The #IAMWOMAN campaign is a joint effort between our sister company Madison Berkeley and Black Women in Real Estate (BWRE) to attract more young black females into the real estate sector and retain them.

“The real estate industry has terrible female representation generally” says Nina Zeilerbauer, board director of Madison Lincoln and co-founder of real estate recruitment firm Madison Berkeley. “It stands at just 13%. Our industry is white, middle class and overwhelmingly male and we are working with Hanna Afolabi founder of BWRE (Black Women in Real Estate) to attract a more diverse workforce into our industry. Without it, the sector will stagnate because companies want a diverse workforce, but there are so few candidates who meet that criteria.”

Each day this week the #IAMWOMAN campaign run by @BWRE and @MadisonBerkeley will share a young #womenofcolour’s journey into the UK #realestate industry. How they got there, what they do, why they love it and most importantly how you can do it too.

To follow the campaign, please go to https://www.madisonberkeley.com/i-am-woman/ and https://www.bwre.org/

For International Women’s Day 2022, Board Director Nina Zeilerbauer was interviewed by The Guardian to discuss gender bias, discrimination and stereotyping plus how to improve gender equality in the workplace. Nina discusses these issues from a real estate point of view - Read Here

For more information, on exploring diversity and inclusion focused recruitment campaigns within real estate, please email info@madisonlincoln.com

In the article, Nina talks about the current state of play, what more can be done and shares a number of interesting statistics and facts.


For more information, on exploring diversity and inclusion focused searches within real estate, please email info@madisonlincoln.com

For 2021 and 2022, Madison Lincoln would like to support Tiny Tickers, a charity that is very close to the heart of one of our board members Clare Coe.

A London newspaper recently picked up Clare’s story (https://www.mylondon.news/news/health/london-mum-dads-final-kiss-20973106) and we would like to continue to increase awareness of the charity which aims to improve the early detection and care of babies with serious heart conditions.

Furthermore, here are two links of two fundraising events to help raise funds for the charity.



Article written by Rachel Maguire (Co-Founder of The Job Share Pair – https://www.thejobsharepair.com/)

Job sharing is a hugely misunderstood working practice, and is certainly a rarity in the real estate sector.  The unknown.  Let us help with that…In simple terms, job sharing is the undertaking of a full-time role, carried out by two (or more) people. Typically one partner works the first part of the week (Mon-Weds) and the other the latter part (Weds-Fri). Job sharing is not the same as part time work, where the needs of the business are on hold for a couple of days. Job sharing enables full time (plus some) coverage to dedicate to the needs of a high volume, fast paced, intellectually demanding and challenging role. It is favoured by many in senior positions who would struggle to achieve the needs of a position, alone, in 5 days. 

What are the benefits?

The benefits are more obvious to those undertaking a job share. You achieve true work life balance and a forced separation from work on your days off. Your opportunity to burnout is far reduced in line with this. You continue to learn and develop within your unique microteam and you are able to maintain a stretching career in a high impact role. 

So many find they are at a point in their lives where flexibility is a must. Perhaps due to childcare, eldercare, health needs or (our favourite!) those who are wanting to fire on all cylinders in every aspect of life, ambitious career people who also have hobbies, finding joy outside of work, looking after themselves in the process, able to commit to work on their dedicated days with a clear head and a refreshed attitude. 

And for business? What’s in it for us?

There is a broad untapped pool of talent out there seeking out flexible ways of working. By offering flexibility you attract and retain key talent who may not be in a position (or have the inclination) to work the classic, outdated, 40 hour working week. Organisations are short sighted not to consider the cost implications of recruiting new talent, upskilling and the cost of lost productivity if individuals reach the point of burnout and flexible working options aren’t considered. By encouraging job sharing, businesses benefit from two minds, two sets of skills and experiences, two problem solvers and two networks in one role. There is no Wednesday hump day or Friday lull – a job sharer has 2 or 3 days to achieve, self manage and report back their productivity to their partner. What you gain as an organisation is motivated, productive loyal employees, committed to the success of your business goals. 

But can you really job share a senior role?

Job sharing is not just for administrative, junior level roles without team responsibility. Here are some case studies to illustrate the point. 

Still not convinced?

As Sophie Smallwood (co-founder of fantastic job share matching website roleshare.com) so brilliantly identifies, doctors, nurses, consultants, midwives job share job share, handing over to one another at numerous points in the day and week. If our lives are in their hands and they can do it, surely we can too.  

How we can help you

Job sharing means change. A change to the way that you have operated previously and a change to the business. In times of change we need to plan. What are the practicalities? What does the day to day look like? Who will lead on what? How will we handover? How do we manage performance? How do you ensure that you have coverage across all work and client interactions? The list of unknowns is endless. At The Job Share Pair, we demystify the nuts and bolts of job sharing and provide you with all the tools you need to make it work. Having worked as job sharers ourselves at Board level as HR Directors, we understand the day to day logistics of how to manage this transition, plan for various eventualities and set your job share partnership and business up for success. Our mission and passion is to make job sharing accessible for all. We hope that this introduction to job sharing has opened your eyes to considering its multiple benefits to business, clients, individuals and our communities. 

Still have more questions on job sharing, please contact Hannah and Rachel – hello@thejobsharepair.com

If you want to explore how to hire a job pair at executive level, please contact us – info@madisonlincoln.com

Are you looking for something different? Do you want your voice to be heard and have the ability to make the difference? Perhaps you are looking to move away from a traditional executive search business or maybe you are looking to move from contingency into retained work, we want to hear from you.

As a people business, we strive to want to find the next individual who can drive, challenge and distrupt the real estate executive search market. No search is the same and sometimes alternative solutions need to be found to help our clients. We like to be creative, agile and dynamic in finding talent.

We are passionate about real estate and we want our employees to feel the same. Follow the market, soak up the news and get close to the talent.

During 2021, we would like to add an experienced consultant to the business along with a researcher to help on future assignments. Interested? Please make contact and lets arrange a call.

+44 (0) 208 194 8248


What a year!! If you had asked me in January 2020, how to predict Madison Lincoln’s first year of trading, I would never have imagined a pandemic and the economy falling off a cliff.

On Tuesday 10th March 2020, Madison Lincoln officially opened for business. We were set to launch on Monday 9th but the sudden announcement of ‘Black Monday’ changed everything. Within those 24 hours, we spoke to many friends, family, and confidants and the general consensus was, ‘go ahead with the launch tomorrow, it might be a difficult couple of months but it will be fine.’ Thursday 12th March was my last day in the office until August! After a difficult first week, I spoke to a good friend who happens to be a Chief Risk Officer with an international bank and who had been following the pandemic very closely. His recommendation was to put the new business on hold and maybe relaunch in October/November time or take the year off!!

Despite that useful recommendation, we pushed ahead with the new venture. Over spring and summer, business development was difficult and month after month, the redundancies kept coming. Despite all of this, we remained resilient and determined and fortunately, we won some mandates. Whilst the initial business plan and subsequent business plans went in the bin, there were lots of lessons to be learnt and it gave us time to refine and develop our exciting recruitment services.

As we come to our first birthday, we are extremely grateful for the support and goodwill that we have received from our clients  and partners. With a year gone by, we are more confident that our service is a unique offering to our existing and future client base. Furthermore, we have observed with interest that our competitors have monitored our business model and have subsequently looked to duplicate it.

Moving forward, we have more exciting plans for the rest of 2021 and beyond. As the year progresses, we will look to expand and continue to pursue exciting talent to join our business.

There will be more challenges ahead but 2020 has given us the strength and determination to succeed. We will continue to offer our clients strong, agile and creative recruitment solutions.

Madison Lincoln is proud to celebrate women’s achievements.  From challenge comes change, so let’s all choose to challenge and help create an inclusive world.

For International Women’s Day, Tom McNally (Managing Director and Co-Founder of Madison Lincoln) asked Clare Coe and Nina Zeilerbauer (Co-Founders of Madison Berkeley and Board Directors of Madison Lincoln) if they would be so kind to be interviewed for this important day. The transcript is below:

Tom: Hi Clare and Nina, how are you both?

Nina: Great, thank you.

Tom: Thank you both for your time today and to let me interview you for IWD, it must feel strange being on the other side of the table and being interviewed rather than being the interviewer.

Clare: It does feel a bit unusual.

Tom: With IWD coming up soon, I thought it would be great to speak to you both about your careers, your inspirations, your challenges and your experience of being a leader in real estate.

So talk me through your career journey to now from school onwards…..

Clare: I had an interest in property from an early age as my father worked in the property industry. After A levels, I went to study Land Management at University of Reading and began the journey into the industry at an early age. I graduated in 2009 which was in the middle of the GFC and there were hardly any graduate opportunities. I was fortunate enough to join Strutt & Parker on the graduate scheme close to home, after carrying out a summer internship with them the year before.  I really enjoyed the transactional and agency side of real estate, and I relocated to London and I ended up speaking to a real estate recruitment company who subsequently offered to hire me as a recruiter. And as they say the rest is history.

Nina: I studied History and Politics at Oxford Brookes and once I left University I followed the bright lights of London – having grown up in rural Scotland I always dreamt of moving South and experiencing life in one of the world’s greatest cities! I am a people person so recruitment seemed an obvious move and I joined the UK’s most successful IT Recruitment firm.

After 5 years with a company who provided a great foundation and training in the industry, I wanted to marry this experience with something I was passionate about. I have always loved architecture and buildings, and how the built world relates to the communities and people who live in them – Real Estate recruitment made that match. I worked closely with Clare for a number of years and we increasingly came to recognise how closely our future aspirations were aligned, as well as our approach to work and life, which led to the founding of Madison Berkeley in 2017.

Tom: As we know the real estate industry is dominated by white males and typically from the same background. Do you ever feel that you have been discriminated against or held back in your career?

Clare: As a woman, being surrounded by males your whole career does give you confidence issues, just because you don’t shout as loud, it doesn’t mean your opinion isn’t valid. As you advance in your career, this is something you learn to deal with but it is a constant challenge. I understand that lots of women in real estate agree with me and the majority of women struggle to sell themselves compared to their male counterparts.

Nina: I’m very fortunate and have never felt personally discriminated against in the companies I’ve worked for, however as we deal with recruitment for a huge variety of other businesses time and time again we come up against the kind of barriers that other women experience. The gender pay gap remains a huge issue – less so when women move firms and are able to compete on the open market for a fair salary, but women often lag behind men when it comes to achieving equitable pay rises and promotion within one firm. We regularly speak to women with the same number of years’ experience, and sometimes the same job titles as male counter parts, but who are on significantly lower salaries and who receive smaller bonuses. In my early career clients would often ask a female candidates marital status before deciding on whether to interview them, which fortunately very rarely occurs now but is not unheard of.

Tom: What do you see as the most significant barrier to female leadership?

Nina: In the recent past requests for flexible working hours, and regular days working from home has always been seen as a specific female issue, usually relating to childcare and I am sure has acted as a significant barrier to promotion and woman rising to leadership positions. This has either been through having less ‘facetime’ in the office with senior decision makers, and a historic perception that when people are working from home they are less effective. One of the positives of the lockdowns and enforced WFH is that this has been turned on its head, with some workforces being even more effective from home, and no matter what someone’s gender is, an employers approach to flexible working policies in the future is now a key issue for all employees.

Tom: How important is your role (Or what do you think your role is) in guiding organisations looking to change their culture and be more inclusive and diverse?

Clare: We lead by example and ensure that we practice what we preach. Diversity is currently at the top of the agenda for our clients and this is something we strive to provide in all of our shortlists.

Tom: We are finally seeing some female leaders take senior positions in the real estate industry like Stephanie Hyde (JLL), Rita-Rose Gagné (Hammerson) and Helen Gordon (Grainger).

But what can businesses do to ensure they are cultivating the next generation of female leaders?

Nina: To have a future generation of female leaders businesses need a diverse talent pool coming up through the ranks, and too many industries attract far more male graduates than females. Companies need to engage with the future employment market by working with Schools and Universities to highlight the career possibilities for women that exist within their firms, and showcase inspirational role models to help drive female graduates to their industry sectors.

It’s also important to really engage with your recruitment partners when trying to attract new talent, and work closely with them to ensure your business and brand is being marketed in the right way to females at all stages in the process. A badly worded interview question can do a lot of damage to the way your business is perceived!

Tom: What are the advantages for organisations to have women in leadership and decision making roles?

Nina: If you don’t mind I’m going to spin that question on its head – if we asked anyone what the disadvantages were to having women in leadership and decision making roles I can’t imagine a single answer that wasn’t a generalisation, and the same is true of the above – any answer I gave would be a generalisation or stereotypical!  Gender should be irrelevant to someone’s suitability to do a role, and in any given situation it could be a female or male who is best suited to lead a team or organisation. The issue goes back to talent pool, and also women having the confidence to put themselves forward for these roles – if leaders are picked within a proper meritocracy, and no weighting was given to gender when promotions were made then businesses and all employees would feel the benefits.

Tom: Is there a female leader that you admire?  Why?

Clare: Karren Brady. I have followed her career for some time and listened to her speak at an recruitment event a few years ago. I think she is so inspiring. She became the youngest ever Managing Director of a PLC in the UK and became the first woman to hold such a position at the top of English football. She is an inspiration to all women, not just those women working in a male dominated industry like us.  She is committed to helping other women follow her path and instrumental in persuading businesses to see the benefits of putting more women on their boards. A quote of hers that has always stuck with me: “You can’t determine where you start in life, but you can determine where you end up.”

Nina: Kate Adie for me. I grew up hugely admiring her, she was always so courageous and calm and had a career she was absolutely passionate about, even when it led her into incredibly dangerous situations. She entered a very male dominated industry already when going into journalism, and to then become a celebrated war journalist really broke the mould! She led the way for others to follow her, and I’m sure inspired the likes of Emily Mathias to follow her and have such successful careers.

Tom: In your view, what are some of the characteristics of a good leader?

The ability to motivate and inspire those they lead, having clear goals and in a business environment a set of brand values that they can articulate, and who demonstrates integrity to those values.

Tom: If you could go back in time – what advice would you give your younger self at the start of your career?

Clare: Do something you are genuinely passionate about and interested in! Schools and Universities are very good at putting the blinkers up so you follow a traditional route. It’s ok to break out of any moulds set for you. You will be successful doing something you enjoy and genuinely believe in!

Tom: What is the biggest business risk you’ve ever taken?

Nina: Setting up Madison Berkeley for sure. Clare and I were in very secure, well paid positions at the time and it was a big leap to go it alone! We were settled and relatively happy but both had an underlying belief that we could create a business based on our own values that we could be really proud of, and which could provide something new to our client base. We could see that there was a gap in the market for a recruitment firm who genuinely act as a partner to their clients, and who offer a very tailored and knowledgeable service. Three years later and we are both sure it’s the best decision we ever made!

Tom: What big business win are you most proud of?

Nina: As opposed to one single thing I am most proud of our partnerships with clients, who we are growing and evolving with. Looking back to my reasons for going into the property sector I can now look around London and know that our business has helped source Real Estate Professionals for schemes like Kings Cross and Battersea Power Station, which have changed the face of the city. We cherish and care about our relationships, and aspire to continually help our clients find solutions for difficult and challenging hires.

Tom: What has you the most excited about the future?

Clare: We have been established for just over 3 years now and it is a pivotal time in our growth. It’s such an exciting time for Madison Berkeley and we have lots of things to be positive about.

We are passionate about further building upon our long-term relationships with our clients and candidates, and helping them navigate the rapidly evolving world of work. The pandemic has hugely accelerated trends such as a more flexible approach to work, and this will have big repercussions – with some businesses adapting faster than others. We feel positive changes will be a more diverse workforce and promotion prosects finally becoming more equal.

Most of our work is through referrals, which is something we are very proud of and we are really enthused about our network continuing to grow. We will also be expanding our own team this year, bringing on additional like-minded consultants with real estate backgrounds to join the Madison Berkeley team. We can’t wait to get back into the West End in an office environment later this year and of course, we have the exciting partnership with Madison Lincoln as a new service to offer our clients.

Want to know more about Clare and Nina’s business, here is the link – www.madisonberkeley.com

As the real estate sector looks to evolve and diversify, we understand the importance in selecting the right Non-Executive Director/Chair to ensure the successful execution of strategic goals. The expectations placed on boards by both shareholders and external commentators are higher than ever.

Non-Executive Directors are vital to any organisation as they bring specialist expertise and valuable insights whilst being independent from the management of the company and thus makes them ideal for monitoring and evaluating a company’s executive directors. Furthermore, they ensure that companies are well-run, prepared for the future and able to meet those market expectations.

During our search process, we look at capabilities and skills, but also assess the personal attributes of non-executive candidates, to ensure they will provide the right balance of support and inspiration but also rigour and challenge.

To find out how Madison Lincoln, can help with your next non-executive director or chair hire, please contact us at info@madisonlincoln.com or +44 (0) 208 194 8248

Executive Search is the best method for finding and securing talent when there is a defined need. However, for some businesses, executive search does not suit their hiring model. The desire to hire upon opportunity and the ability to move quickly can see businesses tend to hire ex-colleagues, employee referrals or that one CV that gets sent speculatively by a recruiter. Whilst there is some merit in this, it does not allow the business to have enough knowledge on whether they are making a good hiring decision.

So, if you want to recruit on an opportunistic basis, or want to grow fast, I would suggest exploring Talent Monitoring.

So what is Talent Monitoring?

Talent Monitoring is the process of targeted talent being screened and kept in regular contact for a set period of time based on the clients specific requirements.

During the process, the client would be kept up to date regularly with hiring opportunities and information on what is happening in the recruitment market with the competition.

Regular meetings and interviews with the talent are customary, as is the frequency of sharing evaluations and recommendations with the client.

Why use Talent Monitoring?

Whilst the term Talent Monitoring is rarely heard of in the UK and Europe, it is a trusted hiring technique in North America and we expect will become a preferred method of hiring for a significant number of businesses in the UK and Europe very soon.

It is with that foresight we at Madison Lincoln feel prepared and eager to offer such a venture, with each campaign adjusted and tailored to the clients’ requirements.

Our Talent Monitoring project gives employers exclusive access to elite talent who are engaged with Madison Lincoln. By choosing this path, you will not be fighting over top talent as Madison Lincoln will be working exclusively with you and will not be sharing talent found with your direct competition.

Using Talent Monitoring can produce results quickly and we do use an external talent assessment company to help the hiring process if required. 

For more information on how it could work for your business, please contact Tom McNally on 0208 194 8248 or tom@madisonlincoln.com

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