Mentoring Profiles

Get connected:

Sue Clayton, Executive Director, Capital Markets, CB Richard Ellis
Sue ClaytonAnika had asked me for advice on what to specialise in during the third year and through working with the investment, landlord and tenant and agency teams she could make a more informed decision. The scheme is important for those who don't already have connections in the industry and it means they have someone off whom to bounce ideas.

Sounding board:

Anika Saigal
Anika SaigalHaving such a high-profile mentor was intimidating at first, but Sue is so friendly and easy to talk to, it wasn't like that for long. It's amazing that someone who sits on the UK board of CB Richard Ellis would still find the time to answer any of my questions. I had two weeks' work experience with Sue's team this summer and it helped me understand the different departments, which made me decide that I wanted to specialise in investment and finance in the third year. It makes the course all the more interesting because you see how you will use what you're learning.

Culture shock:

Bryan Laxton, Non-executive Director 
Bryan LaxtonIt doesn't usually take a lot of time to help someone out. Sometimes Phil just sends me a quick question by email and, although it might seem obvious to someone like me, it really helps him out and it only takes 60 seconds. When helping him with his applications I try to put my Cushman & Wakefield hat to one side. Of course, we and our competitors all like to say we are the best and in reality we're all different with different cultures. Phil needs to understand that it's not just the size of a company that's important.

Proactive service:

Phil Walker
Phil WalkerWhen I signed up to the scheme I emailed Bryan that day. He replied straight away and arranged a meeting for the next day, so he was very proactive. When I first went to meet him, I thought, god, he's going to be very busy and spend 20 minutes with me at most, but we chatted for an hour and 45 minutes. The jobs market is fairly intimidating at the moment and Bryan arranged for me to shadow the investment and planning teams, which has given me some experience and helped me to decide what to choose
as my specialism in the third year.

Contact sport:

Henry Morris, Senior Associate, Europa Capital
Henry MorrisTaking on a mentee has made me realise how much you learn only through experience. Will saw what actually needs to be done if you're going to buy a building. When he came in during the summer, I think the big difference for him was that he had to realise the level of detail needed in business is so much higher than university - 95% just isn't good enough. Will should concentrate on using the contacts he has made as much as he can. It can be daunting calling up senior people and talking to them, but it's a key skill.

Opportunity knocks:

William Hughes
William HughesThe scheme was set up at the bottom of the market and, as a result, gives you so much more of an opportunity to get into the sector. When the market crashes, people usually close their doors. Henry has given me a real insight in to how a fund manager operates and how funds are managed. As one of the younger mentors he can see things from my perspective because I am looking for the same guidance he was 10 years ago. Plus, it's easier to go for a drink together and we are Opportunity knocks:

Smaller is beautiful:

Holly Franklin, Assistant Manager, DJ Deloitte
Holly FranklinI enjoy giving the small amount of advice that I can, going back over how I did things and explaining how I managed to understand them. When applying for jobs I am advising Isabel to not just look at the big consultancy firms but to consider smaller offices, as sometimes they can suit people better - or to look client side. She should be open-minded about where she goes geographically, within the UK and abroad, and not concentrate only on her APC. Getting a foot in the door is paramount.

Apply yourself:

Isabel Jeans
Isabel JeansHolly was also on a graduate scheme and has helped me a lot with my applications for other graduate schemes and jobs. She has made my CV and covering letters more professional and has helped me understand that you need to target your applications in particular ways, depending on which company you are applying to and its particular culture. That's something you don't necessarily understand if you aren't working in the industry. She is really enthusiastic about the scheme and if I contact her, she always gets in touch straight away with an answer or to arrange a meeting.

Knowledge is power:

Stephen Musgrave, CEO, Houghton Property Advisers LLP

Stephen MusgraveGiving back something to younger people is fundamental to the future of the property industry. This mentoring scheme teaches things that a university can't really teach. We have had some pretty frank discussions about Christian's CV and the way in which you should approach meetings. He needs to make sure he is as financially literate as possible, as computer literate as possible and has gathered as much knowledge as possible in the particular area in which he wants to focus to be able to have an engaging, meaningful and enthusiastic conversation about it.

Mix it up:

Christian Kortlang
Christian KortlangSteve has so much experience so everything he says I take as gospel. I had always been interested in residential development but there seems to be so much mixed use nowadays that I have become more interested in the commercial side. I did some work experience at Hines over the summer and was able to look around some of its projects. I went round Cannon Street in the City of London and sat in on a meeting with Transport for London. TfL updated Hines on how the project could affect the station and the head of finance talked me through the financing of the project, which was great experience.

Practical makes perfect:

James Dipple, Managing Director, MEPC
James DippleBeing able to help out Reading University and give something back to the institution that I learnt at makes me quite proud. Chris is a very diligent and bright lad, who is willing to learn. He came to see me on a project that the graduates had been given and I was impressed with the amount of practical work he was required to do in as far as going out and contacting people and sourcing information. This is what graduates need to realise - a job isn't about career progression, it's about contributing to the performance of the company that you are working for.

True colours:

Christopher Taylor
Christopher TaylorUnlike quite a few of the people on the course, no one in my family is in property. Although I had done a little bit of work experience with surveyors and estate agents, I had no true understanding of how the market worked. James has given me advice on my final-year project, which is a development appraisal for the King's Point site in Reading. He actually knew the site and the people who wanted to develop there. He was, therefore, able to explain aspects of the market that I hadn't understood before.

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