Hard work and “approachability” – the recipe for success at Caxtons

Leading property consultants Caxtons have promoted two highly experienced and dedicated staff to associate director level. John Sinclair, who joined the firm in 2016, is made Associate Director, Estate and Block Management, while Debbie Preston, who started as a director’s PA 21 years ago, is now Associate Director, HR and IT.

John’s success at Caxtons is a testament to his hard work and dedication. He studied to gain a first-class degree in Building Surveying at the same time as standing in for his head of department.

When he joined Caxtons as a property manager in 2016 with a background in social housing, John had already achieved distinctions in Level 3 and 4 Housing Management from the Chartered Institute of Housing.

Promoted to Senior Property Manager in 2019, John took over the work of the Head of Estate and Block Management during the head’s absence while also studying for his degree from the University College of Estate Management, Reading.

In 2022, John was promoted to Head of Estate and Block Management, focussing on enhancing Caxtons’ service to customers and fostering positive client relationships while delivering service efficiencies.

Now in his new leadership role, John looks forward to driving further innovation in property management, continuing to enhance customer satisfaction and promoting sustainable practices.

Promoted alongside John, Debbie, who joined Caxtons in 2003, says: “My main philosophy throughout my career at Caxtons is that my door is always open and that staff can talk to me about absolutely anything and they do. There isn’t a topic or subject that I haven’t covered in my 21 years at Caxtons.”

She adds: “I make a point of interacting with all staff and at inductions laugh with new colleagues, I am not the HR in a glass house, with glasses on the end of my nose kind of person.”

Debbie spent just a year as a PA when she first joined Caxtons before being invited to train in HR and going on to start the HR department.

Thanks to the many efficiencies Debbie has introduced, she says a large number of filing cabinets were removed! She has overseen creation of a staff handbook, new HR packages for holidays and staff paperwork, the introduction of online training programmes, a review of staff benefits and a new Employee Assistance Programme.

Last year Debbie was appointed Head of IT and started re-organising the company’s IT system and records, “streamlining costs and making sure it is as efficient as possible”.
When she is not at work, Debbie is equally industrious. She spent 20 years as a Director of Music running a large choir, undertakes a wide range of crafts from card and jewellery making to sugar crafting and is a keen gardener, currently growing around 30 varieties of fruit and veg.

Graham Mitchell, FD said, ‘We are delighted to announce the promotion of Debbie Preston and John Sinclair which are well deserved, and on behalf of myself and the whole Board, we congratulate them and wish them every success in their new positions’.


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