concerns with not having company-provided technology, that’s fairly easy to manage with a password tool, monitoring and employee training.

7. Productivity increases.

Because you go from monitoring when people arrive to work and when they leave to establishing specific goals, you’ll see an increase in productivity almost immediately. If employees meet or exceed their goals, they keep their jobs. If they don’t, you’ll quickly see that—and be able to weed them out—because no one is around to save them. Letting employees work remotely should also decrease turnover because people are generally happier to be able to do their jobs and not have to deal with the drama that comes along with putting a bunch of people in an office together.

While the virtual office doesn’t work for every business—many companies need people together in one location to get work accomplished—in those businesses where technology truly allows you to work from anywhere, a virtual office offers a strong alternative to a traditional office environment.

Don Will is the MD of Wilkin Group, which has a number of Business Centres which have offered Virtual Office Solutions for over a decade, and hence understands the changing nature of workspaces.

Wilkin Group can be contacted at info@wilkingroup.com.au or +618 7071 7071.

When An Office Just Makes Sense

Most small/micro businesses will start from a home office or temporary office space due to the risks associated with getting a new business idea off the ground. This approach makes sense to manage the downside risk in case the business doesn’t take shape as expected. However, as I have outlined in a previous post there are certainly some limitations to working out of a workspace which is somewhat cobbled together. At some point, the benefits of having a workspace which frees you (and your team) up mentally to be as productive as possible far outweigh any risks involved. However, the $64,000 question is when should you make the jump to a dedicated office space for your business?

When The Team Grows

Managing a growing team from your home office can be a real challenge. Unless you live in a kid-free house with multiple spare bedrooms, it is unlikely that your home office will support any more than a single employee on a flexible basis. In this scenario, you also need to consider how comfortable you are having employees coming into your home and how comfortable an employee will be with this arrangement. The other option for a growing team is to have employees work from their own houses, but then you open up a range of issues involved with managing remote teams. A growing team needs cohesion in a central location which supports the way it works and can scale with its growth.

When The Distractions Become Too Much

Even if your business is still a ‘one man band’ the distractions associated with working from home can become overwhelming. In the home office distractions are everywhere – that load of washing that needs to be hung out, the midday news on TV, checking the mail as soon as the postman has been – they’re all things which somehow become urgent when working from home. One of the underrated roles of an effective workspace is to put you in an environment which is conducive to actually getting things done – distraction free.

How Do People See Your Business?

One of the most common catalysts for seeking a dedicated workspace presence is when a business needs to start portraying a more professional image to it’s clients. Whether it is the need to have a CBD address rather than using your PO Box as a business address or having access to meeting rooms for client meetings, there are a number of facets of a business’ operations can drive the need for an office space. How people perceive a business is critically important to its success and that alone can justify the move to a dedicated office space.

The Dollars Start Rolling In

The most common reason for starting or running a business from a home office is to manage the financial risk of things not going to plan and having obligations associated with a dedicated office space. Once the business reaches a point where it is financially stable, the benefits of having a dedicated office space for your business well and truly outweigh the cost of operating the space. However even as the business reaches this tipping point, there are options such as Virtual Office or Flexible WorkSpaces which can provide many of the benefits of a dedicated office space, without the cost. Selecting the right location will also enable you to grow without changing your address.

So as your firm grows it is more a question of ‘when’ rather than ‘if’ an office space will be of benefit to the operations. Like so many things in life, it can seem like there is no ‘right time’ to make the jump into a dedicated office space, however if the move is managed correctly the benefits can be substantial, and almost instantaneous.

What were some of the things which you thought about when considering the move into an office space for your business?

When you are ready to have a chat regarding an office in the Adelaide CBD, give us a call on (08) 7071 7071.

What Is A Virtual Office & What Are The Benefits?

Don Will, Managing Director of Wilkin Group, Adelaide

In today’s fast-moving business world, a ‘brick and mortar office’ may longer be the best solution for many professionals or small firms.  The ‘Virtual Office concept’ is being adopted By an increasing number of smart operators. And your ‘Virtual Office’ can be whatever you need it to be.

People using a Virtual Office (VO) generally will fit into one or more of these categories

  • working from home, but needing a professional image for themselves.
  • spending much of their time travelling between clients, and hence would rarely be in a permanent office.
  • start-up businesses which in time will require a permanent office, but seeking to contain costs as they get established.
  • busy people who would prefer someone else to professionally answer their business calls, and simply send a message what is required (enabling priorities to be adhered to), or
  • interstate firms seeking to convey the image of a branch in more than one location.

Whilst most providers of Virtual Office (VO) products simply offer an address, or phone answering, or meeting room, Wilkin Group have launched the new generation of VOs, with many standard packages, and also tailor-made VO solutions for a wide array or businesses. Flexibility and client satisfaction are Wilkin Group’s second names!

The most usual package requirement is the ‘Address & Phone package’ which is discounted from the individual Address and Phone offerings. And you even have options to reflect how many calls you receive each month.  For one low monthly fee, the image of your operation to the outside world is one of success and professional – a CBD location, and personal reception staff.

You have a convenient location to meet people in Adelaide as and when required, with an image that this is where you spend much of your working time. Not only does Wilkin office meetings spaces (ten in total ranging from 4 persons to 20 persons), we have ‘Hot Offices’ and ‘Hot Desks’ for use by our virtual clients. Hot Offices convey a different feel for certain occasions than a meeting room, offer privacy and appear as your permanent office.  Sometimes people just require a desk to work at for some hours, or some days, a month. Fast internet is needed, but not the privacy afforded by an individual office. This is when the ‘Hot Desk’ is the best solution, with a significantly lower cost. Again, you specify what you need, and we offer the VO solution.

The most obvious benefit of having a VO is saving money – you only pay for the service you require. And as your needs change, simply let us know and we design a new package.   No expensive rent to pay, nor cost of furnishing a business premise. This makes it ideal for startup businesses and entrepreneurs.

We believe that flexibility is an equally important benefit. In fact, research shows that millennials —who are now the country’s largest generation in the workforce— rank flexibility as one of their chief priorities when seeking a career and actually say they would be more productive with increased flexibility. VO options mean that certain employees can work mainly from home, but have an ’office in the city’ when it is required. Lots of long commuting hours are thus eliminated, and generally productivity increases when people just have to concentrate on the essentials of their business.

Lastly, it’s actually better for people’s health. The University of Sydney’s School of Public Health released a study showing that sitting at your desk for more than 11 hours a day increased a person’s risk of death by more than 40 per cent in the next three years regardless of other physical activity. Who would have thought that a VO solution is better for your health as well.

Wilkin Group can be contacted on (08) 7071 7071 if you wish to discuss your VO needs to improve your business.  And with special offers for the month of August 2018 there is not a better time.

A Different Way To Present Your Business To The World

The cloud is such a crucial source of stability in this day and age, as a dependable place to store our treasured family photos, important work emails and life-saving phone backups. So why not consider the security of also keeping your office ‘in a cloud’ by utilizing a virtual office?

One of the greatest joys of being an entrepreneur or business owner is the opportunity to create a dream lifestyle as you see fit. A virtual office allows you to be a digital nomad, managing your business from a prestigious shared commercial office while also travelling or working remotely from anywhere in the world. For someone with big dreams or a patent-worthy idea, why waste your time answering endless phone calls, keeping track of messages or even spending the time to hire a professional secretary when the Wilkin Group’s team of experts can cover all of this for you and more?

Skip the startup costs of establishing a physical office in a premium CBD location can offer you the opportunity to grow your business while still providing the presence and impression your clients expect. Wilkin Group’s meeting spaces can be tailored for any event, whether it’s a larger meeting, product promotion or seminar or just a private appointment. No matter what the event, an appropriate environment will be yours.  We also cover catering, technology and other equipment so you can focus just on your business.

Businesses today have so many pressures and stresses, whether they are a new business starting up, or an established one seeking to expand, Wilkin Group allows you to dedicate all your energy to providing the best service possible and creating a favourable impression with your clients. It is committed to accelerating your business, starting with address packages from just $89 a month, and phone answering from $115 per month.

Give us a call on 08 7071 7071 or email us at info@wilkingroup.com.au to see how we can help boost your business today.

PS, until the end of August we have a special offer for new virtual clients.  Too good to miss out on.

How Small Business Can Get Benefit From Virtual Office

There are a multitude of reasons why a Virtual Office VO solution can be the perfect fit for your small business, startup or entrepreneurial enterprise. Quite simply your VO provider becomes your place of business, but you only pay for the services you require. You don’t need to pay for a full time office suite if that is not what you require.

Benefits include

  • A VO saves money on leasing a physical space which you don’t require
  • A prestigious business address for mail deliveries, and to hold meetings as required.
  • Your e-commerce website shows a physical address without you needing to be there.
  • Full time receptionist  representing your firm during business hours.
  • Phone call answering in your business name, irrespective of what you are doing.  (Research shows that a local landline creates more confidence and trust into the reputability of your business.)
  • Professional printing, faxing etc when you need it.
  • Work where you want to – at home, in the car or a part-time office.
  • Helps you maintain your marketing identity and presence, which prevents blurring the line between your home and professional life, and Prevents privacy issues due to not having to release your personal number or address.
  • You have a comprehensive team of administrators, receptionists and managers who take care of managing the office, allowing the business to focus its energy its providing its services to its customers.
  • Streamlines efficiency, maximizes productivity and improves profit margins.
  • Ability to display multi business locations to create the impression of a growing presence without having to set up an office at each new location.
  • Ideal for travelling sales teams to meet with each other or prospective clients but not yet needing a permanent space.

The Wilkin Group has a flexible slate of virtual offices packages whether you simply need a business address and mail receiving, secretary services, conference room access and much more. Contact us today on 08 7071 7071 or email us at info@wilkingroup.com.au to find the perfect solution to take your business to the next level.

PS, until the end of August we have a special offer for new virtual clients. Too good to miss out on.  Call us on  08 7071 7071 today!!!

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