Designing for Success: Blending Aesthetics with Functionality in Modern Workspaces

How Professional Coworking Has Evolved

For many reasons, the motive behind creating shared workspaces has evolved rapidly over the last few years. Nowadays, it is available everywhere, a sign of modern times. But where did the idea come from?

The concept was first introduced in the 1990s, driven by the desire for more worker collaboration. A brief overview of the evolution of this flexible approach to work goes like this:

  • The first coworking space was founded by hackers in Berlin and was called c-base and/or Hackerspace. The idea was to share space and knowledge to work on coding projects together. They started adding seminars and social events, which made it more mainstream. By the end of 1995, there were Hackerspace’s in San Francisco, Santa Clara, and Brooklyn.
  • The word coworking was first used by Bernard DeKoven, who referred to it as “working together as equals.” Initially, ‘coworking’ referred to collaboration rather than the space itself.
  • One of the earliest examples of what we consider a coworking space today was displayed in 2002 in Austria. “The mother of coworking spaces”, Schraubenfabrik was built in an old factory in Vienna as a so-called entrepreneurial center that sought to have entrepreneurs and creatives work together, and thrive. 
  • Skipping to 2011, the first Coworking Conference was held in Austin, Texas. Larger companies began exploring different options for coworking spaces, with an emphasis on space design and community. 
  • The New York Times wrote about combining coworking with travel in 2015, thus birthing the concept of the ‘surf office’. This idea spread to many freelance workers worldwide, creating space in the workforce for travelling knowledge workers, now known as digital nomads.
  • Coworking began to bloom and expanded. In 2017 WeWork coworking company grew to become one of the most valuable ‘tech’ companies in the world, alongside Uber and Airbnb. 
  • 2020: The global pandemic hit, removing many workers from their permanent offices. Temporary spaces were also affected as public and private gatherings were limited. With an uncertain future head, many companies began considering cutting costs on permanent offices and replacing them with coworking spaces.
  • The coworking space industry’s adaptability flourished as the pandemic’s ongoing challenges were considered, leading to many notable global expansions of spaces by more than 28% in 2021. 
  • A broader shift in the global workforce due to the pandemic exemplified the need for more decentralized work environments and flexible spaces. Today, it is uniquely relevant to have a workplace that is not only focused on productivity but also on many new elements that fulfill the needs of a modern workforce.


Impact on Work Culture: How Design Influences Productivity and Creativity

The question to ask is how and why. How does design influence productivity? Why does great design lead to greater creativity?

The aesthetics of office spaces have proven to have an effect. How your office is set up right now is likely to either curb or encourage your productivity. Style and design affect our mood in ways we are not usually mindful of.

Creating, organizing, and maintaining an office that supports performance, collaboration, and safety is the foundation of good workspace design. Here is a summary of what to consider when selecting office space and how it influences productivity, according to PeopleKeep:

  • Noise: Choosing a new workspace layout means considering the noise level within the space. Some employees prefer background noise, while others do not. If one runs a company where phones are constantly ringing or multimedia content like podcasts and videos are being recorded, a quiet place is likely required for those who prefer silence. 
  • Privacy: Some employees are more productive when in open-plan offices, while others are not. Some feel uneasy about the lack of privacy within partitionless office environments. This can lead to far less productive interactions with their coworkers. According to a recent survey conducted by, 52% of employees favour more traditional private offices, while 28% prefer open-plan offices. Striking a balance between the two is the art of good coworking design with concepts like transparent glass barriers between offices, which create private spaces while feeling open, as well as strategically placed barriers, furniture or plants to create natural privacy. 
  • Flexibility: Giving employees a sense of freedom and flexibility is one of the most surefire ways to boost productivity. You can nurture a workplace environment that prioritizes employee well-being and boosts staff satisfaction by providing adjustable and ergonomic furniture, lighting and temperature control options, and an option of open or private workspace.

Here is the further impact of design on productivity according to Space Matrix:

  • Boosts Creativity: An aesthetically appealing office can stimulate the mind and inspire new ideas; including bright colours, unique artwork, and sleek, modern designs  can encourage employees to think outside the box. Stanza Living is a leader in co-living spaces and has created a startup space with a running ticker that displays real-time milestone achievements in a central location for maximum visibility. This approach no doubt inspires employees. 
  • Enhances Mood: A good or bad mood can make or break a work day. Dull workspaces create a dull mood. An appealing space can uplift employees and increase their energy.  
  • Increases Focus: Distractions are a common workplace problem, reducing productivity and job satisfaction. An aesthetically appealing, uncluttered workspace helps workers stay focused and engaged. Here at The Professional Centre (TPC), we provide a combination of linear and agile workstations, which include open breakout spaces and movable furniture for formal and informal meetings. The various options allow company members to focus on whatever environment suits them best. 
  • Improves Employee Satisfaction: Employee satisfaction is vital for productivity. Positive and engaging environments can be created through smart, inspired design.


The Design Philosophy Behind TPC

The interplay between a space’s design and its functionality is crucial, especially in a workspace. As we’ve touched on before, the demand for coworking spaces—by SMBs, large remote companies, startups, and freelancers—is on the rise. These diverse groups require environments that not only support their work but enhance it, transforming potential friction points into seamless, fluid experiences. Whether it’s the solitary worker who finds solace in silence or the dynamic individual who draws energy from the ambient hum of an open-plan setting, top-tier coworking spaces like ours are designed to cater to every preference.

Here’s a glimpse into how TPC marries efficiency and functionality with an ambiance that’s both sophisticated and inviting:

Features Spotlight: Unique design elements in our spaces

  1. Private Offices
    Thoughtfully considered details are at the core of the private suites. Style, space, and privacy have been shown to enhance productivity. Natural light, along with state-of-the-art technical equipment and ergonomic, comfortable seating. While renting the private offices, the clients are privileged to on-demand services and use of amenities, including meeting rooms, collaboration zones, and a spacious business longue, all infused with flexible accommodations. All executive suites can be customized to suit a client’s unique requirements.
  2. Meeting Rooms
    Like private offices, there is an assortment of meeting room options, ranging from various quantities of seating, display options, table shapes, and room sizes. Prices will vary, with available wifi, natural light, whiteboards, flip charts, and a 50-inch TV monitor available, depending upon the selection.
  3. On-Demand Offices
    On-demand offices are offered on a pay-as-you-need basis that aids freelance workers and companies in escaping from working from home without a long-term commitment. Days or weeks can be booked, with fully furnished rooms, accommodations like fully stocked kitchens, and a professional on-site staff that can aid in administrative and technical support.
  4. Virtual Offices
    The benefits of TPC can still be enjoyed by booking virtual offices. Those who work remotely or run an online business can use the Downton Toronto mailing address and professional telephone searches. These services include a 416 number and voicemail, personalized telephone answer, after-hours answering services, and transfer of calls to a remote number.


Looking Forward: The Next Wave of Design Innovations in Coworking Spaces

The horizon for design innovation within coworking spaces is not only bright but perpetually dynamic. These advancements are inextricably linked to the pioneering efforts of architects and interior designers, who are at the forefront of creating environments that seamlessly marry comfort with productivity. 

The emphasis is increasingly on incorporating ergonomic furniture, optimizing lighting, managing noise levels, and curating aesthetically appealing spaces. Here are several forward-thinking strategies employed to infuse modern design elements into collaborative workspaces:

  1. Embracing Nature: The tranquillity nature brings to the mind is undeniable, significantly boosting long-term productivity. Introducing elements like indoor plants, fresh flowers, or serene water features can create an atmosphere that not only soothes but also enhances a brand’s overall vibe.
  2. Strategic Color Use: The psychological impact of colours on mood is well-documented, making colour strategy essential in workspace design. Employing colours that inspire — such as the calming influence of blue to foster concentration, or the energizing effect of yellow to spur creativity — can transform the work environment.
  3. Incorporating Art: Art has the power to personalize and deinstitutionalize a workspace, making it feel more inviting and less mechanical. Opting for art that aligns with the company’s culture and values — be it through vibrant murals, inspiring sculptures, or thought-provoking paintings — adds depth and character.
  4. Innovative Lighting Solutions: Lighting’s impact on mood and productivity cannot be overstated. Investing in a mix of bright and soft lighting that harmonizes with both the natural and built environment of the workspace is crucial. The right lighting strategy can significantly uplift an employee’s mood and, by extension, enhance their productivity levels.

These design innovations represent just the beginning. They underscore a commitment to not only meet the evolving needs of coworking members but also exceed them, setting new standards for what a productive, comfortable, and inspiring workspace can be.

Professional coworking has undergone a remarkable evolution, proving that spaces designed with both beauty and practicality in mind are essential for inspiring innovation and fostering community. So, as we embrace this new era of workplace design, let’s commit to creating environments that empower, engage, and elevate us all.

Ready to elevate your workday? Discover our flexibly designed and fully managed workspace solutions that blend form with function, crafted for your success.

Coworking Community Building: A Blueprint for Professional Collaboration and Networking in 2024

Unveiling Innovative Strategies for Nurturing Dynamic Workplace Communities

There is a reason that coworking spaces continue to focus more and more on the community element. Community is in many ways, vital to the success of a workplace space. There are many ways in which this has been shown, where individuals contributing to a work task not only thrive within the company as a whole but also within their own goals. Here are some of the most obvious benefits:

  • Networking Opportunities: Coworking spaces bring different professionals together, all of whom are a small portion of diverse backgrounds, skill sets, and industries. These spaces allow people to meet others with different interests and skills, thus expanding the potential for professional relationships. They can also connect with others who can provide assistance and advice. Learning from each other is a key benefit to operating within a community-driven space. 
  • Support Systems: Everyone needs a support system to encourage them through tough times, and that includes within the professional realm. Support systems within coworking spaces can create a sense of belonging, especially with like-minded people who are pursuing similar goals. 
  • Community Events: Often hosting community events that enhance networking opportunities. These events help freelance and independent professionals connect, learn, and grow from others who are similar or even dissimilar from themselves. Social events create a sense of belonging and are good for those who are used to working alone, curating a fun, enjoyable environment. 
  • Collaboration: There is a plethora of opportunities for collaboration, whether it be formally, or informally collaboration leads to new ideas and even newer possible business opportunities. Various fields can combine their differing skills and create fresh ideas that may not have existed outside the coworking community zone. 
  • Flexibility: Coworking spaces, compared to traditional office spaces, allow much more flexibility concerning when, how, and where individuals work. Flexibility is beneficial for those working a non-traditional job or schedule. This makes for an appealing option for growing businesses or small teams. 

Based on historical data from 2018 through 2022, the total number of coworking spaces is set to reach nearly 42,000 worldwide by the end of 2024. The coworking industry is flourishing, but the ones that stick around place a sense of community at the top of their list. 


Innovative Strategies: Workshops, Networking Events, and Collaborative Projects

There are many ways that a member company can begin growing its individualized sense of community within a flexible shared workspace. But you might not know exactly where to start, outside finding a space that is intuitively collaborative, so here are some tips: 

  1. Introduce New Members: Send out welcoming packets, plan introductory coffee sessions, create a buddy system with a seasoned member for a week, or create a community wall where new members’ photos and a short bio are displayed. Remember, some people take a bit to open up, while some are outgoing from the get-go. Be patient, and offer a multitude of welcoming gestures that make each individual feel uniquely appreciated and comfortable.
  2. Organize Events: Planning events like workshops, yoga sessions, and Friday night music jams is an additional step in drawing members together. Flexible Workspaces often offer to manage several of these events for member companies and you can also host your own events within the space dedicated to your team privately. Best of all the space can usually help you manage your own private events so ask! 
  3. Share Brand Stories: Every brand has a unique origin story—share yours with both your new staff and your extended workspace member community, inviting them into your world. Tactical examples include hosting brand-themed storytelling events becoming the community host, or initiating the building of an interactive visual narrative for all members on a dedicated wall in the space.
  4. Connect People: Match together people who you think can create magic together tapping into the broader talent pool from other member companies. Use coffee breaks, lunches, or even during a networking event to introduce an individual who you think could benefit from the introduction. Of course, this is also a benefit you can personally enjoy. Use access to the member directly to full advantage in order to discover natural alliances, sales opportunities, partnerships or friendships. 
  5. Balance Needs and Expectations: People are inherently different. Companies are figuring out that key differences between workers mean that the management style and approach toward maintaining a healthy work environment is going to differ from person to person. That is what makes coworking spaces so valuable; their flexibility with environment, amenities, recreation, lighting, climate control, and ergonomic comfort. For your own company also stay flexible and avoid applying a one-size-fits-all approach to leverage the space to your company’s advantage. 


Future Trends: Predictions for Coworking Communities

The future of coworking looks exceedingly bright. Here are a few predictions for 2024 and beyond, according to workplace solutions:

  1. Go Green, Stay Green: Sustainability isn’t just a trend anymore; it is the way of the future, as is the addition of wellness initiatives. Mediation rooms, fitness corners, and access to nearby parks will become the norm, along with composting facilities, solar panels, and rainwater harvesting.
  2. Hospitality Hubs: Providing up-to-date amenities has already proven to enhance worker satisfaction, and premium coworking spaces are going to continue to innovate, leading the industry. Gourmet coffee and tea, artisanal snacks, onsite gyms with fitness classes, childcare, and even pet-friendly zones are becoming more common.
  3. AI Presence, but not Takeover: Technology will continue to advance, with automated booking systems and AI-powered meeting assistants that take notes while humans brainstorm. That being said a human, genuine connection continues to be wanted and needed.
  4. No More Niche: A one-size-fits-all approach is gone. Coworking spaces are more than willing to tailor to specific industries, like fashion designers who need on-site garment racks, or music producers who need soundproof recording studios. 
  5. Creativity Soars: Vibrant coworking spaces are now being curated to aid in enhancing creativity. This means capturing client’s attention and imagination – think in-house chefs, pop-up art galleries, and rooftop yoga!
  6. Flexibility First: As we have seen, flexibility is the way of the future when it comes to shared workspace. The pandemic was the catylist and we work is forever changed. Flexible design for a modern hybrid workforce will only continue to thrive.
  7. Tech Up: Spaces continue to invest in cutting-edge, like temperature sensors that adjust automatically, noise-canceling booths for those who need more focus, and even AR/VR waiting rooms to entertain members and their guests. Holograms are no longer science-fiction and have become science-fact.


The Professional Centre’s Approach: Tailoring Community-Building to Professionals

Unlike a traditional office space, which was often closed off with limited interaction between workers, The Professional Centre is designed with a mix of sophisticated private and open layouts for maximum customization and access to a suite of amenities. Sophisticated suites with natural sunlight and varying options in workspaces. A summary of the spaces we offer, as well as the amenities that contribute to the sense of community, are as follows:

  • Private Offices: While prioritizing privacy, access to private offices for solo work also includes tastefully sleek and designed meeting rooms and collaboration zones. 
  • Meeting Rooms: Inspiring meeting rooms that range in various sizes, all with a dynamic setup designed with collaboration and relationship building in mind. Sleek and modernly ergonomic furniture creates a soft and welcoming ambiance that accommodates working styles. 
  • Enterprise Offices: Entire offices can be booked and tailored to specific company needs, all with community and collaboration in mind. Pick from three separate options that blend private offices with transparent dividers, coworking spaces, executer window offices, and optimally open meeting rooms. 
  • On-Demand Offices: On-demand offices at TPC offer the flexibility previously mentioned that enhances the notion of community and collaboration. Pay-as-you-need offices release the stress of permanent office maintenance, whether it is required for a day, a week, or even a month. 
  • Community Amenities & Concierge Support: From a fully stocked up and snacked-out kitchen, to quiet meditation or prayer spaces, to spacious lounges, to an experienced technical and administrative team, TPC acts as a muse for businesses looking to enhance their sense of community. 


Here are a few success stories and testimonials from companies who have found The Professional Centre’s community coworking space to be conducive to their company mandate:

“It’s a complete turnkey solution. The Professional Centre provides everything that we need to run our office and also gives us access to the kind of equipment that we could never afford to have on our own.”
Stephen Griggs, Executive Director – Canadian Coalition for Good Governance

“Whether it is the phone answering service that creates the presence of Iomega as a credible entity to its customers; the professional administrative support that is provided on an ongoing basis, or the tastefully designed and well-provisioned boardrooms, which have been instrumental in cementing contracts and relationships — all contribute to a truly professional atmosphere and pleasurable working environment.” Wally Schmidt, Manager – Canada Iomega

“Nikki and the team at The Professional Centre have been incredible in helping us get our Toronto team started. The tenure of her support team and their expertise has helped us win both clients and hire the best senior individuals. The fact that The Professional Centre also has a very long tenure of tenants/clients shows that the level and quality of service has remained high for many years.”
Sheldon North, Corporate Affairs – BGC Engineering Inc.

Located in the heart of Toronto’s downtown financial district, The Professional Centre (TPC), is committed to aligning with evolving work dynamics with high performance professionals.  Take advantage of our location to lower your operational costs while enjoying the vibrancy of a community that thrives on innovation and collaboration. 

Explore TPC’s flexibly designed and fully managed workspace solutions here. 

The Future of Work: Navigating the Post-Pandemic World

How COVID-19 Catalyzed a Shift Towards Flexible Work Environments and What It Means for Productivity, Culture, and Connection in 2023 and Beyond

Everyone will remember the day differently: time stood still as stores closed early, businesses shut down, and everyone was sent home. Something that even the World Health Organization understood was coming. And it would change every aspect of our lives for the foreseeable future.

Now, after more than three years since that fateful day, we are still adjusting to what it means to be living and thriving in a post-pandemic world. Many people had to switch careers due to the uncertainty of their particular stream of interests, like restaurant workers and those in the entertainment industry. And those who worked in office settings were eventually guided back but in a new, virtual manner.

Working from home (or WFH as it became colloquially known) quickly became the go-to option for businesses when the uncertainty of the pandemic raged. From marketing and ad agencies to bank programming, everyone began to wake up and hop online after slipping on their robe and slippers, rather than commuting into a separate location where their coworkers and bosses were present. It was a choice many companies made thoughtfully, and mainly, out of desperation to avoid economic disintegration.

The result was staggeringly positive, in favour of the WFH choice that was made across the globe for companies who were able to transfer day-to-day procedures into a home environment. Before COVID-19, the concept of a work-life balance was popular, especially regarding WFH. It was something discussed and considered but was rather abstract and nebulous. It was only when it was a forced situation that work traditionalists started to earmark its enriching possibilities.

When you think about working from home, you are reminded of common issues that might arise, which are the same reasons why an out-of-home office soars. Workers in the past lacked structure and could not separate behaviors associated with being at home vs. being at work. Work, as an environment and space, isn’t just defined as a place where you get your specifically delineated ‘work’ and leave. It is an area where people mingle, explore relationships, brainstorm, support, and educate. Many of the fears about working from home came from the potential lack of this socialization and general overhead observation of workflow.

But their success rate was measured during the height of COVID-19 and the influx of WFH workers depended upon a single factor worth focused consideration: Productivity. A study done in 2022 had 77% of workers claiming to be more productive when working from home, while 83% of companies saw an increase in productivity when instituting work-from-home policies. It wasn’t flawless, depending upon the work and their specific life situation. For example, those with children tended to be more distracted as they tended to their needs. But at the same time, nothing would be stopping them from logging onto work if some quiet time reared its head. 

These work-from-home options continue to exist as the effects of the pandemic wane. Organizations and companies are cautiously optimistic as vaccines were curated, laws designating social bubble sizes and mask-wearing disappeared, along with contagious variants. There have been upticks of cases and steady declines since, but the panic has largely subsided.

So here’s the question: what do companies who have adjusted to work-from-home policies do now, after nearly three years of putting a whole new practice in place? 

As previously mentioned, it would be fruitful for companies to largely remain the same, as they have seen the success rates of productivity and recognize how unstable our modern world can be. According to Randstad after surveying work-from-home workers in Canada, as of June 2021, 50% of employees were working from home. In the following year spring 2022, while restrictions broadly eased, 46% were in the same situation. The numbers are slightly different depending on the industry, but overall, they remain the same, into 2023.

Many of the pros of working from home outweighed the cons for people who worked for over two years from their home base rather effectively. It’s a trend that continues, and has even been crowned the ‘future of employment’. Parents no longer had to commute or hire babysitters when their children were sick. People could make their schedule, and thus possessed more energy and focus when it came time to get work done.

We are still then left with the question of the best option for 2023, with herd immunity established and no new, alarming pandemic follow-on wave in sight. While it will all depend upon the industry your company falls under, there is a general notion of cost-benefit analysis that covers your considerations. 

Before we look at the available options for modern workers in 2023, let’s take a look at the benefits and challenges of homework according to Forbes 2023 Survey trends: 



—57% of workers would look for a new job if their current company didn’t allow remote work: This shows how important flexible hours have become to workers when COVID-19 forced them into their homes. 

—35% of remote employees feel more productive when working fully remote: as previously mentioned, it is the flexibility that allows many workers to thrive; less commute, more energy, and the ability to tailor their work environment suitable for their needs.

—65% report wanting to work remotely all the time: The work model had swelled in popularity. 32% prefer a hybrid modern, which will be discussed later, but blends and highlights the benefits of the two options.

—71% of remote workers said remote work helps balance their work and personal life: Work-life balance is no longer elusive. Remote work has allowed workers to see the value of both aspects of their lives, and because of it, has been chiefly an overall success. (Note that 12% reported that remote work hurt their work-life balance so keep that in mind.)



69% of remote workers report increased burnout from digital communication tools: Increased access to workers in the digital age wasn’t beneficial to everyone. Because of all our technological advancements, there are multiple ways in which a manager or coworkers can reach out and pull work back into the work zone. This underscores the need for work boundaries and wellness strategies, which are relatively new today.

—53% of remote workers say it’s harder to feel connected to their coworkers: Lacking socialization became a problem for many people when the pandemic hit. For those who went to work every day and interacted with their coworkers, their connections seemed to plummet significantly. This highlights the need for effective communication strategies in a remote and digital environment.


There is still so much employers are learning from the work-from-home model compared to the traditional work environment model. As you can see, there are several challenges, but there are also several benefits. For many companies and organizations that want to take advantage of the WFH trend and maintain employee connection, collaboration, and general morale, a third option has reared its head: the hybrid work model.

The hybrid model of working is exactly as it sounds. It takes the best from both worlds and blends them into one unit of productivity and workplace contentment. It is going to depend upon your business needs as to whether or not you will make one a priority over the other or keep the two equally considered. Some companies will thrive better in a collaborative environment, while others will do better with dispersed freedom. Some will take both and run with it.

If it is a matter of not wanting to add the substantial expense of a permanent workspace, there are many viable options available in this modern age. These will also be the most viable options for your company because many professionals no longer apply for jobs that do not offer remote work at least some of the time. 


Flexible Office Space and the Hybrid Model: the Future of the WorkForce

Many new terms are emerging when applying hybrid work vs. traditional work. The first is that of the flexible office space, which is an umbrella term that essentially refers to various workplace environments and operations where multiple businesses are operating within the same facility. The term is associated with several other terms that can be interpreted as follows: 

—Cowoerking Spaces: Arrangements of offices where freelancers and employees from different businesses and organizations work alongside each other in a shared workspace. 

—Executive suites: These areas are usually more private than coworking spaces. Usually, whole offices or even whole floors are rented for a certain amount of time where workers from the same organization and/or company work alongside one another. Different organizations will share the same building and amenities. We at the Professional Centre fall under this category. 

—Incubators and accelerators: These spaces are usually made up of two or more variations of the flexible office spaces. They are similar to work coworking spaces but are generally geared toward the niche of technology startups and providing support services and coaching to help their clients grow as opposed to the often more established or at least independent companies you typically find in other workspaces. 


These flexible office spaces often overlap with another concept known as activity-based working. These forgo a dedicated work space for each employee and rather, offer a variety of spaces optimized for particular activities. This allows employees to move around as needed, working wherever they feel is crucial at a given time.

The Independent reports a trend of 30% of offices being rented on a flex-basis by the year 2030. Without question, these trends indicate that the concept of the rental space and the hybrid work model is the future wave. If you want to apply a hybrid model to your own business, balancing out remote work with in-office collaboration, all while saving money and limiting your company’s carbon footprint, these modern options are now readily available to you. There has been a boom in them ever since COVID disrupted and will continue to alter our old concepts for work. 

Certain companies are, of course, going to benefit more immediately from certain kinds of work environments. For example, The Professional Centre, here in downtown Toronto, offers a variety of options with the goal of exceeding our client’s expectations for comfort, style, and flexibility. TPC’s private offices are offered for small to enterprise-level teams on either a mid-term, month-to-month, or on-demand basis. We also provide access to flexibly booked meeting rooms and collaboration zones. Additionally, we offer a spacious lounge and kitchen, a meditation or prayer room, an exercise area, an indoor bike rack, and shower rooms. We also include full reception and mail support for all members. 

And while the concept of the hybrid model continues to thrive into 2024 and beyond, virtual elements for interaction will continue to be applied. For this, The Professional Centre offers virtual office space options, where a business address and mailbox for deliveries can be rented, and a dedicated business telephone number with our receptionist can accept calls. and a host of additional executive concierge support services. This works well for remote first and WFH businesses wanting a professional image and the ability to optionally at any point upgrade to office or collaboration spaces as their needs evolve.

In summary, maintaining productivity, culture, and workforce connection is a delicate balance, but thankfully, there are many more options available in 2023, and they will continue to evolve as we professionals do. This is the silver lining of the global event that changed our lives: hybrid work is here to stay. Through the use of a flexible office, or a virtual space, combined with a flexible company policy, there is no doubt that you and your company and your staff will thrive.

At The Professional Centre, we are dedicated to providing our members with the necessary resources for success. Our offerings include top-notch amenities like high-speed WiFi, keyless access, and 24/7 video surveillance, carefully curated to foster comprehensive growth opportunities.

The Professional Centre, situated in Toronto, Ontario, offers the added advantage of allowing members to claim their rental fees as deductible expenses. This strategic move reduces tax liability and ensures a more favourable financial position.


Rethinking your organization’s meeting space or workspace? Discover our flexibly designed and fully managed workspace solutions.



How to Navigate Returning to the Office

When COVID-19 first hit and cities issued stay-at-home orders, everyone’s major concern was whether or not they could adjust to a life of isolation. “It will be over soon, right?” was the universal phrase being uttered worldwide across virtual meetings and calls, over the course of March and April. 

Now however, months into this new normal, we have all adapted (to varying degrees) to a world in which the pandemic is not yet over, but in which we are all learning to exist alongside it. As we enter Fall, cities have been lifting restrictions, businesses are being allowed to reopen, and companies are looking to call their employees back to the office. Many individuals and entrepreneurs are also looking into finding designated workspaces again. 

Though we cannot predict the future, it is likely that cities will remain open to a certain extent despite the pandemic and with these changes in the air and the number of cases fluctuating, many have renewed concerns about what returning to work and the public world is going to look like. It is a stress called “re-entry anxiety” – a combination of fear of exposure to the outside world and health-related anxiety about COVID-19.

For many, this fear arises in the context of having to return to the office. There is so much more uncertainty that exists in our new world and people are going to have to learn how to navigate it, especially as the working world begins to open its doors again. Managing public transport, using public facilities, and how to share space with colleagues again can be nerve wracking to say the least.

Many companies are looking to call their employees back to the office, even within the uncertainty of the pandemic, and it’s understandable why. For those who work in creative industries, it has become much harder to create space for collaboration and unplanned brainstorming when all of your meetings are virtual. We are all waiting for lulls, muting and unmuting our microphones to speak only when the opportunity presents itself – much like our younger selves raising hands in class. Due to these limitations, certain fields of work need a communal space to come together to produce their best work. 

Another reason is that companies are going to face larger organizational commitments with prolonged remote work. Now that we are months on from the start of this whole endeavor, companies will have to start looking into restructuring their performance and accountability indicators if remote work goes on for much longer. 

Having an entirely remote team calls for different arrangements and this feat may not be possible for some organizations. We have seen multiple accounts of cybersecurity threats in the virtual work world and the financial cost of tech support, cybersecurity software, and hardware for a distributed team can be too much for some businesses. 

Company culture is also a common loss that is being talked about during the pandemic – many employees have lost their sense of their work culture and sense of belonging.  They are not getting the small interactions and happy exchanges with their colleagues that help them feel like they are a part of a collective. With this new sense of isolation added to the physical separation, companies are looking to help their employees come together again.

However, returning to the office is not just a company-level desire. If you are not one of the people who are being asked to return to the office, you may still be interested in returning to a workplace again. We know that many people are struggling with remote work, especially when it does not have an end in sight for some. With crowded home spaces, childcare obligations, and small apartments, a lot of people are finding it harder to work from home every day. 

Mental health is a universal worry and many are finding that their productivity and morale are continuing to decline with remote work. Whether you are being asked to return to the office or you are looking into finding a workspace outside of your home, re-entry anxiety is a normal feeling in 2020. That said, there is a lot you can do to help yourself transition back into the workplace. 


What to do?


Know What Is Safe:

Follow the guidelines put in place by your respective government. Take note of how many people can be in one space at a time and remember to wear a mask when you are indoors or when you cannot physically distance from others. Try your best not to touch your face and mask, while also cleaning your hands frequently with hand sanitizer or soap. Try to stay 6 ft away from others when possible and make sure the people around you are also abiding by the guidelines.


Know Your Boundaries:

If you are worried about branching out of your routine, it is important to figure out what your boundaries are prior to making changes. What would it look like for you to go somewhere? What are your limits? If you go somewhere and there are too many people not abiding by the guidelines, will you leave? If someone sits next to you on public transit, will you move? Being sure of your boundaries prior to trying to make changes will help ease some of the uncertainty. Knowing what to do if you are uncomfortable gives you an instant plan of action.


Understand the Difference; Deliberate Risk vs. Uncontrollable Risk:

Going to work is a necessity, either because your employer is asking for it or for your own productivity and wellbeing. This is uncontrollable risk and it is accepted because essentially everyone is potentially exposed to COVID-19 at some point in their daily life. Whether that be from going to the grocery store or going to work, it is okay to explore the realm of uncontrollable risk as this is learning to live in our new normal.

Deliberate risk is different and can be exemplified by not wearing a mask when expected to or going to large gatherings with numbers higher than the allowed limit. Differentiating between the two can help you come to terms with branching out of your comfort zone and trying new things. As long as you are being safe and following the guidelines set by your government, it is okay to increase what you are exposed to.


Check in with your Employer/Workspace:

If you are being asked to come into the office, make sure you know what the new protection protocols are. What is your employer or office provider doing to keep you safe? What is the protocol when someone is feeling ill? Know what safety measures are in place and what the rules are being implemented. This will keep you as safe as possible and also help in regulating everyone else’s behaviour. 

Flexible workspaces, such as The Professional Centre, have implemented new safety measures for both individual entrepreneurs and company offices to ensure their space is as safe to use as possible.

If you are an individual who is looking for a designated workspace away from home, sitting in a café right now may not be an option. You cannot control the actions of every person who walks in off the street and with physical distancing measures in place, you cannot guarantee you will always find a spot. One option is to look into renting a desk at a flexible workspace provider. Flexible workspaces are safe and controlled workspaces with rules and procedures that will help you adjust and give you a secure space to work in.


Small Steps:

We are definitely not suggesting that on your first try you get on the subway, go to the office, take a cab, go shopping, and have dinner at a restaurant. That would make anyone feel overloaded! It is important to break up your tasks and set small goals. If going back to the office is a priority, start with going in a few times a week. Test your limits and see what you can manage. 

The first few tries may be difficult and you may experience moments in which you feel unsafe, but it will eventually become easier. You will get more comfortable with each day you try, and the more you get used to, the more you will be able to do (all while being as safe as possible). Remember that it is not all or nothing – this is the long haul.


Start Sooner Rather Than Later:

The longer you put it off, the larger the anxiety and fears will become. We all have to adapt to this new normal and everyone is going at their own pace, so try to implement new small experiences every few days. This will build up your emotional tolerance to new experiences.


Do Not Rely on Crutches:

Do not start substituting your anxiety for a crutch. This means staying away from substances like alcohol, nicotine, and drugs. These can lead to prolonged mood imbalances and can contribute to actually feeling more anxiety in the long term. 

Finally, remember that you will make it through this. Humans are incredibly resilient and adaptable and that includes yourself. Remember when you thought prolonged quarantine was unheard of? You did it and you will find that it is the same with returning to the office. Every day, the fear and anxiety will lessen, and you will start to adapt to our new normal. Everyone is in this together and we will all find new ways to exist and evolve while the pandemic continues.


Rethinking your organization’s workspace? Discover our flexibly designed and fully managed enterprise office solutions.

Coworking vs. Traditional Office Space


team in open office setting

Coworking vs. traditional office space. Which one is right for you?

In today’s office rental market, people have more choices than ever when it comes to finding a home for their business. Along with more choices, there’s an increased awareness among businesses of all sizes of alternative ways to occupy office space. Even large companies like Amazon and Google are diverting some of their offices from traditional leased buildings to flexible workspace. This has resulted in an increase in requests for 10-plus desks which now make up of approximately one-fifth of the total office market demand.

Coworking vs. traditional office space – weighing the pros and cons

For start-ups and established businesses alike, making decisions about office space is no easy task. There are so many options to consider and factors to weigh. Before you begin your search for your enterprise’s home base, it’s critical to determine what you’re looking for: Are you going to go with a coworking space or a traditional office? Let’s consider the top merits – and drawbacks – of each.


Contrary to what some people may still think, coworking is not just a group office with ping pong tables, bean bag chairs and an unlimited supply of snacks. Instead, it is now an umbrella term used to describe a flexible work environment, whether it’s a dedicated desk in a communal space or a private serviced office within a shared office location.



One of the most important benefits of coworking is its flexibility as compared to traditional offices.

You don’t have to commit to a long-term lease and everything – including utilities, phone line, internet, postal service and reception – is normally covered in your fee. Flexible lease options provide a less rigid form of tenure such as the ability to use the space on a short-term basis and to grow or shrink your physical space requirements as needed. Larger companies or established clients can also negotiate longer-term leases – providing the ultimate balance of stability and cost-effectiveness. In short, coworking (ironically) can potentially offer a more tailor-made solution when it comes to lease and space requirements.

Move-in ready

You can occupy your fully-equipped space right away. It comes with furnishings, internet and phone connections, plus a variety of amenities and on-demand meeting space arrangements.

Chances to network and collaborate

Shared spaces mean you have the opportunity to join forces with people with complementary skills and/or people who require your skills.


It may not be your space alone

Coworking locations are normally filled with a range of clientele, from startups to multinationals. This means the coworking space cannot be branded by any one client. However, while most coworking locations are shared, more and more it’s possible for one organization to occupy the whole premises. These “enterprise tenant” arrangements allow companies to reap the many benefits of coworking without sacrificing their autonomy and unique company brand and culture.

More expensive than working from home: For the solopreneur or small business, nothing beats the cost-effectiveness of working from home. Moving to a coworking location may cost more, but you’ll likely be way more productive!


Traditional offices

When you lease or buy a traditional office, it’s your own space, to be used exclusively for your business. If you’re renting the office, you usually have to commit to a term of at least five years and enter into a contract with the owner of the premises. Building out and furnishing the offices is also your responsibility.


Branding and corporate culture: The entire office is yours and can reflect your brand and your corporate culture. You can design your space to accommodate the unique needs and values of your company.

Privacy: Because you aren’t sharing the space, it may be easier to schedule private meetings. You will also have better overall control of allotment of designated areas for privacy.


Less flexibility: Leasing a traditional office usually represents a long-term commitment.

Upfront costs: When you lease a traditional office, you will have to furnish and equip your space. This may also include expensive investments like building out amenities and meeting rooms.

The need for dedicated office management: You’ll have to take on the task of managing the office.

Fewer opportunities to network and collaborate: You have less of a chance of connecting with people from other companies or industries.

After you’ve thought about these pros and cons, remember to take a step back and look at the big picture. Make sure the physical space you choose reflects the image you want to project for your clients, potential employees and partners, and the type of business you’re in.

The Professional Centre (TPC) is a premium shared office space in Toronto’s Financial District. Our spaces are fully equipped with meeting rooms and services to meet the needs of any business. Book a tour today and discover the TPC difference!

Are Headphones Bad for Shared Office Spaces | Toronto Coworking Tips

Headphones have become part of the unofficial uniform of Toronto’s shared office workers. But in spaces designed for collaboration, are headphones putting back up the walls that coworking spaces tore down?

Many offices have converted into open plans or rent shared office spaces specifically to increase communication. So, what kind of effect does isolating equipment, like headphones, have on engagement and collaboration?

In this Toronto Coworking Tips article, we’re weighing the pros and cons of headphones in shared office space.


Pros of Headphones in the Office

If you walk into just about any coworking space in Toronto, you’ll find a sea of AirPods, earbuds, and over-ear headphones. At first glance, it can look like everyone is on their own island in an open space, but most employees are quick to defend the use, and they have some strong points.



With so much going on, it can be easy to lose focus in a shared office space. When you’re struggling to concentrate, you can’t close a door and shut the world out. Headphones, however, offer an easy solution.

Throwing on your headphones and putting on some music or relaxing sounds can have powerful effects on concentration. According to a Stanford study, “Music moves [the] brain to pay attention.”

Listening to music while focusing on a task has several benefits, especially with improving focus. It can also help with relaxation and memory.

The type of music has a significant impact. Different types of music can have different benefits. For instance, in the Cambridge Brain Science study Psychomusicology: Music, Mind and Brain, it was determined that low arousal, negative music has the best memory performance.

For improving concentration and productivity, the best options are classical music and EDM music. However, the most important factor is listening to music that you like. Music that you don’t like is distracting.


Do Not Disturb

In a coworking office, you’re always available. This is good most of the time, maximizing your ability to engage and collaborate. It’s very team-friendly, but it’s not always individual-friendly.

Being constantly available can be a challenge when you need to buckle down and hammer out some individual work. For some, this constant openness can lead to some stress. In both cases, headphones act as instant relief.

Wearing headphones in a shared office space is a visible “do not disturb” sign, letting your coworkers know you’re busy and don’t want to be disturbed. If you are immediately needed, people can still access you, but most people let you get on with your work.


Block Out Distractions

Walls are bad for teamwork and collaboration. But what they are good for, is blocking out distractions. In an open office space, it’s easy to get distracted by other conversations and happenings.

From time to time, distractions can be a nice mental break. But if they happen all day long, it’s hard to get much done. It can be hard to get privacy in a coworking space.

Once again, this is where headphones come to save the day. Throwing on your headphones, especially noise cancelling or noise isolating ones are a great way to block out distractions. They can block out loud phone calls and help keep your attention from going too far outward.


Cons of Headphones in the Office

At risk of causing stirring up treble with the headphone wearers, there are some potential downsides as well.


They’re Anti-Social

When a business decides to rent a shared office space or switches to an open office plan, it does so for a reason. They’re counting on the proven collaboration and productivity of a coworking space. 

Putting on your headphones takes away from that atmosphere. It removes you from the community and detracts from team-building and open discussion. As good as they are for individual work, headphones are a detriment during collaboration.


They Can Be Distracting

The distraction argument cuts both ways for headphone use. Some music or ambient sounds can have benefits, increasing focus and promoting calmness. But that’s not all we listen to on headphones.

While there are lots of types of music that can run in the background, ebooks and podcasts are becoming increasingly popular. As titillating as it is to catch up on the latest serial killer podcasts, they aren’t doing anything to improve your concentration, productivity, or attention.


So, are Headphones Good for Coworking?

Really, it comes down to how you use them. There’s a lot of potential benefit to using headphones in a shared office space. Still, if you wear them all day, you lose valuable aspects of the teamwork and collaboration that makes coworking so powerful.

Sticking to music over podcasts or ebooks, and not keeping your headphones on all day, can help you remain a productive, engaged, and focused member of your team.


Find Shared Office Space Rentals in Toronto

The Professional Centre is a premium shared office space in Toronto’s Financial District. Our spaces are fully equipped with meeting rooms and services to meet the needs of any business.

Book a tour today and discover the TPC difference!

9 Tips To Stay Motivated As A Remote Worker

Remote work has exploded over the last decade. As a digitally dominated workplace unchains workers from traditional workspaces, this trend has become the norm. And the growth is increasing exponentially.

Back in 2012, 39% of full-time workers worked remotely at least once per week. By 2018, that number rose to 70%.

Data Source: CNBC

The above stats don’t include self-employed workers or contractors. Even enterprise companies are renting coworking and remote office spaces. Remote work is convenient, affordable, and effective. And this trend is only expected to see continued growth. Especially with Toronto’s difficult market for office rental space.

We take a look at how to keep motivated as a remote worker:


9. Have A Routine

Whether you’re working at home or simply without direct supervision, procrastination is a big temptation. While remote work is proven to be more productive, it can be harder to get your day started.

Stanford economist Tim Bloom explains how working remotely increases productivity

Having a morning routine is the best way to make sure you get your day started properly. For most, this just means following the normal way you might start a traditional workday. For example:

  • Skip the ‘snooze button’
  • Check phone
  • Have a shower
  • Eat breakfast
  • Grab your coffee
  • Start work

It’s not always easy starting a new routine but stick with it. According to The New Psycho Cybernetics, by Dr. Maxwell Maltz, it only takes 21 days to form a new habit.


8. Set Goals

Setting goals is a great way to motivate yourself to get things done. When setting goals, think in steps. Setting your goal as, “I want to complete X project,” is too large for good motivation.

Instead, break that project down into smaller sections. Create goals by scheduling all the steps you need to accomplish larger projects. In fact, setting up that schedule can be your first task!

Having goals to work on throughout the day keeps you on task and gives you a sense of accomplishment.


7. Reward Yourself

Now that you’re about to become a goal-crushing machine, you better get ready to reward yourself. Of course, you’ll want to set the rewards appropriately for the task at hand.

For instance, you might reward the completion of a large project with a night out. But that would be too extreme for completing a small task like creating a project timeline.

More common reward-based thinking is enough to keep you motivated, but not so much to distract you. Instead of getting a second coffee before starting a task, tell yourself you’ll earn that coffee once you complete it.


6. Get Enough Sleep

Remote workers are prone to working long hours, and that can contribute to an overwhelmingly underslept workforce. Getting enough sleep is an important indicator of workplace wellness. Too little can lead to employee burn-out, as well as a decrease in work quality and productivity.

Adults require a bare minimum of 6 hours of sleep per night. One of the best ways to improve your sleep is to have clear sleep patterns. Have a consistent bedtime and try to limit screen time before bed.

If working from home, having a dedicated home office is ideal. This creates a clear divide between your workspace and sleep space.


5. Environment

Your work environment has a direct impact on the quality and efficiency of your work. You want a clean, organized, well-lit, professional space that is dedicated to working. This space should minimize distractions and focus on productivity.

Many remote workers choose to work out of a Toronto coworking space. These spaces have all the professional equipment and services you might need, as well as an atmosphere that fosters creativity and productivity.


4. Surround Yourself With Motivated People

A big benefit of a coworking space is that you surround yourself with highly motivated people. This helps to boost your own motivation, as well as helping you grow your professional network.

When there are people around you who are working hard, it helps keep you on task. As well, they’re a great source for learning new trends, techniques, and skills that can help you.


3. Don’t Be Stagnant/Go Outside

It’s important to mix things up once in a while. It’s a good way to shake ideas loose and keep your head in the zone. A quick walk outside can clear up the mid-afternoon brain fog.

In a coworking office, many people choose not to get a dedicated desk. This allows them to switch things up day-to-day, as well as helping them meet new people to exchange ideas, boosting their skills and network.

Even those working out of a virtual office can mix things up. People who take advantage of the virtual mailbox services at coworking spaces have access to the lounge. This gives them a great place to do work and keeping themselves accessible.


2. Have The Right Tools

They say a shoddy workman blames his tools — but any self-respecting workman has the right tools for the job. For a remote office, you must have the right equipment and services for success.

This is one of the reasons coworking offices are so sought after by remote workers. They offer top-of-the-line equipment at a fraction of the cost of buying your own. As well, they offer a wide range of support services ranging from IT to bookkeeping.


1. Be Accountable

One of the most important things for successful remote work is being accountable. This is especially important if the remote work program is new.

Being accountable increases trust in you and the program itself. It’s a highly efficient business model, but many employers are skeptical when starting out.


Find Remote Office Space In Toronto

The Professional Centre offers prime remote office space in the heart of Toronto’s Financial District. Our coworking spaces boast top-of-the-line design and capability, making it ideal for any worker.

Book a tour now and discover how TPC can boost your remote work.

Staying Professional as a Freelancer

There’s a misconception among outsiders that freelancing is only for people who are between jobs or looking for experience. But freelancers know the truth. Yes, there are ups and downs, and all sorts of challenges — but nothing beats being your own boss.

Flexible schedules, control of self and personal freedom is a rewarding lifestyle. But too often, clients fail to appreciate the level of expertise and professionalism a good freelancer possesses. To maintain relationships and grow your personal brand, you need to present a professional appearance.

As one of Toronto’s top coworking spaces, and home to freelancers like you, we offer some key tips to stay professional as a freelancer.


Hone Your Online Presence

Nowadays, it’s pretty common for people’s first impression of you to occur online. You need to make sure this digital impression paints you in the right light. Your digital footprint should inspire confidence and trust in potential clients and partners.

Professional-Looking Website

Any good brand has a good website. It should be clean, professional, and easy to navigate. While it’s nice to be able to hire a team of developers and designers to build out the perfect site, you can get by without it.

Many website building sites allow you to purchase professional templates at low costs, often from $25-$200. It’s a low price to pay for something that, if done thoughtfully and with appealing content, imagery and site structure, will help you stand out from the competition.

Social Media Presence

Managing all the top social media platforms can be a full-time gig. But don’t worry, you don’t need to be a social media guru to succeed as a freelancer.

It’s a good idea to grab social media handles for top sites like Twitter and Instagram, as well as for any social media platforms you may want to use in the future.

It’s okay if you aren’t using them all right away, but make sure to update the images and information to match your brand. If possible, try and get the same handle across all platforms.

Two areas you will likely want to establish a presence are a Facebook page and a LinkedIn page. These help to get you discovered online, as well as increasing trust and credibility.

If you provide a local service, setting yourself up on Google My Business and Bing Places will help you show up on map applications and appear in local searches. And, as a bonus, they’re free tools.


First Contact Points

The first contact you have with a client can set the tone for the entire relationship. And while you may be a great talker in person or even over the phone, you aren’t always available. You need to take stock of where and how people may first speak with you.


Freelancing keeps you busy. As available as you may try to be, plenty of calls will go to voicemail. Having a strong, professional voicemail greeting can help establish confidence in your capabilities.

Consider writing out a script before recording. As well, check the acoustics of the room to make sure your voice is clear.

As well, you may want to consider a virtual secretary. This is part of a virtual office that forwards your calls through a secretary to increase your professional image.

Mailing Address

If you are doing location-based business or are likely to have many meetings, your mailing address has an effect on clients. It looks good to be easily available, so it’s nice to have a downtown address. As well, being in a desirable location, like Toronto’s Financial District, can boost your professional appearance.

Of course, renting professional office space in downtown Toronto isn’t in everyone’s budget. But any business can afford a virtual mailbox. This virtual office address allows you to have a high-end address. It also gives you access to a host of other services, and even a lounge area to work in.


If you expect to be meeting clients in person or want to network, it’s worthwhile renting office space. A shared office space is an affordable way for freelancers to get their own professional space in the city.

Whether you choose an open or private office space, this professional space validates your business and increases your credibility.

A coworking space is a great alternative to the home office. It makes it easier to stay productive, helps you build a network, and creates a more professional image.

Professional Interactions

One of the challenges of freelancing, especially out of a home office, is divided attention. You can have a lot going on in your home, but it’s important to give your clients full attention while interacting with them. That means you don’t want the TV, kids, radio, etc in the background while communicating with clients.

As well, make sure to dress appropriately. Freelancers enjoy the freedom to dress comfortably, and it’s a hard habit to break. But when meeting with clients, even over Skype, it’s worth being presentable.

There’s no need to go all out. But a clean, professional attire and proper grooming help to show that you care. For many clients, how you present yourself is a show of respect that matters to them.


Meeting Space

Having a good meeting space adds legitimacy to your business. Meeting clients in your kitchen isn’t a great look. It’s inconvenient and unprofessional.

Fortunately, professional meeting spaces are available for rent, even if you don’t have rent a shared office space. Meeting room rentals can benefit companies of all sizes, from freelancers to enterprises. High-quality design and modern technology set a professional tone for any meeting. Rentals are available by the hour by the day.


Meet Deadlines

Clients, partners, and investors all place a lot of value on reliability. So any successful freelancer makes meeting deadlines a top priority. This helps to ensure repeat business and grow your reputation through word-of-mouth.

Staying organized and keeping an easy-to-read schedule is ideal for giving realistic projections for when you can complete a project.


Know When to Say No

It’s a hard lesson to learn, but it’s one every freelancer figures out eventually. You have to be willing to say no. That can mean saying no to jobs, timelines, payscales, or other factors. You need to manage expectations right out of the gate.

Accepting jobs where you can’t meet deadlines or expectations can damage your professional reputation. As well, it’s a major stress that can affect your other jobs.

You also want to make sure the pay scale matches your efforts. In a lot of freelance industries, there isn’t an industry standard for pay. Your value is where you value yourself. So don’t sell yourself short.


Build Your Professional Image With A Downtown Toronto Coworking Space

A Toronto coworking office makes you accessible, flexible, and professional. Enhance your reputation and capabilities with a coworking office rental. It’s the best value in professional office space for rent, and it’s sure to impress you and your clients.


Book a tour now and discover how The Professional Centre can boost your freelancing business.

How To Maximize Privacy In A Coworking Space

Coworking has taken the business world by storm. It’s effective, it’s trendy, and it takes all the best aspects of the new sharing culture. For some, however, all that sharing is a cause for concern.

To address those concerns, we’re providing a few easy tips for maximizing your privacy while working in a coworking space.

Digital Security

Estimates believe that by 2021, cybersecurity will cost business $6 trillion per year in aggregate. And half of all cyber-attacks are against SMBs. For all businesses, whether in a traditional or coworking office, digital security matters.

Password Managers

Companies in coworking spaces are notorious for being at the forefront of industry trends. In theory, this should help keep them abreast of security risks, but it can come with some drawbacks. For one, they tend to sign up for a lot of tools, services, and demos.

Keeping track of all those different passwords and usernames is a lot to keep in your head. So, too often we revert to just using the same combinations over and over. This puts your digital security at risk.  If someone figures out the password once, they can access all your software.

A good solution is to use a password manager. This gives you an easy solution to store your passwords in one secure location. So you can vary up your passwords without fear of forgetting them, or of getting hacked.

Cloud Tools

Cloud software also helps protect your vital information, without compromising efficiency. It gives you a secure platform to store important documents and files that you can access anywhere, on any device.

As well, in the true coworking spirit, the cloud makes it easy to collaborate with your team. It allows you to share access with specific people, allowing them to review, access, or edit files. It’s not only great for coworking privacy, it’s also ideal for productivity.

Privacy At The Desk

Of course, not all privacy concerns live online. Nor are they all security-related. Sometimes, you just want your space to feel a little more like your own.

Privacy Screens

If you have a nosey desk neighbour or simply want to have your space a little more defined, a privacy screen may be your best bet. These screens come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and types. From full cubicle style screens to ones that sit on your desk, just high enough to block your monitor.

There are also less, formal screens you can use. For example, a desk plant can increase your coworking privacy without making it look like you’re trying to keep others out. As well, they add other benefits like filtering air, emitting pleasant aromas, and inducing calmness.

Filing Cabinets

Filing cabinets are another good idea for your personal privacy in a coworking space. Getting one with a lock not only helps you organize your files, but allows you to feel secure when leaving equipment in the office overnight.


Privacy tech doesn’t just protect you online. Many shared office spaces also leverage physical technology for better privacy.

For instance, cloaking technology is becoming increasingly popular for meeting rooms. They place a strip on the glass that prevents outside viewers from reading the screen during presentations. 

This lets your meeting space have big windows, for a more open feel, without sacrificing privacy. As well, it can make any clients or investors you meet with feel more secure.

Private Office Space

You can also rent private office instead of open space in coworking offices. These offices are available for teams or for individuals. They let you enjoy the best of both worlds. You have access to all the amenities and collaboration of an open office, with the privacy of your own space.

This is especially useful for teams that make a lot of phone calls or deal with private or secure information.

Book A Tour In A Downtown Toronto Coworking Office

At the Toronto Professional Centre, we understand that coworking privacy is a major concern. We take great care to create spaces that are functional, secure, and comfortable. 

Our diverse range of open and private office space can fit the needs of any size or type of business.

Book a tour today and discover the benefits of coworking with TPC.


Hacking Employee Happiness With Shared Office Spaces

Even in the age of automation, the success of a good company falls largely on the shoulders of the employees. Getting the most out of your employees will often lead to positive results in all aspects of your business. Fortunately, a shared office space can help you hack the code to improving employee happiness.

The Value of Employee Happiness

Employee happiness is an important marker for the most successful operations. Factors like contentment help to increase morale and reduce retention. But the true value of employee happiness is measured in their ability to thrive. Thriving is what makes for truly effective, high-value employees.

Here are just a few key benefits of happier employees:


Working in an environment that allows them to thrive results in greater efficiency and quality of work. Happy employees are more engaged and driven. They are a driving force behind growth.


One of the great detriments to a company’s performance is indifferent employees. When an employee doesn’t care, it affects the quality of their work. They miss deadlines and make more frequent errors, as well as coming up with fewer solutions.

An employee who cares about the company brings more to the table. They create a better atmosphere for others and they take pride in doing a good job.

Sick Days

Sick days are an underrated source of lost profit for employers. The day comes out at a net loss for you. You lose out on the work you needed the employee to accomplish, while still paying for those hours. Of course, you can’t scrap sick days, but you can reduce how often people take them.

Improving employee happiness results in people taking fewer unnecessary sick days. As well, happy workers have less stress and tend to take better self-care, resulting in better health.

Above & Beyond

If you want to see your workforce going above and beyond the call of duty, you need to keep their job satisfaction high. Happier employees are driven to go beyond the call of their job, while simultaneously avoiding burnout.


It’s no surprise, happier workers are less likely to leave. By keeping their happiness-level up, you can avoid the high costs of employee turnover, as well as the loss in efficiency while they go off on interviews and touch up their resume.

The Solution: Shared Office Spaces Allow Employees to Thrive

When it comes to increasing employee happiness, coworking may be the solution. Employees at shared office spaces have higher self-reported levels of vitality, learning, and job satisfaction.

In the context of the workplace, vitality means the passion and excitement for the job. The collaborative, open atmosphere of a shared office space helps people see that their actions make a difference to them, their coworkers, and their company. The result is greater enthusiasm for the job, incentivizing people to accomplish more.

The landscape of business is constantly changing. As such, those who stay ahead of the learning curve help your business thrive. In a coworking space, people are more driven to learn. In part, this is due to to the increased vitality. However, it’s also propelled by the atmosphere.

In a shared office, your employees are in the proximity of other agile, learning businesses. This encourages further learning, as well as resulting in a cross-pollination of knowledge. Businesses in the same shared office space learn from each other, creating a symbiotic relationship, even if they do not directly conduct business together.

Furthermore, shared offices increase job satisfaction. Working in an open office keeps up a team mentality. This promotes a healthier, happier business atmosphere. People are less likely to try and one-up coworkers or steal credit. As well, it’s easier for management to see and recognize peoples’ efforts.

This collaborative atmosphere and recognition of one’s own efforts make a big difference in overall job satisfaction.

5 Ways to Enhance the Benefits of a Shared Office

While coworking is already a great way to promote employee happiness, there is still more you can do. Here is a quick list of five easy ways to enhance the benefits of shared office spaces:

  1. Increase Collaboration & Community
  2. Provide Support
  3. Environment
  4. Empowerment
  5. Flexibility

1. Increase Collaboration & Community

Coworking is all about collaboration. One of the simplest ways to improve on this is to build a community in your workplace. Team outings are a low-cost way to quickly increase employee satisfaction and build bonds between workers. As well, they are a nice bonus for attracting new talent.

Team Building

2. Provide Support

A shared office space gives management the ability to work closely with employees. This allows them to provide meaningful support and feedback. Employees feel more valued, leading to improved efficiency and/or quality of work.

As well, the best shared offices offer support services for on-demand use. These services avoid employee headaches, stress and inefficiencies that can happen when trying to solve problems outside of their expertise.

Technical services like IT and troubleshooting prevent frustrations and keep everyone operational. Administrative support can prevent your team from becoming swamped in by other duties in peak periods.

3. Environment

The workplace environment has a big impact on employee morale. Professionally-designed shared office spaces with plenty of natural light and ergonomic furnishings are a great help. But employers can do more to improve the environment inside the coworking space.

Allowing workers to have plants or other decor can make a big difference in a coworking space. It helps to remove the sense of the impermanence of agile office spaces. As well, it creates a more personal, friendly touch.

Also, making full use of the space can help employees thrive. Good coworking spaces have lounges, wellness areas, and more. This allows employees to shake it up a little, working in different locations. It’s a great way to keep them comfortable, happy, and flexible. Don’t keep your workers chained to their desks.

4. Empowerment

Toronto shared office spaces don’t share the same rank-and-file structure of a traditional office. You can use this free-flowing atmosphere to empower your employees. In this atmosphere, they feel more capable of making a difference and are more likely to suggest new ideas. You can promote this further by allowing them more decision-making and sharing information with them.

5. Flexibility

Coworking offices are bastions of flexibility. This is making them popular business spaces for enterprise and startup companies alike. Embracing this flexibility can help you get more out of your workforce.

For example, many companies in shared offices have flexible hours. This can include allowing for different arrival/departure times so that employees can better schedule their day around their commute or needs of their family. For example, an employee may work from 8 to 4, rather than 9 to 5.

As well, offering the flexibility of a few work-from-home days is a great help. In addition to being a nice benefit for employees, it’s also great for employers. For example, many employees will use work-from-home days rather than sick days when they get a cold. This has a double benefit. For one, you don’t lose out on their work. And for the other, they don’t get others sick, resulting in more sick days.

Increase Employee Happiness With Toronto Shared Spaces

In a competitive landscape like Toronto, companies need every edge to reach their full potential. The best shared office spaces help to create happy, thriving employees, for more successful businesses.

Book a tour of our prime downtown Toronto shared office spaces today.