Informational Interview

Informational interviews are a great way to get insight into a particular field your interested in. You not only get a better understanding of the career, you also get advice, and experience for future interviews. Meeting with professionals is a great way to network and gain perspective into the business world.

Name: Patrick Lynch
Title/Position:Senior Director, Valuation & Advisory
Company: Cushman and Wakefield
Industry: Appraisal

I interviewed Patrick Lynch, he went to a small school in upstate New York for a soccer scholarship. He received a liberal arts degree and moved to Colorado after graduation. He then began working with his father in business and from there began working at HSBC bank. He is now one of the two heads of appraisal for Cushman and Wakefield. He works with two others to manage all of Minnesota, North and South Dakota, a small amount of Iowa, and western Wisconsin.

He gave me a lot if insight into the world of appraisal. As an appraiser, there isn’t a “normal day in the life”. Appraisers bid on office buildings you want to appraise. So you can bid on a bunch of office buildings, and if you get all the buildings you bid on you can be super busy that month and the next month you don’t have as many so you aren’t as busy. Your job is so independent, you could be on the road visiting office buildings, working from home, or at your office. Since appraisal is so flexible you can choose what hours you want to work and where you want to work. Pat said that he works with his partner check each others work before it gets sent off.

As an appraiser you have to communicate through email and phone a lot to get all the information you need to write your reports. You receive and request for proposal (RFP), and send in your bid. Usually appraisers get 2-3 RFPs a day and can bid on as many as they like, but there is the chance you could get them all, or none. They have anywhere from 3-9 proposals they actually get the bid and are working on all at the same time. From there they look at the building’s incomes, expenses, and market rent. Then they write the report based on their findings. Excel and Word are the main tools used in creating their reports but they also use Argus. They then convert their report into a PDF file and get it reviewed by a coworker, then send it to Cushman and Wakefield’s main appraisal office in Chicago.

Overall, the interview was really helpful. Pat helped me fully understand what it means to be an appraiser. He gave me a lot of great insight into the business world and what it would take for me to be successful in the field. I am really glad I had this opportunity. I was really surprised how independent the job is. I chose to talk to an appraiser because I had heard a little about the job requirements and was very interested in it, now I feel more confident in taking more classes to go into appraisal later in life.