Have an informational phone call with a Senior Analyst at a Decent sized Investment Group

Hey all,

I need some advice as I have a phone call with a senior analyst at a decent sized Real Estate Investment/Property Management firm (focuses on Senior housing/Multi-family/office properties mostly) for informational purposes Friday. I am starting to feel the heat as he responded with a little less time than planned to prep. I am relatively green in the field (1 year CRE experience) but am looking for any advice on what types of questions to focus on/how to potentially impress him with for a potential analyst interview.

Just to throw out my pitfalls so they are out in the open and I get the most helpful responses possible. I am looking for what information to volunteer or perhaps steer away from as well.

-I have some modeling experience but am by no means a god or do complicated modeling.
-I have a general knowledge base of what the firm does but nothing past there

All advice/critiques help.

Comments (5)

Jan 4, 2018


Jan 4, 2018

How is his firm is capitalized (do they have a fund, or syndicate on each deal, etc.)?

How are their typical deals capitalized? (does his firm take an LP or GP position)?

If the group takes a GP position and is truly an operator, how do they manage property operations on day-to-day?

What markets are they focused on?

What is their average deal profile (size, equity amounts, property vintage)?

What is their investment strategy (core, value add, opportunistic)?

How did he get to his current position? What was his background and what advice could he offer to someone like you?

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Best Response
Jan 4, 2018

Do some last minute googling on the company and the person you're meeting with. Try to find his facebook, instagram, linkedin, etc. to find a couple of things you have in common. Don't be weird about it when you meet him, but if he's a big fan of golf, for instance, and you also golf, be sure to somehow bring up golf when you're talking. If you're in the same fraternity or something, be sure to bring up something you accomplished in your fraternity, etc. If you have absolutely nothing in common, find something about him that sounds interesting. Maybe he had a weird major. Maybe he's from a town you've visited. Maybe his college won a title recently, or lost a big game, etc. This isn't really related to the job or to real estate, but it's definitely related to getting hired.

One thing I would definitely ask him about is the firm's focus, because Senior Housing, Multi-family, and Office are wildly varying focuses. You can ask what the rationale behind that is and then follow into how that affects company structure. Are there three main silos in the company? Would a new analyst get the opportunity to touch all three product types? If not, do you get to pick your product type or do you get assigned? If you don't like your product type, can you switch? What product type did he start in? Does he like that? Why does he like that? Etc.

Try to position your "weaknesses" as opportunities for improvement. Does the firm offer Argus or Excel training, either formalized or informal. Tell him that you have experience but want to use this opportunity to continue to get better. Ask him for advice.

Always remember that you want to sound intelligent and like you can do the job, but this isn't the CEO you're meeting with. This guy is just doing you a favor, and if he likes you, he'll continue to do you favors whether it's with his company or otherwise. Don't be a pussy either - at the end, ask him what he thinks the right opportunity for you would be at his firm. Don't ask if there is one, that's a yes or no question and chances are he doesn't do the hiring. You're looking for him to guide you more than give you something. Ask him if he knows anyone else you should talk to. You're building a network here and he can help you connect some of the dots.

PM me if you want to practice. I might have some time late today or early tomorrow morning.

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Jan 4, 2018

"This isn't really related to the job or to real estate, but it's definitely related to getting hired." << Can't stress enough how important this is. People make decisions based off of emotion--generally speaking. To the extent that you can associate with yourself with things the person you're interacting with likes, the more they'll associate those positive feelings with you.

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Jan 4, 2018
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