Vice President, Investment Sales, Hotels & Hospitality Group - Asia Pacific
Describe what you do at JLL in one sentence?
I work as a VP on the Investment Sales team of JLL’s Hotels & Hospitality Group in Asia Pacific.
What brought you to JLL?
You have to create your own luck! I was working with a competing hotel brokerage company in Brisbane, Australia, and knew that the Global CEO of JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group at the time (Arthur de Haast – now Chairman) was in town selling the Australian Marriott portfolio. So I emailed Arthur to meet for a beer and we spoke through many aspects of my career, including my ambition to one day work overseas. Two years later to almost the day as I was ironing my shirt to go to work, I remember receiving a call from a British phone number – it was Arthur. “Hi Tom, just a quick one – I remember you saying you had an interest in working overseas one day…would you move to Miami, USA, to join the JLL team?”. Four weeks later I left my old job and was on a flight to Florida.
What clients do you work with?
Hotels are as an interesting asset class as the clients who own them. We deal with all walks of life in the hotels space from domestic and international property groups and REITs, to hotel managers such as Marriott, Langham and Ovolo, to high net worth individuals with backgrounds completely foreign to the industry. One thing I learnt early in my career is that no two hotels are the same, neither are the expectations of clients.
What’s the best day you’ve had so far?
I’m not sure if I could pinpoint one exact day – there have been many “best days” for a lot of different reasons. From getting that call to join JLL, to my first day in Miami meeting Gregory Rumpel (AKA Bono), to site tours in South Beach and the Caribbean, to JLL-only events at Wrigley Field watching the Cubs win…. The list goes on!
What motivates you to come to work each day?
Getting into a good routine crucial – get up early, work out hard, have a coffee, read the paper and try to clear the most dreading calls first!
What’s one problem you’d like to fix?
Are there bad days too?
Bad days are inevitable, it’s more about how you respond to them. Sometimes it’s important to just stop, take a step back and have a perspective on your work and personal life. But most importantly don’t sweat the little things, don’t take yourself too seriously and just have fun. As they say, the bad days make the good ones better!
What’s the best thing about your job?
This is a tough one! I would say it is a tie between the travel and working with a global team. I was very fortunate to work with the incredible U.S. team in Miami and Chicago for a number of years, which included some pretty amazing hotel tours throughout the U.S., Caribbean and Latin America. I certainly value those experiences, the people I met along the way from hotel porters, to JLL personnel in different offices to my fiancé at a bar in Chicago!
How long have you been with JLL?
Almost five years ago to the day Arthur called me – I think I owe him another beer!
Describe your perfect team-mate?
Someone as hard working as Andrew Dickey, as witty as Adam McGaughy, as wise as Troy Craig, as reliable as Tom Sawayanagi and as relaxed as Gregory Rumpel – that would be great, thanks!
What do you love about JLL?
Working with a global team that has the working environment of a small family office, though has the professionalism, track record, resources of a market-leading publicly-listed company.
What’s your work philosophy?
Under promise, over deliver.
What keeps you up at night?
Usually a Formula 1 race!
Any advice for your younger self?
Invest $100 a month on the stock market, buy Bitcoin early, be humble and don’t be afraid to take risks!
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