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Know Your BDM: Stephen Wrigley, Glenhawk

  • 18/04/2024
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Know Your BDM: Stephen Wrigley, Glenhawk
This week Specialist Lending Solutions is speaking with Stephen Wrigley (pictured) business development manager (BDM) at Glenhawk.

Which locations and how many advisers and broker firms do you cover in your role at Glenhawk?

I cover the South West and Wales, which reaches out to Oxford and down to Bournemouth. I have a number of key firms within the regions, but happy to sit down and talk all things bridging with any advisers looking to move into this space.


What personal talent/skill is most valuable in doing your job?

I think, foremost, being personable is right up there. Essentially, the job is about people, whether that be day-to-day with my broker network or liaising with my colleagues at head office, it’s my job to communicate effectively both ways.


What personal talent/skill would you most like to improve on?

My IT skills, or lack of, should I say.


What’s the hardest part of your job?

Spinning plates. Bridging cases, by their very nature, can be time-sensitive, which adds an extra layer of pressure with many cases. As the old saying goes, time and tide waits for no man.


What do you love most about your job?

The people. I’m fortunate enough to have some great broker firms in my patch I have the pleasure of working with and have done so now for a number of years. I also work with some great people internally; doing this job, you need a good team around you in order to do so effectively.


What’s the best bit of career-related advice you’ve ever been given? Who gave it to you?

A certain Jamie Pritchard once suggested quite strongly I should consider looking into moving across to bridging. I’ve not looked back since.


How do you keep up to date with developments in the market?

I check on daily publications like this one, and social media platforms such as LinkedIn fill in the gaps these days to allow you to stay abreast of the marketplace. I also think it’s important to attend property meetings in your area to keep up with local movements.


What is the most quirky/unique property deal you’ve been involved in?

Some years ago, I was asked to find a mortgage for a former office building that was listed as a national monument due to the Roman skeletons in the basement. The client forgot to mention the garage next door – luckily, we found a solution.


Tell us about your trickiest case – what happened and how did you resolve the problem(s)?

As brokers keep telling me, there’s no such thing as a straightforward case these days. We recently helped a client undertake a basement dig on a ground floor flat in London, which was far from straightforward and hit some last-minute snags due to the freeholder agreement. Thankfully, due to open lines of communication between the broker and underwriter, a suitable solution was found.


What was your motivation for choosing this career?

If I’m totally honest, I fell into it by accident. I was training to be a school teacher, but ended up with my first job in the Co-op Bank. Not sure I could handle a classroom of screaming children now, so think it was the right move.


If you could do any other job in the property sector, what would it be and why?

Architect. I think there needs to be more of a design-led approach to building design as opposed to throwing up something quickly, and more of a thought process as to how that building interacts and sits within its environment.


What did you want to be growing up?

A marine biologist. I was fascinated by all things under the sea. There wasn’t a huge call for marine biologists in Bristol, however, funnily enough.


If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

I’ll take Superman’s flight. Love travelling, but not such a fan of the airline queue.


What is your strategy for tackling challenges?

Tackle them face-on. Ultimately, as BDMs we have to deliver some tough conversations at times, but I think most brokers appreciate upfront honesty as soon as possible.


And finally, what’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked?

I’m not sure about the strangest, but I am asked if we can lend on everything from toilet blocks to chicken coops on weekly basis.

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