Bisnow Q&A: JLL's Peter Riguardi On His Promotion To Chairman
JLL’s Peter Riguardi has been promoted to chair and president of the brokerage’s New York Tri-State region business, a new position Peter says was essentially “created on a legal pad” just for him.
In his new role, Peter (snapped above with former Council Speaker Christine Quinn) will be responsible for all of JLL’s business lines in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. To find out what he plans to do in his new position, Bisnow spoke with Peter about what’s on JLL’s radar for the near future, and what it's been like bringing JLL to its position in the Tri-State market.
Bisnow: What does this promotion mean to you? How will your responsibilities and day-to-day be different at the new job?
Peter Riguardi: The title and the promotion are very meaningful within JLL, so it’s always a pleasure to be recognized by one’s peers, and to be recognized within JLL is a huge honor for me. I’ve had a tremendous opportunity at this firm and it’s been a great place for me, so it’s a pleasure to be recognized with the chairman title.
As far as what I’m doing, not much has changed. I spend most of my time working on significant client endeavors and significant projects in the Tri-State area, and I spend a fair amount of time on developing our strategy for our business here and dealing with any recruitment that is involved in that strategy.
I also have a terrific partner, Steve Schlegel, who’s our COO. He makes sure the business runs efficiently and meets its commitments and budgets.
I think what has changed however, is that I’m going to get a little closer to some of our other businesses, like our corporate solutions business and our investment sales business, than I might’ve been in the past.
Bisnow: What do you have planned for the future? Do you have any hard targets you’re trying to meet, or are you still figuring that out?
Peter Riguardi: Our goals as an organization are always to grow our profits, not just the business. So in growing the profits it’s always important to continue to challenge ourselves to be more efficient, to take advantage of technology and service our clients better, and to have new initiatives with our clients. That’s always at the forefront of where we are.
I think for the next few months and years we’re guarded about the economy. So we’re starting to make sure that we’re thinking about the effect of the economy on the real estate marketplace here in the Tri-State area—how it affects our clients and how we can inoculate them to changes in the marketplace. We want to make sure we’re prepared and ready for whatever the marketplace brings us.
Bisnow: Going back a bit, what’s it been like getting to where you are now?
Peter Riguardi: When I came here in 2002, I had no idea we’d ever be where we are now. If I’d said out loud this was my target, that would’ve been a lie. It’s been an unbelievable success story for JLL and our people, and having the opportunity to service such exciting and interesting clients has been fantastic. But what has been most rewarding was working with all these talented people along the way.
When you read about deals in the papers, all you see are the names of the companies. You don’t see much talk about all the great people that make these transactions happen, not just the senior people but all the support people on both our side and the client side. So having made so many outstanding relationships along the way is probably the most gratifying part about it.
What’s also been impressive is that each time we sort of stop and say "how are we doing," we’ve never been overwhelmed and we’re always willing to take on a new challenge. So I think that’s really in the DNA of JLL and myself and our team, to take on new challenges and see how far we can push it.
Bisnow: Anything else you’d care to add?
Peter Riguardi: It’s just one of those things that happens every now and then that really works for both sides. Sort of like Derek Jeter and the Yankees. Would Derek Jeter have been as good if he didn’t play for the Yankees, and would the Yankees have been as good without Derek Jeter? I think the answer to both is probably no, and I kind of feel the same about myself and JLL.