For LA filmmaker Michelle Renee Jackson, there is no 9‑5 day. So having a 24‑hour flexspace a block away from home has been invaluable

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Simuel + Murray has seen revenue grow significantly over the last two years. Its founder Michelle Renee Jackson shares why being a Regus client has been integral to the company’s success.

Michelle Renee Jackson prefers to keep work and home life separate. And like many, the founder of LA-based creative studio Simuel + Murray needs an office environment to be productive. So when the pandemic first hit in spring 2020 and the downtown location she was running her small business from emptied, she was determined not to budge. But it no longer felt like a stimulating office environment and she needed a more vibrant place to work.

Fortunately, Regus parent company IWG had several locations that met Jackson’s needs and she is now based at a Regus location in West Los Angeles. Jackson explains that the biggest benefit of the centre is its proximity to her home – it’s just a block away. It’s a perk that has seen a massive surge in demand with the rise of the 15-Minute City concept around the world. “I don’t have to get in my car and waste hours on a huge commute, and can even walk home for lunch,” she says.

“I have one office, which I can use 24 hours a day. As filmmakers, that fits really well for us because we don’t work regular hours. There is no 9-5 and sometimes I end up working into the early hours,” she continues. “The space is large enough for us to fit all our equipment in and, should I have clients visiting, there are meeting rooms and conference spaces. No more having to conduct business at a coffee shop.”

The office walls are also solid and opaque rather than transparent glass. It was a design element that was incredibly important for Jackson, who says her company requires privacy and discretion because of the nature of its projects – most of which focus on racial injustice, inclusion and changing the way the world relates to slavery. Its award-winning short film Another Slave Narrative, for example, tells the stories of formerly enslaved African Americans and has been screened at film festivals across the US, as well as been used by schools nationwide to educate students about the topic.

Simuel + Murray’s revenues grew significantly through 2020 and 2021 and Jackson says that, unlike the home environment, the centre provides a professional space large enough to accommodate new employees and interns with immediate effect – something she considers crucial if the company is to continue its upward trajectory.

“We have a space where our team can come and collaborate. It’s also large enough to accommodate any extra technical equipment we need, such as cameras or hard drives, as we acquire new projects,” she explains.

“The Regus centre is very welcoming and there are always opportunities to meet potential new clients or collaborators in the hallways or communal areas of the building. It’s something that wouldn’t be possible if you’re working from your kitchen table at home. This will continue to help us grow as a business.”

Regus has been incredibly supportive, she adds. For example, when she needed to make the move to her current office on Wilshire Boulevard, the Regus team helped her make a smooth transition.

Jackson has high hopes for Simuel + Murray in 2022 and plans to add more videography and photography clients to its portfolio. And, of course, she wants to build on the success of its current projects and continue sharing the stories of enslaved African-Americans.

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