Our final Newcastle upon Tyne lunch of 2019 at Jesmond Dene House had a great turn out for our guest speaker, Duncan Young, the room was filled with his professional peers and a supportive ambience.
For those that follow local news, you will be aware that Duncan has had a very challenging two years that has done a very good job of eclipsing a successful career spanning over 30 years.
It was a brave move of Duncan to agree to speak in front of the Exclusive lunch audience but the Q&A format hosted by Michael Grahamslaw allowed Duncan an opportunity to reflect on the career highs, touch on the lows and demonstrate his resilience.
Duncan took us back to his somewhat idyllic childhood growing up in Amble; his family stories revealed a close network built around vibrant characters. Whilst his elder brother went off to Oxford and followed his father into a career in law, a young Duncan was less certain where his career future lay before completing a degree in estate management that led to his first role with a rural estate agent.
Happier and simpler times for sure, covering the wilds of Northumberland in a ford popular and engaging in hearty lunches with the lady of the house was all part of the job.
As the property landscape began to change Duncan moved to General Accident, during his time with the corporate giant he delivered the highest sales figures in the UK from the office on Gosforth High Street. Through the boom and bust years of the late 80’s and early 90’s this must have been quite an achievement.
Riding on the wave of this success, Duncan went on to set up Sanderson Young in 1997, however his business decisions were not always in his best interests and 2007 brought significant changes in the property sector that have had an impact to this day and certainly made his own business model harder to steer.
Duncan was very open in his telling of his business success and mistakes, despite everything he remains positive and focussed on a sector that has delivered him high’s and lows across a lifelong career. He is clearly not ready to walk away from the property sector but when he does he will be found on a gorgeous Greek island selling watermelons possibly or maybe just replicating his own Father’s twilight years but with rather better Rose.
Our thanks to Duncan Young and Michael Grahamslaw for the Q&A.
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