Lets Get Real - Jess Robert

Lets Get Real - Jess Robert

Tuesday 31 August 2021Wed 16 Feb
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What did you do before you joined A&A?

I was a Regional Property Consultant in the UK. I was contracted to an estate agency in Manchester and I would run market reports on properties that were struggling to sell. I would go out to see the property and meet the owner. It was a commission only role so, the transition to a commission only role with Allsopp & Allsopp wasn’t a big step for me. I’m used to having no salary to fall back on.

I loved my job but during Covid, the role turned into a virtual one and I really missed interacting with clients face to face. All meetings were being conducted over virtual calls and I started to look into my options for other roles abroad. So, I started applying for real estate roles in Dubai and Kameron, Recruitment Director at Allsopp & Allsopp got in touch with me to set-up an interview and the rest is history.

Why Dubai?

I had never been to Dubai before and didn’t really know much about it to be honest. To begin with, I was offered a job in Saudi Arabia as a Business Development Manager. I did some research and spoke to someone who worked there who said they went to Dubai on weekends and I thought, well, why not check out what jobs are available in Dubai.

What were your first impressions of Dubai?

I was surprisingly underwhelmed with Dubai when I first stepped off the plane. I must say, I moved in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic and was very stressed with all the PCR tests pre-travel and making sure I had all the documents ready to fly that I think I was in a very different mindset than what I would have liked. I also landed the day I was set to meet the other new starters at Allsopp & Allsopp HQ so I felt very rushed, nervous and I had tunnel vision.

I am glad that my first impression wasn’t as impressive as I had hoped because every single day since, Dubai has wowed me! I feel like I appreciate things so much more as a result. The first time you go for lunch in Atlantis, drink on the Palm Jumeirah and sunbathe on the beach in front of the Burj Al Arab it truly is surreal. The novelty of Dubai certainly hasn’t worn off for me yet, whereas if I had come with such high expectations, I wouldn’t have had the same feelings about the incredible experiences I have now.

If I was to do the move all over again, I would definitely come before the day I was due to start in the office. That was an unfortunate decision on my behalf but was also out of my control due to the travel restrictions that were imposed. I would have liked to have come over a couple of weeks before starting to work to get to know my surroundings and appreciate where I was living. What are your impressions of Dubai now?

After the first two weeks of being here, I was in it for the long run. I have no desire whatsoever to move back home - I’m here for good! This is a job for progression and always offers a new challenge.

What was your first impression of Allsopp & Allsopp?

My first contact with Allsopp & Allsopp was a zoom call with Kameron, and he was so enthusiastic about the company, the role and Dubai. That gave me the feeling that the company was a great place to work and the people who work there are very proud! I want to work somewhere I feel protective over and I want to be in 100% and I got that feeling from Kameron. I then had a second interview with Jo Parker, HR Director and she was incredible. We had a chat - very simple and very down to earth. I didn’t feel like I was in an interview. She was very honest and realistic about the job which put me at ease because I didn’t only want to hear how successful I could be, I wanted to know what it would take to be successful. Jo went through the details of the job, how much hard work I had to put in but also the phenomenal opportunities.

What has been your biggest challenge?

Dealing with the highs and lows of the job has been a challenge. I’m a very resilient person but because I was commision only at home, I thought it would be the same here. I thought that if I didn’t work, I wouldn’t earn but here, it’s different. Here, it is the same concept, however, you can put in so much work and it could take a little longer to get a deal agreed. But, if you continue to work hard and consistently, it pays off.

It has also been interesting to see the number of different personalities and cultures I have come across. I wouldn’t say this has been a big challenge per se because I am such a people person and I find it easy to adapt to the people I am working with but this was a real difference to my clients in my previous job.

What do you miss about home?

There really isn’t anything that I truly miss. I obviously miss my friends and family but that's a given and they’re always only a phone call away - I still speak to them every day. Aside from that, there really isn’t anything that stands out that I miss. There isn’t anything that you can do at home that you can’t do here. It’s also very easy to make friends in Dubai - everyone is in the same boat and has experienced all the feelings you’re feeling which is a huge comfort.

What has been your biggest achievement?

I joined the company as a lettings agent and my biggest achievement was being asked to move into sales almost immediately. I’m currently tracking over target for the year as a sales agent and I’m very proud of that.

3 tips for someone looking to make the move

Give it everything! If things don’t work out, you want to be sat on that plane heading home thinking you have given your all and had the best time! Lose all your expectations - come to Dubai with none and make it your unique journey. Expectations will only cloud your mind. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else!

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