What makes a good meeting room…

Here at zipcube.com we know how tough it can be to find the perfect meeting room for your event. Luckily, we have had quite a lot of experience at this now and have put together a little guide to help you in choosing that venue.

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  1. Location, location, location. It is an old saying, but that doesn’t make it any less accurate today. You need to choose somewhere that is convenient for everyone coming to the meeting, not just for you. Access to public transport is essential these days when making a decision as to where to hold the meeting.
  2. Your Budget. Have a budget ready before you start your search, but make sure it a realistic budget or you are going to be searching for something that doesn’t exist. If you are holding a meeting for 20 people in central London… you aren’t getting a room for £20/hour. Remember, you get what you pay for. Spending that little bit more might mean your meeting goes much better overall.
  3. Size. You can’t compromise on this. If you have 12 people, get a room that can accommodate 12 people. Don’t decide that you will squash into a 10-person room. This will lead to an unpleasant meeting for all involved.
  4. Refreshments. How long is your meeting? All day? Well, you are probably going to need to keep your attendees fed and watered, unless you want a lot of grumpy people sat around a table. Keep this in mind when picking your venue as not all will necessarily offer catering.
  5. Facilities. Most meeting rooms on zipcube.com do have some form of AV facility, but it is important to make sure that your room does have everything you need for the meeting you have planned. It can be easy to overlook something, like disabled access or use of a microphone, when booking a room, so make a list beforehand of everything you need.
  6. The décor. What type of meeting are you holding? What type of impression are you trying to give? These are things you need to consider when deciding on your room. Some rooms are better suited to brainstorming, creative meetings. Some rooms are better suited to executive, professional board meetings.
  7. Recommendations. Here on zipcube.com everyone that uses a meeting room has the ability to review the room afterwards, so pay attention to what they say. Our staff also spend all day on the phone to venues and venue bookers, so they tend to know what they are talking about, since they want you to have a good meeting and come back to us, they are going to recommend venues which they know can meet all your requirements.

How to get your events trending.

 

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You have a large event taking place in the coming weeks and you have been tasked with getting it trending on social media… How do you go about making sure that the right people are following it and that they engage in conversations about it, in the build up to the event, and on the day?

There is no doubt that you will have dozens of other things happening to do with the event… and well, not to do with the event, because we know the rest of the world doesn’t stop turning just because you aren’t in the office that day.

 

Firstly, if you are going to take this seriously, then you need to make sure either you, or someone else, is the designated social media manager on the day. In the run up to the event, sure, everyone can chip in, but on the day… you will need one person looking after social media, and that will have to be their only role.

  • They need to make sure that they know the days running order perfectly so that they can post the appropriate content at the right time. Even better, have it all prescheduled through a social media tool well in advance, so that they can spend their time actually replying to people and driving those all-important conversations.
  • Have a decent amount of content ready to go… you know what the likely questions are going to be, so have responses ready so you can just paste them in.
  • It sounds obvious but make sure that all the platforms are ready to go, far too often people just focus on one platform and miss out on a huge amount of potential interest.

 

Contests. These are always a great way to stir up interest in your event. The more exciting and unique the prize, the more interest you are likely to generate. These contests can take several different forms and there is no limit on the number you can have running concurrently as long as you have the prizes to dish out… (competitions are an art form all of their own, and we will be putting together a list of dos and don’ts for this very soon.)

  • The most basic is just a tweet containing the hashtag that you have assigned to the event, but why not make it more interesting than that add a leaderboard, the more tweets with the hashtag that a user makes, the higher they climb… keep track of it openly and get some competition flowing.
  • Take a photo with a certain person (warn that person!) to enter.
  • Caption contests can be good fun… but know your audience here, this can go horribly wrong, as Shell learned with their “Arctic Ready” campaign.
  • Fastest fingers… quiz your followers about the event and the first one to respond wins. Simple.

Make sure your content is interesting, and is delivered with a punch. Posts with images get a lot more views, favourites and a hell of a lot more retweets. Get someone posting photos of the speakers, the networking and some of the parties going on. The more images and exciting content that you can get out there, the more likely people are to post their own experiences as well. Get some videos loaded onto your channels as well. Maybe have someone on your team wandering around the event taking photos of attendees and then sending them directly to them on twitter or Instagram… this is also a great way to capture leads!

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Choose those Hashtags carefully.

  • Make sure you check every possible way that the # can be read, otherwise you could end up with some embarrassing tweets being added to your event.
  • Keep the # short and simple, people need those extra characters for their tweets.
  • Educate the audience; make sure that everyone knows the # before they arrive, at the very least as they enter the event. Why not encourage people to start using the # before the event itself, let them know that they can start using it for networking before the event. You can also run a pre-event competition to get the # out there early on.
  • Showing social media up on screens around the event will encourage people to use the # in hopes of seeing their message up on the screen.

 

Got a sponsor? Get them using the hashtag as well. Get them running competitions where entrants need to use your hashtag to enter; it is win win for you and the sponsor as both of your coverage will increase across social media.

Got a big guest? Same rules apply.

8 ways to make your meeting more productive

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We have all been to that meeting where you aren’t sure exactly why you are there. We have all struggled to keep our eyes open throughout a meeting which seems to go on forever.

Your time is valuable, and if you want your company to succeed so is everyone else’s time too. We have put together some little tips to help you make sure that your meetings actually have a positive contribution.

  1. First, meet face-to-face (if you can). It isn’t always possible as companies can often have people all across the globe, but when you have the opportunity, do try and meet in person. There really isn’t a substitute for facetime. It is far too easy to let your mind wander when you are in the room… let alone when you aren’t there in person. You would be surprised how important body language is when making decisions and having a productive meeting.
  2. Unplug. Not only are tech tools often distracting but a number of studies have shown that students who use their laptops rather than making old fashioned handwritten notes have a significantly harder time remembering what was said.
  3. Have a plan. Making sure that you actually have a reason to meet is important. Get that reason written down, shared with all attendees. There is no point getting off track, you are having the meeting for a reason, so why not actually focus on that reason instead of meandering your way through an entire morning and achieving nothing.
  4. The guest list. Don’t invite people for the sake of it; try to forget about office politics and only invite the people that really need to be there. We have all been to meetings where we aren’t sure exactly why we are there, it wastes everyone’s time.
  5. Ban or at least limit PowerPoint. PP can be a great tool to AID your meeting, but it shouldn’t dictate your meeting. Nothing is more boring that just watching someone read off sheet clicking through slides with far too much writing in them.
  6. Timing. Get everyone there on time and follow the agenda. Schedule meetings for specific amounts of time as well, if the meeting is going to take 20 minutes, then have a 20-minute meeting. You don’t have to have meetings in multiples of 30 minutes.
  7. Refreshments. Keep everyone well watered, and if it is first thing in the morning, well coffee’d. An alert group will take in more, and make the meeting pass more quickly.
  8. And last but most certainly not least! The environment. Where you have the meeting can make a huge difference to the productivity of that meeting. Natural light, interesting décor and comfortable furniture are just some of the factors that can make or break a meeting. Take a look at one of our favourite rooms for brainstorming meetings here.

Inside Some Of The Worlds Coolest Offices

From some of the most famous brands in the world, to less-known up and coming companies, Zipcube takes a look into their uber cool office spaces.
‘Where you work determines how you work’ and to get the most out of your team, you need to find a space that really inspires them. So if you think your job is boring, these offices will just make you want to go to work every day. Let’s give a look at the coolest workspaces we’ve found:

Airbnb HQ

Airbnb, the online marketplace for unique accommodation, recreates some of their top listings inside the office! The open office style is used to create a relaxed vibe, and this is also the trigger of lots of daily creative brainstorming sessions between co-workers. Employees are provided with super-healthy organic only lunches prepared by the office’s own specialist chef. The premises also boasts a rooftop terrace, which Co-Founder Nate says has held some ‘pretty epic’ events.

Pinterest HQ

This arty company’s HQ promotes a ‘crafty culture’, with an area specially dedicated to ‘coffee and fresh prints’, which lets employees get creative whilst grabbing their latte.

From the real life giant pin board created by workers, to a fully functioning bar, interior ideas from employees are more than welcome by the Pinterest bosses.

BarkBox HQ

BarkBox moves away from the traditional receptionist greeting at their HQ. Instead, technology is the replacement; guests check in via a built in ipad. The company continues this theme, with more ipads in the kitchen so staff can even re-order coffee if they’re running low! The office is also kitted out with anything a dog could need, so now, everyday is bring your pet to work day for BarkBox employees.

Quirky HQ

Quirky’s office is full of fun, and showcases some of worlds coolest inventions. Each item in the office, from stationary and gadgets, to furniture and kitchenware is made by Quirky applicants who are talented inventors hoping for their work to be manufactured by the enterprise. This video’s definitely worth checking out, especially if your not familiar with Quirky’s work.

YouTube HQ

Being the worlds largest video search engine, and one of the most recognisable brands in the world, its no surprise YouTube managed to pull off one of the novel and fun headquarters you’ve ever seen. You’ll see a rock climbing wall, mini golf, and, yes a giant slide!

Etsy HQ

This Brooklyn-based company definitely practices what they preach. Being an online market places for buyers and sellers of vintage and handmade ‘stuff’, their office is full of items off their own website. New staff are even given £100 to spend on the website, pretty cool right?

Why not take a look at www.zipcube.com to see if you can find the perfect workspace or meeting room to make your day as productive as possible. We also list some spectacular event spaces where you to can hold some ‘epic events’. 

 

Passport to Pitchswag

Pitchswag™ is an online incubator bringing together entrepreneurs, investors, experts and co-founders. Annually they organise Passport to Pitchswag – an event where all those people can meet offline to network, pitch ideas, fundraise and invest. Zipcube have been shortlisted for the Passport 2 Pitchswag Pitch competition and we hope you agree that we would be deserving finalists.

In the world where it is hard to ignore the co-working revolution, where 87% of white collar employees of multinational companies conduct at least part of their work virtually people need a good alternative to the traditional office and conference room onsite. People need Zipcube!

We develop, aggregate and operate an online public market and booking service for meeting and event spaces. Most websites are enquiries sites, you have to wait several hours, sometimes days to confirm a booking. We are a game changer in the room hiring industry.

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Zipcube makes it possible to:

Save time. Book, not just enquire.

Save money. Greater choice offers cheaper alternatives.

Stay productive wherever. 

Get all you need. Gain access to the broadest selection of professional spaces. Amazing places for private offices, meeting rooms, event spaces and even photo shoots.

Get the best price. Only pay for the space you use. No contracts or hidden fees. Zipcube assures full price transparency.

Book hassle free. Book confidently by the hour or by the day. You are in control of where, when, and how you want to work or meet.

We are one of the most innovative startups in the silicon roundabout. Our unique international team is really enthusiastic about what we do and this is why we do it so well!

In our first year Zipcube has already won best start up at Thinking Digital and come second from across Europe at the Pirate pitch. We are backed by UKTI, and Ignite100.

Number of our clients is increasing. Searching and booking time is getting shorter and shorter. We’re growing quickly, we want to grow even quicker. The P2P Pitch Competition prize would help us to expand Zipcube revolution UK-wise.

The freshest co-working spaces by BMB Magazine

BMB Magazine compiled the list of the freshest co-working spaces in London. We’re happy to announce that you can book desks and meeting rooms in some of them at zipcube.com.

Central Working – Shoreditch

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Based in the heart of London’s own silicon valley Central Working Shoreditch provides a perfect infrastructure for growing business. The newest Central Working is expected to help over 22,000 digital businesses during the next 5 years which will potentially generate 350 million pounds in combined revenue. Take a part in co-working revolution and get a desk at Central Working!

The Clubhouse London

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A new way of doing business. The Clubhouse is a club and a lounge that provides luxurious co-working space and various meeting rooms. They’re just perfectly based in Mayfair a few minutes walk from Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square, and Green Park underground stations. Are you tempted to grow new professional relationships at The Clubhouse?

Club Workspace – Clrerkenwell Workshops

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They are placed in a walking distance form Holborn and Farrington stations at a charming courtyard with a wonderful bar/cafe. This amazing space already attracted 70 innovative small businesses that made Clerkenwell Workshops their home. Would you like to feel the amazing atmosphere of this place and hire a meeting room at Clerkenwell Workshops?

Innovation at 90 Main Yard

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An old warehouse turned into creative and collaborative environment. There are established businesses as well as startups and freelancers working at 90 Main Yard. What do they have in common? They are all about innovation. There is a link for anyone who fancies working in extremely innovative environment.

The full article in BMB (page 33)

 

5 Tips To Give Your Boring Meetings a Makeover

When was the last time you looked forward to a meeting? The answer is probably never. Meetings have the potential to be both fun and productive, but the majority of them just arenʼt! Time and time again managers fail to hold a successful meeting that gets the best of their team, so we have created a quick go-to guide on how to give your meetings a makeover.

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1. Set an objective – How can you measure the success of a meeting if you donʼt have an objective? Set a realistic overall objective of the meeting and inform the participants of this. Although the overall objective changes each meeting, a staple aim of every meeting should be to leave participants feeling motivated and educated. If both your overall objective, and the staple aim have been fulfilled, then itʼs safe to say the meeting was a success.

2. Plan the agenda – Ask yourself, what topics must be covered in this meeting in order to achieve itʼs objective? Again, inform all participants beforehand of these topics, so they know what to expect and to prepare for. By creating this agenda, you should be able to set the length of time required for the meeting.

3. Choose the best timing – If the meeting is going to require a lot of time, make sure you schedule short breaks to keep participants from becoming disengaged. Try to avoid meeting very early or very late in the day. You may find participants are less productive at the start of the day, and less motivated very late in the day. Therefore, where possible, schedule your meeting somewhere in the middle.

4. Find an aesthetically pleasing meeting space – Research has shown time and time again that the interior of the workplace plays a part in the productivity of employees. A confined and dull space WILL NOT motivate employees. Find a meeting space with plenty of natural light, a bright interior and comfortable seating.

5. Involve everyone and promote creativity – The quietest people can have the best ideas! Be sure to ask for the contribution of ideas, solutions and feedback from EVERYONE. Let them know that their ideas are valued. Donʼt forget to encourage idea sharing amongst the team; a simple idea from one person can be snowballed by others into something great!

So, what do you think? Can we bring the life back to meetings?