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Paula Gunn

Paula Gunn Communications Officer

Be Inspired Series

Jeremy Baird

Group Lettings Manager
Morton Pinpoint

"I think it is vitally important to be passionate about what you do, and to enjoy your work.When someone shows a passion what for they are doing success is not too far away," says Jeremy.

 

What does your job entail? 

I am involved in the daily running of a large residential letting portfolio across our branches.  This includes a range of activities including overlooking rent collection, inspections, releases and verification checks.

Our maintenance department is a very important part of our management business, and communication is key.  We work very hard to ensure our clients both landlords and tenants are always kept well informed on ongoing maintenance issues and trying to deliver an efficient service in this respect.  What I really enjoy is the business development side of my day.  Our meeting potential new clients, and meeting with current clients advising them on potential purchasers and building opportunities. 

Is it 9-5?

Not at all. We do have set hours for the office of 8.30 - 5.30pm and a Saturday from 10 - 1.  But the nature of the business means having to be flexible after hours, so if someone wants to view a certain property etc, or if a client can only make it on weekends and so on.  Generally you would find our team in the office at 8ish to around six.  I have been very impressed with the staff at Morton Pinpoint and their dedication to getting the job done!

Outline your career to date?

From University I began the company Managemint in Coleraine with the idea of servicing the holiday and student market.  I decided to move the company to Belfast due to the more sizable market and set up on the Stranmillis Road.  Three years later we decided to open a Lurgan branch to service the Craigavon Borough which is still in working hard.  January 2013 Managemint merged with Morton Pinpoint in their Lisburn Road office and I took over the rental side of the business working with Nick Brennan.

How did you get into this line of work?

I spent a few years studying at the University of Ulster in Coleraine.  During my masters study in Business Innovation, I was given the task of coming up with a business plan within the service industry.   I decided to undertake a project themed around a property letting and management company, and enjoyed it to the point I decided to start my own company.

Until Jan 2013 I was the Managing Director of my own residential lettings agency, Managemint Ltd - with two offices; Belfast and Lurgan.  My role demanded a range of all business activities from marketing, business development to accounts.  In Jan 2013 I merged with Morton Pinpoint and took over as the Group Head of residential property letting and management.  This has given me the opportunity to excel at many of the aspects of the business and the sector which I thoroughly enjoy including client liaison, business development and marketing.  Although I have the responsibility for overlooking the rentals across our five offices, so balancing my time is of great importance.

What sort of qualities do you need to do your job successfully?

I think it is vitally important to be passionate about what you do, and to enjoy your work.  When someone shows a passion what for they are doing success is not too far away.  There are other qualities which are also vital in being successful in your job, at the foremost would be communication. It is important to communicate with your fellow staff, and with your clients on a regular basis.

Tell us about your career/training?

I studied at the University of Ulster and gained a degree in Business with Computing and a Masters in Business Information and Innovation.  In the property sector itself I am self taught, although regularly attend many training events and conferences within the industry to ensure being kept up to date with the latest trends, legislation and requirements.

What do you like most about your job?

I enjoy getting out meeting new people on a daily basis. It means every day has something new to look forward to.  I do have a passion for property; I always enjoy getting out to see new properties, how they were constructed, finished and giving advice on helping to improve properties.

Where is the most interesting place your job has ever taken you?

I am not sure about the most interesting place as we have been based very much in our own regional areas.  The most interesting property that I have seen and we looked after was a penthouse apartment on Adelaide Street which had a golf putting range and a hot tub!  At £2K per month it was quite a spot.. Although I still remember receiving calls asking if the landlord accepted Housing Benefit.

Are there any other projects you are involved in that you are particularly proud of?

The Arc development in Titanic Quarter has been a superb development to be part of, and the Mill Pond Manor development in Hillsborough is probably one of the best rentals we have had the pleasure of working with.

What is the best advice you have ever received?

I was told when I was getting Managemint going to get myself a business mentor, someone whom I could trust and confide in going forward.  I think when you start a run a company yourself it can be difficult to gain momentum with no second opinion, so I have found this to be most useful and have had two business mentors who in their own right are very successful in business and whom I have regularly gained valuable advice from.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I love competitive sport. I play rugby for Dungannon RFC when I'm not injured, and love playing golf although it doesn't seem to love me, and hill climbing in the Mournes.

Tell us something interesting about yourself

Not many would know it but I'm also a qualified speech and drama teacher!  Although nobody believes me because I talk so fast sometimes.

Who has inspired you most in your life?

Definitely my parents. My father was a doctor and instilled his work ethic in me and I have been extremely proud of them both.

And finally? ( a piece of advice for anyone wanting a career like yours)

Just to make sure you have a passion whatever your chosen career path is.  I think if you show a genuine passion for your work you will both enjoy yourself and succeed.

 

Part of the Independent News and Media group