Wednesday Q&A: Jonathan McManus, Partner – Commercial Agency

First job: Selling trainers in Olympus Sports (concession store in Debenhams).

First car: Green Peugeot 206 (it had electric windows…in the front only)

What did the start of your professional life look like:

Graduate at Chesterton and working in the Business Space Agency department. Chesterton was struggling by that point (nothing to do with me!) but it was an eye opener and provided the contrast of working in a large corporate with the home comforts, but also having to justify your existence because we didn’t have a large agency team.The market wasn’t great in 1998 when I started, but I was grateful for the 3 years I had at Chesterton.

Best advice received:

Don’t waste any time worrying about things you can’t change.

What do you like most about your job:

Agency work means we can deal with 20 different jobs/properties in one day. We get to see a huge varying range of properties and meet lots of interesting people. It’s also the most social side of profession. Rarely gets boring.

And least:

The Surveying profession now has managed to take on an utterly unrealistic level of responsibility for client’s behaviours and even for parties that are not actually even our clients. We also “sold the jerseys” many years ago on fee levels when we dropped the recommended scale fees.

Biggest personal achievement:

I have two daughters. Whilst utterly extraordinarily high maintenance, difficult, awkward, stubborn……. nothing else I do will ever compare to them.

The repair most worth doing to your property is:

For my own part, renewing of a large section of render on gable end of our house. I have been dreading facing up to that job for years.

How do you see the current crisis panning out for your sector:

Bit of guesswork needed here. On a selfish level, the nature of the DM Hall agency work means we are well spread across the sectors and reasonably resilient and resistant to any particular large peaks and troughs in commercial transactional business. There is no doubt retail was already facing problems well before the pandemic albeit this might have exacerbated those problems. The clear trade off is that there are obvious changes in the industrial and distribution markets which benefit from changing retail trends which have been evident over the last few years and will continue to be so. I think the predictions of doom for the office market are premature and probably inaccurate. For many reasons Corporates will still want top end offices in major towns and cities, albeit they might alter the ways in which they occupy and use such buildings. I struggle to believe there is as much appetite for home working, as seems to be widely reported.

How do you switch off:

I am a Hearts man. Always a conversation stopper….

I also play as much golf as possible and always enjoys beers with the guys. 

What do you listen to in the car:

Stevie Wonder

Which social media sites so you like/prefer:

I can take it or leave it. Twitter for my own amusement, but not much else.

If you weren’t in your current job, what would you be doing: Dolphin Trainer.

Favourite holiday destination: Anywhere sunny, but usually the Canaries.

What makes you happy: When I have some life balance. Home, work & play.

 

Back to latest news
2020-07-08T11:11:41+00:00