Do you believe in luck? If so, how would you explain it?

Luck is simply the intersection of preparation and opportunity combined with the courage to seize the opportunity. Also, it helps tremendously to be industriously out and about seeking opportunity. Waiting for opportunity to knock is not a particularly smart plan. As the saying goes, the harder (and smarter) I work, the luckier I get.

What makes a person a good operator?

You are using operator in the sense of someone in the business of selling, purchasing, exchanging, renting, or leasing real estate. It’s really the same as being good at anything. You do the deep work to learn the ins and outs of your field and all you can about the surrounding fields, you don’t cut corners or skate or take the “easy” way out (often the hardest in the long term!). You never stop learning, always ask questions, you learn to operate at both ground level and 30,000 feet i.e. tactical and strategic, short term AND long term.  You continuously hone your Critical Thinking Skills, you develop your ability to see and understand systems.

What makes a good developer?

A lot of the same traits covered re “What makes a good operator”. Add vision, relentless attention to detail, fortitude, resilience, patience/art of the long view, enduring enthusiasm, deep wells of energy, courage, and a deep understanding of finance and market dynamics. Development is a risky business with lots of capital at stake and often a developer must advance substantial personal funds and sign personally on a construction loan. If you are using OPM (Other People’s Money), you must embrace the skillset necessary to raise money and to successfully interact with your investors. You can hire folks to do this but they generally take a BIG cut.

Is a manager the same thing as an operator?

“A manager is someone who is responsible for overseeing a team or department, setting goals and strategies, making decisions, and delegating tasks to others. Managers often have formal authority and are accountable for the performance of their team or department.” That was written by AI!

How do you select which books you’re going to read?

A lot of serendipity to it; sometimes I go in search of a tome on a given topic because I’m wrestling with a problem in that field, I get recommendations and often a book I’m reading refers to another book which I seek out.

As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier