Name: Ryan Hansen
Company: Link Logistics Real Estate
Position:  Associate
Age:  27
Education: University of Wisconsin – Madison
Years in Real Estate:  5




What led you to work in the Real Estate industry? Describe your current responsibilities:

Growing up around a multi-faceted family business that is involved with agriculture, real estate, and energy, I have always been intrigued by the different ways in which businesses grow and operate. During my studies at UW Madison, I realized the impact that real estate had on a business’s strategy and operation. Through my internships, my interest in the transactional side of commercial real estate solidified as I learned how the complexity and unique nuances of deals allow for not only analytical, but also creative solutions.

After working at Duff and Phelps for 2 years in their advisory group, I took an opportunity to join Gateway (Link’s predecessor) in mid-2018 as an Asset Management Analyst, supporting markets across the US. In this role, I have grown into an Associate on the Central Region Leasing and Asset Management team, My team and I are responsible for managing leasing and strategic operations for the almost 40 million square feet across the Chicago, Southeast Wisconsin, and Kansas City markets. Our diverse portfolio has allowed me the opportunity to work with businesses of all types from small individually owned businesses to global corporations. One of my favorite parts of the role is walking space with a tenant to learn about their business and understanding the role that we play in their operation’s success.

Who has been the biggest influence in your career?

Being a part of the constantly expanding Link team over the past two and a half years has been an invaluable experience. I feel privileged to have been able to work with not only Link professionals but also a variety of tenants and brokers across many U.S. industrial markets.

Two of the biggest influences in my career have been Rob Damrat and Jack Hennessey – both a part of the Chicago Link office. When I started at Link, I had very limited industrial experience, so being able to lean on two seasoned professionals has been critical to my growth and success. Rob and Jack have challenged me to not only excel in my current position, but to also set meaningful career goals and to expand my professional network through groups such as NAIOP. I would be remiss not to mention the influence of my dad, who fostered my interest and curiosity in business and entrepreneurship from a young age.

Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?

For the foreseeable future, I see myself continuing to build my career in industrial real estate by taking on new challenges and seeking deeper industry knowledge. I always strive to absorb as much as I can from as many people as possible. My goal is to continue to grow within Link’s organization and I hope to one day hold a leadership position.

How long have you been involved with NAIOP and what do you view as the benefits of your NAIOP Developing Leader membership?

I have been a member of NAIOP for over two years. The Developing Leaders programming has been a great way to meet peers, as well as providing me with the opportunity to listen and learn from leaders of the industry. I especially enjoyed the structured mentorship program; I was paired with a great mentor who provided an additional perspective to turn to for advice and any questions I might have.

What are the three most important qualities you think a real estate young professional should possess?

Curiosity, persistence, and effective communication are key qualities for success in our industry.

What is the best piece of professional advice you have been given?     

“Don’t let perfect get in the way of really good.” My job is very fast paced and dynamic so the ability to quickly prioritize, pick out what is most important, and move ahead is vital to be effective.

What networking advice can you offer young professionals to help advance their careers?

Make a concerted effort to attend as many events as possible. It’s hard not to feel out of place when you’re first starting out, but every event will make you a little more comfortable and leave you with a few more familiar faces. Taking advantage of the DL events with smaller groups and many young professionals who find themselves in a similar situation is a great way to get started.   

Outside of work, how do you enjoy spending your time?

I like spending as much time as I can outdoors, specifically in the great state of Wisconsin. I enjoy hiking, fishing, hunting, boating, skiing, and anything else that gets me outside!

What’s your favorite building in Chicago?

Garfield Park Conservatory is one of the most fascinating green spaces in the city, and a major bonus is that it’s warm 365 days a year. The Fern Room is a personal favorite since it makes you imagine what Chicagoland would have looked like once upon a time when it was roamed by dinosaurs.