SitusAMC Power Pro: Sabine Clos
Name: Sabine Clos
Title: Vice President, SitusAMC Germany
How I ended up at SitusAMC: I worked at a private bank until it went bankrupt in 2002, and then I took a position at SitusAMC in 2004. This year marks my 18th year with the company.
Lessons learned: First, always be honest with others and yourself and that will help you to avoid making the same mistakes. Second, never blame mistakes on others, because it is always you who are in charge of what happens in your life.
Day-to-day: I work alone as a manager, and we deal with borrowers and lenders and act as the woman or man in the middle. We are located in the Frankfurt office and I work mainly in the office. On a typical day I respond to 150 emails, deal with lots of payments and supervise requests from all sides, like amendments of finance documents. I manage my team, talk to lots of clients, get approvals from lenders for certain things, and oversee cash requests and payment processes. Crucially, I also manage expectations from the borrower and lender side.
Delivering value to our clients: Our clients consist of institutions from the banking sector and private equity throughout the world. Private equity companies can be a borrower, or a lender or a funder. Our borrowers are spread across the property industry, so theoretically, every company could be a borrower to us and every lender could be a client. The value we deliver for them is to manage expectations as an agent in the middle of both the lending and borrowing sides. We need to complete the required paperwork and stay on top of things to avoid getting saddled with a disadvantageous deal. At the end of the day we work in favor of the lending side, so that everyone is in the loop and knows what is going on and what is expected. We add value to both lenders and borrowers by avoiding being in breach of obligations.
Qualities needed for the job: You need to be self-confident and have a bit of experience to better judge what you should and should not do. You also need to be quick to set the right priorities throughout the day, and flexible because the priorities may change frequently. And you need to be a skilled communicator, authoritative in email and online meetings so people trust you to do and say the right thing.
Hometown: I was born and grew up in Frankfurt, Germany. We had a football pitch and a roller-skating rink right in front of the house, so my childhood was quite happy. Of course, I played both football (what the U.S. calls soccer) and roller-skated. At that time, they didn’t have girl’s teams, so I played on some of the first mixed-gender teams in the city. We lived right in the middle of the city of Frankfurt, which is a very nice city, although of course it’s grown much bigger and more hectic since I grew up here.
Biggest strengths: I am a fighter and tend to never give up.
Downtime: I like walking my dog many times a day, at least three or four hours. Only 28 centimeters high, she’s a mix who comes from a shelter in Moscow. She’s probably a border terrier mix. I found out about the shelter through Facebook, and she arrived a year and a half ago. I joined a training club, and through those obedience classes she has learned to sit and walk calmly on the leash and not eat everything in sight. She’s learned not to bark at bicycles and postal carriers. She’s come a long way! She comes with me to the office. Everyone at the office likes having her here. Before I brought her I had to ask every colleague if it was OK and they all said they were happy to have a dog in the office. The great news is that they are still happy. In fact, now they say hello to her before they say hello to me!
Advice to your younger self: I would advise a younger me to be more patient and always try to stay calm. Keep focused and don’t get too hectic.