The third week of Berlin is in the books! It was another extremely fun week full of hard work, travel, and exploring Berlin even more. First I wanted to talk about the work that I have been doing throughout the week at Sirius and how I am overcoming and uncertainty and ambiguity. At work this week I continued to work some on their budgeting for service charge expenses and looked at their forecast in order to make sure the budgets, which many peoples bonuses are based off of, are in line and make sense. I also continued to help with the annual report and 10K filing which was released today (June 3rd). The year end continued to be a stressor for the finance department as the deadline approached, however, as the week progressed it started to come down to just tying up some loose ends. Additionally, I also worked on creating a financial analysis and some basic models of the firms FFO (funds from operations) by digging through Sirius’s past financial filings and also did the same in a company comparable analysis with regards to some important real estate investment ratios. This was one of my favorite tasks that I got to do at work so far given the fact the topic was so open ended and I used my investment research skills in order to construct basic excel models of historical real estate metrics and extend a future forecast that my boss will now use in his presentation to shareholders this week in London. I was even surprised when my boss called me and worked with me using the models I created in order to craft an email of the supporting data to the CFO of the whole entire firm. In addition to FFO analysis I also looked at overhead margins, net operating income growth, dividend payout ratios as a % of FFO, and much more. Finally, I helped to revise and edit the legal aspect of the annual report which contained packets that all executive and non-executive directors would have to sign upon the release of the annual report with regard to compensation and things of that nature. Overall, I have not experienced that much uncertainty in the office as my boss and coworkers are normally very direct and helpful with what exactly I need to do. Nevertheless, I have experienced some times in which I have had something to do and whenever that happens I normally try my best to find tasks that I can do to either help my manager or some of my other coworkers whether it is in the Finance department or somewhere else in accounting.
Outside of work it felt yet again that I was becoming a permanent resident of Berlin. I feel extremely comfortable with navigating the city, communicating with locals, and just about everything else. With that said, however, I do have a lot left that I still need to explore. Early in the week I went out to explore the Kreuzberg area and do some laundry. Wednesday evening my family arrived which was nice and we went out to the house of 100 beers right by the Airbnb. Thursday was a national holiday in Germany so I was able to spend the whole day with my family going to the Berlin Dome, East Side Gallery, Tiergarten, Biergarten in the tiergarten, among other things. Friday, we went to another biergarten, dinner, and then I went out with some friends late. The weekend was extremely exciting as I got to travel to Prague with my mom, dad, and brother Dillon. The train was roughly 4 hours, however, the view along the way was at times absolutely breathtaking. It was also funny on the way there as there was a group of Germans drinking out of a mini keg on the train (Yes Germans love their beer). Prague was absolutely stunning. It honestly felt like I was not even in a real city in the old town center of the city and rather as if I was in Disneyworld. The old town square and surrounding area was beautiful with some picture perfect architecture. We did a three hour walking tour to see some of the cities most iconic sites, went out to a couple places to eat where I had a pork knuckle, visited Lennon Wall, and walked across the Charles bridge. On Sunday we spent the day visiting the breathtaking Prague Castle which overlooked the city and going inside the cathedral within the castle limits. Finally, we finished the trip off by doing an hour long river boat cruise along the city limits. Overall, the trip was absolutely amazing and it was so amazing to see such gorgeous fairytale like city like Prague. We finished the trip to Prague with a trip to a Lebanese restaurants shown above which was amazing (no, the fries are not Lebanese) Prague was beautiful and so much different from Berlin, however, I can say that I am happy that I am living in Berlin as I feel like it is a better city to spend 2 months in. The week finished with Burgermesiter upon my return to Berlin and I can say I could not think of a better way to top it all off.