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Real Estate and Bschool

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Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 20 May 2011, 21:07
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Hey gang, Jon Frank here--your friendly neighborhood bschool consultant.

Today I wanna talk about an oldie but goodie...REAL ESTATE. As many of you know, before founding Precision Essay I worked at a number of Real Estate firms in both finance and development (ING and Trammell Crow Residential, to name a few.) And the world today looks...a bit different than it did when I applied and got into HBS.

So lets get into the most pressing question of the bunch: why should real estate guys get MBAs, and not other degrees? After all, many folks have argued (on these forums especially) that other, newer programs are best--MSRE programs, etc.

Well, I believe that all Real Estate business professionals should get MBAs, and NOT these other, newer degrees. Let me list three reasons why:

1. Network. Since graduating from bschool, I have done a number of multifamily deals, and I have raised money from my HBS friends. NONE of them are in real estate! After all, all the real estate guys I know are trying to raise money themselves. You should try to meet as many different types of people as possible--THESE will be your investors. If you just meet fellow RE developers...you will be strapped for cash when it comes time to raise money for your deals.

2. Real Estate is easy. You will learn eeeverything you need to know on the job. : ) Finance formulas, how to calculate returns, how to find good sites, etc. You simply DONT need to take RE classes in grad school to learn the stuff. Take it from me--at HBS there was just one RE class total. : ) Instead, focus on marketing, leadership, operations--all things that WILL come in handy, especially as a developer.

3. You may not even do real estate. I mean, right? Who the heck knows what the world will look like in 3 years--and where your passion may lead you. You may even found the next Precision Essay (if you arent careful). Hedge your bets gang, get a degree that will suit you no matter where you find yourself. An MBA is extraordinarily flexible, and for your money, that is the smartest bet.

Hope this helps, and good luck!

Jon Frank
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 15 Aug 2013, 21:18
Hi Jon,

Can you shed some more light on which real estate companies visit the top b schools and what job roles they offer?
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 18 Aug 2013, 21:27
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Since I worked in real estate for ten years (including before and after bschool at HBS) we know a LOT about the real estate biz, working with folks to get into it through and after MBA.

There are two types of RE companies that come recruiting--one is the FINANCE side of things. Companies like ING and Blackrock--they invest in real estate, and they're looking for guys to run numbers on RE Deals. Investments, rehabs, and new developments. Even some hedge funds (like Baupost) that focus in the RE space. But this always seemed...quite boring to me. : )

So I focused on the actual DEVELOPMENT companies that came, which back in the day were Trammell Crow Residential (now defunct), Tishman Speyer, and a number of REITS (Related, etc.) For those guys, you would be hired as a DEVELOPMENT associate. Thats more fun, but you get your hands much dirtier--sitting through late night community meetings, meeting with officials, gladhanding, etc. You would do some numbers, but you'd likely have a finance guy workin with you on the heavy duty stuff. But those are the two main tracks you'll find, coming out of a school like HBS anyway...

Does that help?
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 18 Aug 2013, 22:24
JonAdmissionado wrote:
Since I worked in real estate for ten years (including before and after bschool at HBS) we know a LOT about the real estate biz, working with folks to get into it through and after MBA.

There are two types of RE companies that come recruiting--one is the FINANCE side of things. Companies like ING and Blackrock--they invest in real estate, and they're looking for guys to run numbers on RE Deals. Investments, rehabs, and new developments. Even some hedge funds (like Baupost) that focus in the RE space. But this always seemed...quite boring to me. : )

So I focused on the actual DEVELOPMENT companies that came, which back in the day were Trammell Crow Residential (now defunct), Tishman Speyer, and a number of REITS (Related, etc.) For those guys, you would be hired as a DEVELOPMENT associate. Thats more fun, but you get your hands much dirtier--sitting through late night community meetings, meeting with officials, gladhanding, etc. You would do some numbers, but you'd likely have a finance guy workin with you on the heavy duty stuff. But those are the two main tracks you'll find, coming out of a school like HBS anyway...

Does that help?


Wow thanks a lot! Infact thats exactly what I was looking for.

In my essay draft on goals, I have mentioned that after completing my MBA I plan to work as a Project Development Associate in some big real estate companies like Tramwell (didnt know that its defunct since the website is pretty much working), Tishman, Hines & JLL. Do you think thats a specific eough goal? I would also like to know if I should mention "Senior Associate" as my short term goal instead of just "Associate".

Also, you having graduated from HBS, I would like to know what impact such goals on Real Estate have on Ad-com in bschools such as HBS and GSB since they dont have much RE based electives.

Finally,I would like to know that from your experience, what suggestions would you give to a young chap wanting to make a career in RE development.

Thanks & Looking forward to your response.
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 19 Aug 2013, 22:51
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Lots of specific questions my friend! It is hard to answer without having a touch more information--feel free to send me a personal email at jon@admissionado.com and we can get into some more particulars. Yes, if you are planning on mentioning TCR (Trammell) in your applications, ummm do some research there first! : ) And Senior versus Associate doesn't matter--the point is "Development" and "Associate." If you cover those two ideas, youre golden... Again, feel free to reach out to me personally for more detailed real estate info--send along your resume too, so I have a better sense for whats what...
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 21 Mar 2014, 12:28
Hi Jon,

If you want to pursue a job as a real estate development associate post MBA, what kind of pre MBA WE do they look for?

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2014, 00:00
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charlottet123 wrote:
Hi Jon,

If you want to pursue a job as a real estate development associate post MBA, what kind of pre MBA WE do they look for?

Thanks in advance!


Hey,
Well mostly RE work :). But finance also works good. If RE is your dream the key is: network your butt off in B-school. that's where the grand payoff is.
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2014, 11:11
Thanks Jon!
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Re: Real Estate and Bschool [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2014, 07:10
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charlottet123 wrote:
Thanks Jon!


You got it Charlotte!

Good luck!
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