What locations and how many advisers and broker firms do you cover in your role?
I currently look after 23 firms, however, I’m always looking to increase that number, and the areas I cover are generally quite broad, being right across the UK. Most of the brokers I deal with are in Wales however I also have contacts with advisers in Bournemouth, Norwich, Darlington, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.
How have you changed the way you establish and maintain a good relationship with brokers in the pandemic?
Like most people pre-2020 I had rarely used Zoom or Microsoft Teams, however, it’s now become a part of my everyday routine. Also, pre-2020 I rarely worked at home which I have found has pros and cons but overall, it’s been productive enabling me to give regular timely updates via e-mail or phone. A combination of working from home and in the office suits me best.
What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?
It’s important to enjoy communicating and believe in the ‘product’ you sell. If you believe in the product and enjoy communicating, then they go hand in hand in my opinion. Having both attributes will make it easy to enjoy your work, speak with passion and keep people engaged in the product and naturally it will be something you look forward to doing.
What personal talent/skill would you most like to improve on?
Multi-tasking. I struggle to this day to tap my head and rub my belly in harmony.
Where would you rather be stuck, in bumper-to-bumper traffic or back-to-back Zoom calls?
That is a tough one as I do like to travel. In winter probably back-to-back Zoom calls with the radiator on, however in summer, I enjoy a bit of music in the car with some sunny summer vibes. As I am writing this though I am picturing beeping horns and a lot of stress on the road, so I will stick with the Zoom calls.
What is the best bit of career-related advice you have ever been given?
To enjoy what you do and ensure the advice you give people is the same advice you would give to your next of kin or a close family member. If you would give the same advice to them then you know it is the right thing to do.
What is the most unique property deal you have been involved in?
That is very difficult as I’ve also been underwriting for the last five years so there have been many, however it always fascinates me whenever we do deals which are based in London due to the house prices on certain types of properties always being beyond my expectations.
What has been your lockdown coping strategy?
For me I love to cook, and I love my food so to balance that I have been very motivated to stay fit. It began with the Joe Wicks PE classes last year, then to running three times a week and now I am signed up for the Manchester Marathon in October which is a good way to keep focused.
If you were head of the FCA for the day, what would you change about regulation in the mortgage industry?
It is difficult to say to be honest as I think Evolution Money work well within the regulatory rules and generally go beyond in terms of meeting the regulations, so nothing immediately stands out as an issue.
What was your motivation for choosing business development as a career?
I have always enjoyed travelling, meeting new people and as I mentioned earlier, I love to communicate whether it be with new or old friends. So, I have always felt this role would go hand in hand with what I enjoy the most therefore it brings out the best in me out.
If you could do any other job in the property sector, what would it be and why?
My wife is addicted to shows like Homes under the Hammer or Grand Designs, so naturally I watch these as well. Maybe one day I could present Grand Designs, or at least attempt an episode.
What did you want to be growing up?
Same as many young boys I am sure, at first it was a footballer. I was a cracking midfielder back in the day, gradually I moved to centre back and then eventually left back in the changing rooms. At that point I knew my dream was over. By about 14, I changed to wanting to be a DJ as I got my first set of turntables, then I realised I couldn’t mix so after that I thought long and hard and concluded a BDM role was best.
What’s your favourite face mask pattern to wear?
I’d love to give a flamboyant answer here, but I have only ever worn the white and blue ones. If I ever do splash out, I did once see the Manchester Buzzing Bee design so I would probably buy that.
And finally, what’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked?
As a youngster I was often mistaken for actor Jamie Bell who was Billy Elliott in the film of the same name. Sometimes I even got asked to dance; fortunately, that did not stick with me forever.