Five Minutes With Tom McNally...

Madison Lincoln's co-founder tells us what's happening with senior hires in real estate

Tom McNally co-founded Madison Lincoln in 2020, having identified a need for a boutique real estate executive search firm that delivers material value to organisations.

How are current market conditions affecting senior recruitment?

Because many real estate companies are ‘waiting and seeing’, there’s a danger they won’t be prepared when things start to pick up. The problem is that we’ll see many firms get into a pattern of ‘desperate recruitment: they need to hire someone and quickly, choosing from a pool of available candidates rather than headhunting the best person for the job. As a result, they could be repeating the same process within the year.

The minimum time to hire senior talent is five months. Companies should be planning by looking at succession forecasting, talent loss and mapping who’s in the market.

Which skills will continue to be important for real estate leaders?

Leadership means something different today than it did 20 years ago. The ability to connect with others and lead in a more collaborative way will continue to be essential. Tech skills will become increasingly important for those taking on senior roles in our industry.

How did you get into Real Estate Recruitment?

With a degree in Finance and Business, the aim was always to get into accountancy or banking. I worked at JP Morgan after graduating and was spending too much time on Excel for my liking, so I started to think about other industries. I decided on recruitment and began to think about which sector would be most interesting. Real Estate appealed because you can tangibly see the fruits of someone’s labour. For example, when I place a Development Director it’s then incredibly exciting to see the resulting buildings and schemes.

What’s a common misconception about what you do?

Everyone calls it executive search, but we see ourselves as a retained business partner. We have a unique insight into the nuances of our clients’ businesses and the roles they need to develop and fill. This means we can communicate the opportunities to candidates more effectively and attract the right people for the business.

What’s next for Madison Lincoln?

I started a renewables desk 12 years ago when it was in its infancy, placing people within solar, wind and wave power. Recent Government pressure has created a huge demand for renewables, generating a huge opportunity for us with both extensive real estate and renewables experience.

We’re going to see new teams with varied experience to harness the opportunities of renewables, hiring from different sectors. This will change the face of the real estate industry which, up until recently, has been very traditional. These will be very exciting times.

Back to News & Insights
Working From: 91 Wimpole St, Marylebone, London W1G 0EF
Registered Address: 71-75 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London WC2H 9JQ
Copyright © Madison Lincoln