A realist at heart

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Luca Ciliento Fiduciam

In our latest Five Minute Interview, Tony Sanchez speaks to Luca Ciliento, Case Manager in the Irish team at Fiduciam.

Italian born Luca joined Fiduciam as an intern two years ago after graduating in Business Management and Economics in London.

He joined the Irish team, which was interesting in itself; an Italian trying to understand strong Irish accents presented certain challenges.

After the first few weeks struggling with calls from Irish clients, solicitors and brokers, he finally got used to the accent and sayings: the first time he realised that he was making progress was after being asked “What’s the craic?”, to which he proudly responded that he was well.

From that moment on the accent was less of a problem and for some reason he started drinking Guinness and loving the colour green!

What is the best thing about being in the bridging and development finance business?

Supporting small-medium enterprises to grow and prosper.

Providing finance to such businesses and building genuine “human” relationships with our clients, means I get to see the real world impact of our funding.

Sometimes, after completing a loan we receive calls from our clients saying how happy they are or commenting how their business is improving, which always gives me a real boost.

Being a part of this team has brought me unexpected yet stimulating experiences.

I got immersed in a market where Fiduciam was just expanding, which completely changed my career and habits… even though sometimes I still nod and smile when I don’t understand my boss, but please don’t tell him!

What keeps you focused?

Ambition and a well-deserved pint on a Friday night. Meeting our targets is essential in a fast-paced sector like ours and aiming for a little extra definitely gives me a kick.

However, after an intense week this ambition has to be refuelled… a beer please!

What qualities do you look for in your employees or colleagues?

I believe everyone working in our business has to have self-confidence and of course motivation.

We are a young, vibrant, passionate team. We would not be successful without these qualities.

Are you an optimist or a pessimist?

I’m not sure that either optimist or pessimist applies to me, I prefer to be a realist.

I have realistic ambitions and am generally realistic about my expectations from other people.

When it comes to seeing the glass half full or half empty, I just see water inside!  The question is whether that water quenches or not.

What did you want to be as a child?

I wanted to run a car manufacturing company, I had the logo and first prototypes ready (crayon-superior-designed models), but nobody was willing to fund a 5-year-old boy…

What will be the greatest challenges facing the bridging and development finance industry in the coming months?

We are starting to see the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, especially here in the UK.

With my realist’s head on I believe the future for our market seems promising.

The greatest challenge will be the return to normalcy and funding good quality businesses to rebuild what has been wiped off during the past year.

Who or what makes you laugh?

Steve Carrell interpreting Michael Scott in The Office (U.S.).

Probably not the manager role model, but his embarrassing humour just cracks me up; I’d love to get out of some difficult situations just like he does.

Do you dread Monday mornings?

I’m sure there are many that don’t look forward to Monday mornings, but I can honestly say that doesn’t apply to me.

I really look forward to the potential of another exciting new week. One thing I do dread however, is the thought that my alarm won’t go off on Monday mornings.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Generally, I like going to the gym, but ‘leg-days’ are the hardest.

If I could change anything it would be to enjoy these days as much as I enjoy all the other exercise days.

I can see the benefit, but I don’t look forward to the pain.

With whom would you most like to have dinner?

Elon Musk, in my opinion he is one of the most influential (out of the ordinary) people of the 21st century.

I think that a chat with him will open my mind to completely new horizons.

He may also like to see my car designs!  My 5-year-old crayon drawings may yet see the light of day…