Industry expert, serial entrepreneur and chairman of West One Loans, Duncan Kreeger, provides his thoughts and opinion in the “Trials and Tribulations of an Entrepreneur”.
Recently, various friends and acquaintances have come to me seeking some career advice – or a job. Some of them are interested in jobs for their kids. No surprise there. These are desperate times for young jobseekers who might have a degree, but don’t have any experience. There are too few vacancies and too many graduates (all of whom are burdened with debt) and conditions for this ‘damned generation’ are only likely to worsen. I read last year that there were 80 graduates applying for every job. Nasty.
Unfortunately, too few of them are considering the sort of avenues that offer decent prospects. I get the impression many of them would rather work in comfy places like the BBC, in posh management consultancies, or in fluffy PR roles.
They might do better to consider working in the bridging industry as a broker or with a lender. The industry is growing and there are jobs going – West One Loans is certainly expanding headcount at the moment.
I started in broking myself. If you’re capable and you work hard, then promotion can be astonishingly rapid. It’s also a great route to owning your own business, as I discovered.
As well as being sociable and well paid, my experiences in broking also helped formulate many of the maxims by which I run West One Loans now. For instance, it was then that I discovered how quickly I wanted proc fees that I’d earned. West One Loans now pays proc fees immediately – on the day the deal completes, we send them by same-day-transfer. Other lenders – the ones who haven’t worked at the coalface – take weeks to pay.
If you are 21, ambitious, want a chance to make friends and money then there can be no contest. Forget about becoming a novelist, rock star, reporter, TV presenter, artist or fashion designer. Showbiz is no longer the passport to the good life. Just ask Joe McElderry.
Instead, get a trainee position in the bridging industry.
Ignore the snobs – this is where the action is.
Duncan Kreeger is Chairman of West One Loans