Who are you?

Jim McCain co-founder of graft, a new business members club in Glasgow.

What does your business do?

graft is a new brand of five-star serviced, high quality business members club that provides flexible office space. It’s the first graft to launch with further spaces planned throughout the UK.

graft offers hyper-connected office space, and is available for both hot desking or longer lets and for businesses scaling either up or down. Aimed at mobile business people who need an occasional or regular desk; those who work from home but find themselves in need of office space, and companies looking for City Centre desks without committing to a full office lease and all the associated costs. graft also has meeting rooms, function rooms, full kitchen facilities and a library.

Where are you based?

graft, 241 West George Street, Glasgow. We own the entire building so introducing graft into the building was a bit of a “no brainer”.

How did you get started?

I started working in the property department at Scottish Mutual Assurance Society in 1977 straight from school. Property at that time was only a small part of the investment department but it gave me a great grounding into stock and shares, yields and the economy in general.

What is your background?

I have 40 years’ experience in the property market, predominantly with Glasgow based City Site Estates plc.

What is your top tip?

Wait until someone has finished making their point before jumping in!

How long has your business been running?

graft has been 12 months in planning, but only open three months, so feeling a bit like a new father at the moment!

Has anyone helped you get started and how?

The team that is behind the concept and design ideas especially Paul and Sheona, at Left City Architects, and Avril and Gary, at p4p creative for their branding and image ideas. The wider team of Lisa, Pauline, Ronnie, Laura and Nicole and Mark (they’ll know who they are for putting up with the numerous challenges and changes!)

What was your first deal?

I remember negotiating surrenders for Scottish Mutual at 123 St Vincent Street to allow them to redevelop it which is at least 30 years ago.

What was your biggest mistake/or what would you do differently?

Not seeing the 2008 crash coming but not many did. No one had heard of sub-prime mortgages then!

Who was/is your mentor/or inspiration?

My mentor and inspiration was Bob Scott from Scottish Mutual days who put the fear of death in me, but who taught me all I know and encouraged me no end. He told me “not to put anything off to tomorrow that you can do today”. I try and stick to that rule as best I can but it’s not always easy.

Where do you plan your business to be in five years’ time?

To grow the graft brand UK wide to provide a sophisticated alternative to the traditional office; one that’s purpose designed to serve established companies, mobile professionals and start-ups.