Betsy Wong

Betsy is a Chartered Surveyor specialising in Commercial Real Estate.  After she graduated from university, she started her graduate programme with Lambert Smith Hampton.  Since then, she has worked in a number of national property consultancy firms and funds in London and Cambridge before she decided to become an independent consultant in commercial real estate.  She is FRICS and has recently joined the Regional Board of RICS for the East of England and has also become an Ambassador for the RICS Inspire project. 

Betsy is very passionate about her work.  She always enjoys doing what she is doing.  She specialised in commercial real estate because she loves the variety and diversity of the work and there is no two days are the same.  The day could start off with looking at property refurbishment and end with providing annual strategic budget review for the client.

What prompted Betsy to become an independent consultant was the challenge.  Betsy always looks for the next challenge and opportunity. 

Whilst she was looking after client’s portfolio, she was involved in organisational structure, policy, compliance and resources management for the consultancy firms that she worked for and she thoroughly enjoyed it.  Then she started to think how she could get a job to have all these elements and utilise all these skills and experience to help her clients and their companies to achieve more.

Betsy said, ‘It was quite daunting to become independent as I was so used to have support from the corporate structure, but I was very lucky to have lots of professional support from my peers, contacts and friends.  The biggest challenge is the unknown but with all the help and advice, I found the process was very enjoyable and exciting.  Of course, to position yourself in a competitive market is not easy but networking helps.’ 

The surveying industry has changed a lot and is constantly changing at a very fast pace because of social, economic and environmental factors.  In the recent years I see that there are many new talents from all different backgrounds, both men and women, and I have worked with many successful and inspiring women during my career.

Betsy also found the INSPIRE project very rewarding.  The Inspire project is to help tackle the skills gap as with 53% of the current RICS membership aged 50 and over, and the global demand for development increasing, it is important to ensure that there is a future pipeline of talent. The project also aims to engage more school-age young people to consider a career in surveying.  As an Ambassador, Betsy attended school workshops and shared her expertise and experience with young people to inspire them surveying as their future career. 

As to advice to other women in Betsy’s position, be yourself and be confident. Personality, mentality and skillset matter. There are plenty of opportunities for both men and women.  Once you have landed with the opportunity, work it and aim high.

Betsy and other RICS Inspire Ambassadors at a school event this summer

Quick Fire Q & A:

What does a typical day look like for you?

There is no ‘typical’ day.  I could be doing consultancy work one day, day-to-day surveying job the next day.   That keeps me fresh and inspired.

What is your advice to other women in your position?

Be yourself and be confident. Personality, mentality and skillset matter. There are plenty of opportunities for both men and women.  Once you have landed with the opportunity, work it and aim high.

How has the industry/sector changed during your career?

Yes I think our industry has changed and is constantly changing at  a very pace.  I have worked with many successful and inspiring women during my career.  In the recent years I can also see that there are many new talents from all different backgrounds, both men and women, and I am proud and pleased to see many young women joining our industry and are thrived to be successful.  

Tell us about yourself and your business (how did you get started?)

I am a Chartered Surveyor for nearly 20 years and have become Fellow Member of RICS few years ago.  I have set up my consultancy business in 2017 after spending years working in a corporate environment. 

What inspired you to start your own business?

CHANGE and CHALLENGE are the real driving force for me to start my own consultancy business. 

How did you come up with the idea for your business?

I specialise in commercial real estate and always enjoy doing what I am doing.  But I also enjoy involved in organisational structure, policy, compliance and resources management, therefore I started to think how I can get a job to have all these elements.  I want to utilise my skills and experience to help my clients and their companies to achieve their goals.  I was also at the point of my career that I need more challenges, so I took a leap and became an independent consultant.

What challenges did you face when setting up your own business?

I was very lucky to have lots of professional support from my peers, contacts and friends.  The biggest challenge is the unknown but with all the help and advice, I found the process was very enjoyable and exciting. 

What do you think the biggest barrier is to growing your business?

To position yourself in a competitive market is not easy but networking helps. 

How important it is to have an established network when setting up your business?

Very important to have an established network as you don’t know when your skillset will become useful and handy for your clients.

Twitter: @Betsywong 17

LinkedIn: Betsy Wong

You can find out more about the RICS Inspire Ambassadors programme and volunteer here: 

https://www.rics.org/uk/surveying-profession/contribute/inspire-future-surveyors/