Well I’m back from my first Sales mastery trip in many, many years. I hadn’t gone for lots of excuses, mostly because of reacting and being a victim to an ever-changing industry. It was time to gain control over the business again. It is there for the taking. I loved the energy and the people; a very giving and caring environment of like-minded professionals, all on the same path. It’s a well-run event and a tough time commitment for the East coast peeps—a day less and an East Coast locale every other year wouldn’t be a bad adjustment, maybe?
It was very comforting to hear the repeated stories of veterans, who stopped doing the right things or were hit by external adversities (some extreme) and then got back to basics and are now doing well. It was also validating to hear stories about new people getting into this business and succeeding by either taking the play book of the experienced guy in their market and just out implementing them, or by using new approaches (like social media) that old guys have available to them and they just choose not to use. We have a rookie program and have had some great success stories, but the success rate is less than 50% and patience is required.
But if you need any slap in the face as a struggling experienced mortgage banker, just look for new guys in your market doing more than you. It’s very humbling when they win over realtors using tools that were available to you, and frankly just working harder and smarter.
The keys for me are the same and were made brutally clear:
--Have a clear set of SMART goals
--Establish well thought out systems, embracing technology for efficiency where you can.
--Be sure of self-awareness. Utilize tools like DISC or the new Fascination index (Sally Hogshead) to create model matching with your team and business partners.
--Create and establish non –negotiable disciplines—e.g.: ask for the business, expert in the business, taking a good app
--Do more with less, prune the bad and double-down on the good
After 28 years it’s great to see that basically nothing is new. It’s actually easier or the same, to succeed at this business because of the technology available and the efficiencies allowed. Sure those gains may be eaten up by the paperwork requirements, but most of that lies on ops; your comp hasn’t really gone down by loan but the processing costs are up 3-4x.
As a Leader, All I do is to create the platform. I show the possible niches, obtain the products that fit those niches, create the marketing to attack those niches, build the technology systems to attack those market niches with the marketing, and have the operational team to be at the ready to catch and pull those new customers through the process.
The frustration is that a sales professional still has to connect all those dots and pick the niche and marketing and utilize the system to make the wheel move forward. Most of the 1400 people in the desert were sitting around that buffet of options and either blamed someone for not making it happen for them, or the light bulb went off and they created an action and a time to start.
So it’s time to reset your goals and implement. Pick one thing and adapt and implement. Period. Stay disciplined. Find what works for you and do it but it has to be hard to do or it’s not worth it.
Thanks to Todd Duncan for creating this retreat for our industry to clear our heads and realigning our True North.
Just do it.