Whatever the rights or wrongs of the latest Tube strike, no doubt there will be quite a bit of disruption to travel plans for Londoners over the next 24 hours or so.
However, a quick poll around the London office indicates that at Blayze Group we'll have a full house and it will pretty much be business as usual. We're fortunate that our London office is located in St. James' - deliberately selected for ease of access for clients and candidates - so we have a number of options when it comes to beating the tube strike, even if St. James's Park station is out of action for the day.
Blayze Group has always been keen on encouraging health and fitness amongst its staff, and several consultants have taken advantage of the generous discounts afforded by the cycle to work scheme to get back in the saddle. Guy, Henry, Oliver and Alan are all regular cyclists so it will just be a matter of avoiding collisions with the additional Boris bikers (and perhaps even Boris himself) to get to the office and continue the pursuit of Quantity Surveyors, Building Surveyors, Site Managers and Project Managers that keep the construction and housebuilding industries running.
Linus, too, will heading in on his brand new ‘fixie’ to ensure that the Architecture and Design desk is manned and no-one with advanced skills in Microstation, Revit, 3D Studio Max or InDesign slips through the net. Many of our Architect clients are growing their practices and experienced technicians are in demand.
Like most information workers these days, at Blayze Group we have the technology to work pretty much anywhere. However, we all like to get to the office where we can meet candidates and clients and keep each other up to date with various projects we are undertaking.
Leo Gee, who heads up the Consultancy desk sums up Blayze Group's attitude on occasions like this when he says 'We understand some people may have difficulty getting to and from work when there is disruption to the transport network such as that caused by the dispute between Transport for London and the tube drivers. As an employer Blayze Group offers a degree of flexibility at times like this, but we know everyone will give their best efforts to getting in to the office'.
At Blayze Group, performance is much more important than presenteeism; if you are doing the work and producing results, you'll get the recognition you deserve.
For some, getting in will entail a crowded bus journey or a bit of a walk, but mostly it just requires a bit of planning and allowing some extra time for the journey.
Harvey Gretton, the MD at Blayze Group will be taking an extra long walk to the office this morning - bluetoothed up to the smartphone, setting up the day, talking with clients and our senior managers and will likely get a lot more done than if straphanging on the Central Line. A bit of fresh air and a decent walk will also be a lot better for stress levels than a crowded commute on the tube!
Enterprising staff like Vanessa, who runs the Business Development desk and lives out of town have arranged to stop over with friends or colleagues who are within easier striking distance of the office. It's this kind of commitment and co-operation that defines what it's like to work at an organisation like Blayze Group.
Some of our consultants - like Clare who works on the infrastructure desk - will use the Overground to Victoria, so it is only a short walk down Victoria street to get to the Blayze Group office at Petty France. Being keen on all things rail related, Clare will doubtless take a few moments to check the progress of the Victoria infrastructure upgrades while waiting for Sam - who will be on his normal Network Rail main line service into Victoria.
While the area around Victoria station looks like a building site at the moment - well, actually, it is a building site - that's no bad thing for us Real Estate professionals. We like to keep an eye on all the major developments in and around London - and it so much handier when they are on our doorstep!
Clare and Sam welcome the opportunity to check the progress on Land Securities Nova developments and see how the various elements of the Victoria masterplan are coming together. A stroll down Victoria Street takes them past some of the most significant commercial and retail developments in the capital in recent years.
The landmark Cardinal Place, home to Microsoft and EDF among others is one of the most striking buildings in SW1 with its sweeping glass façade narrowing to a single point at the corner of Bressenden Place and Victoria Street.
Cardinal Place is closely followed by the ZigZag Building (another Land Securities project) designed from the ground up for the modern business, with flexibility, energy efficiency and workplace wellbeing features built in from the earliest stages of planning.
Continuing on down Victoria Street past the luxury apartments of Kings Gate (LandSec again) you'll find Westminster City Hall (yes - Land Securities). A rather banal 1960s office block, Westminster City Hall now looks rather incongruous surrounded as it is by distinctive, bold, modern structures. It is no surprise that it and its erstwhile neighbour Kingsgate Parade (now replaced by the Zig Zag and the residential Kings Gate) was described by Pesvner as 'utterly mute in civic expression'.
It would probably come as no surprise to the Westminster planning committee to find a redevelopment proposal for 64 Victoria Street on the agenda before very long!
Next door it's worth taking a few seconds to admire the tilting panes of glass that make the frontage of 62 Buckingham Gate such a striking modern office building. Indeed, it's not unknown for a keen property recruitment consultant on the return journey at the end of the day to briefly stop at 52 Victoria Street - being as it is a fine vantage point from which to observe the striking Pelli Clarke design!
It only remains to cross over Buckingham Gate and take a left down Palmer Street - just before 42 Victoria Street - perhaps better known as TfL's Windsor House - where all the trouble started in the first place...
A quick shimmy down Caxton Street and up Vandon Passage and you've arrived at the Blayze Group office - refreshed from the walk and perhaps slightly better educated on some of the more significant commercial and retail properties of SW1.
Like most businesses in London, Blayze Group staff will go the extra mile (quite literally in this case) to get into the office. It will take more than a tube strike to stifle the economic activity of one of the great cities of the world.
We know our clients and candidates will also be using their initiative, ingenuity and determination to get in to the office and get working - Good Luck!