Being an Estate Manager is one of the top positions you can hold within a private household and is held in very high regard. It is certainly a challenging role, as you will work closely with the owners to ensure their personal plans are executed and duties will vary from day to day.
You might find yourself one day being very hands-on or other days spent doing paperwork in an office, however each day will include taking responsibility for staff management including outdoor teams, budgets, health and safety, security and developing the ongoing financial stability of the estate. Many of the estates managed have wonderful formal gardens and the care and maintenance of these will be paramount.
Each role is unique with many encompassing planning events such as shoots, corporate events and location filming or even weddings. Some roles will be heavily livestock led and will involve supervising their care and manging external contacts such as vets, farriers and regulatory bodies such as DEFRA.
You will enjoy rewarding work and often have the opportunity to live in some of the most beautiful areas of the world, however to be suitable for this role you will have to possess an array of skills including:
Knowledge of farm and/or land management
A can-do and flexible attitude at all times
Total professionalism and unquestionable discretion
Leadership and coaching skills and a willingness to lead by example
Large scale and complex project management abilities
Keen negotiating skills
Strong business and commercial acumen with prior experience in finance, management and IT
Although many Estate Managers begin their careers in hospitality management or come from a farming or Head Gardener background, more and more employers are looking for a degree in land management or farming, although there are always opportunities to start at the bottom and progress through the ranks, it is for example the ideal next step for an experienced Head Gardener, especially with more and more apprenticeships in the sector being offered.
However, one thing is for sure it takes dedication and time to achieve success as an Estate Manager but you will be rewarded by working in an industry where no two roles are the same and you will be able the build a long term and rewarding career.