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News & opinion

7 SEP. 2018

Ed Nypels: From Benelux to the Himalayas

Ed joined RICS in 2007, after a career as a serial entrepreneur. Ed has many passions in his life from his wife and three adult children to field hockey and mountaineering. He is an extensive traveler and enjoys learning and discovering new places.

Ed has decided to step down from his job at RICS as a Regional Manager for Benelux and his last day at RICS is 21 September.

Hello Ed, can you explain a little bit about your role as a Regional Manager for Benelux and what is a typical day like for you? 

My role is to represent RICS as the leading organisation for professionalism and ethical standards for the real estate sector in the Benelux countries. I do this with our team in Voorburg and with the support of all my other colleagues in Brussels and the UK. A typical day would be spent meeting with members and promoting RICS amongst firms and local authorities while keeping diversity and inclusion in mind. Next to that, I am always busy with event organisation as they play a major role in our recognition plans and satisfaction of our professionals. I try to do my email from 15:00-17:00, mostly from somewhere on the road. Working for RICS has always kept me extremely busy.

What has been your biggest professional success during your time with RICS?

It has been a long journey, but when I started this adventure in 2007 I would have never guessed that in 2018 we would be with 1200 satisfied professionals in Benelux (Benelux has only 24 million inhabitants). And that my work has led to numerous real estate organisations and government agencies now turning to RICS for cooperation on ethical and regulation issues but also for management help in their organisations.

What will you miss the most from your work at RICS? 

I like people and it has always been a pleasure to help and coach professionals in real estate, with attaining the membership or with training for their firms. A successful event also still gives me great pleasure. We built a very successful and friendly team here in the Voorburg office and fortunately, I will probably still be active for RICS in Europe in some way for a few years to keep in touch with all my colleagues and keep the door open to future engagement.

What work are you doing in Benelux that you would like to share with our course leaders?

In my 10 years it has been very challenging to engage graduates from our accredited courses and I am certain course leaders and country managers could work even closer to find new ideas and make the conversion to RICS professionals happen more structurally in the years after graduating (e.g. alumni organisations). It is of course the job of the country manager, but course leaders' insight is vital to make our offer evolve according to demand.  

Advancements in technology are changing each year, what will this development mean for professions such as surveying?

The new technology will change professions in the coming years, but a trusted advisor remains what clients want, also in Proptech and in jobs that will be affected by Proptech. You can use automated models, but you still need someone to explain these models to the client and offer reassurance that the outcome of your work is correct and ethical, enabling society and the investment community to trust the outcomes.

What are the skills and attributes that will make professionals successful in the future in the Netherlands?

Lifelong learning will be even more important, especially after graduating from a course. RICS hopes to cooperate with courses or alumni associations to offer this post-course knowledge in our continuous professional development program, both online and off. Again, clients do not only want a skilled advisor, they want a trusted advisor.

What advice would you give to our current student members who wish to develop a career in surveying?  

I hope you will continue your route to become an international, ethical professional, that can work part time or full time, anywhere in the world, self-employed or in project teams. RICS can help with that. 

What is next for you?

I will take part in 2 Himalayan expeditions in October and November and if I make it back, I hope to do some part time work for RICS in Europe. I am also asked to join the board of an internet start-up that wants to make people healthier at work. 


Thank you Ed for taking the time to give us a bit more insight to your work at RICS, we wish you all the best for the future and thank you for all your hard work you have done!