The Real life of a Real Developer: In Conversation with Adam Sturdy

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of spending a full day shadowing Adam and getting to learn more about Pinstone from an insider’s perspective. I was positively impressed with the effectiveness of their processes and amazed at how much of an impact those had on the success of the business and the life quality of all those involved. Big thanks to Adam for allowing me to understand how he and his team run Pinstone and for sharing plenty practical takeaways not only with me, but also with the wider Community through this interview.
 

Q1. What’s your background?

Prior to moving into property professionally I worked as a management consultant for a number of leading global companies. This involved working mostly on cross-border projects for global retailers. I come from a family who are all involved in property professionally, although I was an exception. I have never lived in a property without there being an element of a project or value add at some-point during my ownership.

Since 2015 I have worked for Pinstone Group and its associated companies with involvement in a broad number of projects.

Outside of work, I love to travel as much as possible with my family, cling onto my youth with my music tastes (and related behaviour), and tinker with my collection of old VW kombi’s. I’m also obsessed with running and skiing.
 

Q2. Pinstone Group invest directly and indirectly in property through our three core areas: Asset Management, Capital and Development. With a diversified portfolio like yours, which are the main challenges you and your team are faced with?

This would likely be allocation of priority, time and funds across these areas, and getting the balance right.
 

Q3. What have been the three best practices that have allowed you to thrive from an operational perspective?

Think big, even if small - While there are many things that aren’t great about some big companies they are big for a reason; they are typically good at what they do. So I look to follow the best things about these companies including having clear business structure, processes and procedures.

Online first - I love books, but hate paper only. A report/contract/plan is no use if you can’t access it anywhere, and with everything online it can be accessed, shared or referred to at anypoint. Therefore everything should be online first.

Review regularly - Ensure things are not being done for a pointless reason (‘its always been done like this’ ahhhhhh) and always ask the question or question the ask (respectfully, of course!).