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Andrews are willing to invest in people and offer very good career progression.
My main interest since university has been property and Andrews gave me the chance to explore that. I knew I was applying to a firm that would provide me with opportunities to progress within the role and the company, utilising the history and experience of Andrews itself and the employees.
The simple answer is that I manage blocks of flats, as not many people understand what Leasehold Management is. The longer answer is that we are the appointed agent of the block freeholder or management company to oversee all elements of leasehold property. As a Property Manager I set the annual service charge budget, employ the contractors to undertake maintenance and large scale works projects, report to the company directors at regular meetings and hold block AGMs to meet with all leaseholders and undertake regular site visits. The job which takes up the majority of my time is liaising with leaseholders and residents to deal with any site matters which are brought to my attention.
It is the fact that you do not know what you are going to encounter on any day. The role is so varied and the blocks so different, that you could be dealing with a difficult leaseholder who is in breach of their lease one minute, and having to plan and oversee a major work project worth hundreds of thousands of pounds the next. The job keeps you on your toes and requires you to make big decisions throughout the day. It is the problem solving that I enjoy the most.
My biggest achievement is my own progression within the company. I started out as a Temporary Property Manager in Lettings at the Downend branch, covering a long term absentee. That was supposed to be a three-month contract, which turned into five months, before a position became available at Leasehold. There I worked up from a Joint Property Manager and Administration role to that of full time Property Manager, now I am a Senior Property Manager eight years later. In order to get to where I am now I have had to undertake multiple self-learning courses and written exams.
My biggest challenge was getting used to the fact that, whilst you may have an idea in your head and an action list of things you want to achieve in a day it will often go out of the window very quickly if a major issue presented itself. Leaving an untouched action list and countless emails in my mailbox used to frustrate me. Having done the role for so long now, I am used to those days where you appear to have achieved absolutely nothing.
I have seen the training and development really change over the years I have worked for Andrews. It is great now because all staff are given insights in to all aspects of the business, and training does not always focus on a specific discipline within the firm. It has always been the case that you are encouraged to put yourself on training courses in order to develop your knowledge of the role. I have been on countless training days and attended many seminars to help me progress within Leasehold.
I think the spirit of Andrews comes from its charitable work. The company was founded on this basis, and in recent years these values have been pushed to the forefront of employees' minds, with the promise to deliver an Establish house every year. This enables local branches and the staff to get involved in promoting this.
You need to show dedication to your role and colleagues. Within Leasehold specifically we are a tight knit group and work hard for each other. Having the right attitude and team ethos goes a long way to making the job easier. You also need to show willingness to push yourself and take the training and career progression opportunities wherever possible, otherwise your colleagues will.
If someone was thinking of applying to Andrews then I would say go for it because they are a firm who are very passionate about what they do and how they do it. They are willing to invest in people and offer very good career progression as they operate within so many different property markets.
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