An excerpt from Volume 2 of Be the Better Broker.
Commit. Perform. Measure.
We are what we repeatedly do. — ARISTOTLE
As a mortgage Broker, your whole world is numbers.
In Volume One we spoke of ‘the four-point system’ for winning and retaining clients, as set out in the book How to Become a Rainmaker by Jeffrey J. Fox. You achieve your goal by earning four points a day each weekday. You get one point for making a call, with the aim to arrange a meeting. You get two points for actually scheduling a meeting. You get three points for nailing that meeting, and you get four points for completing a file. The goal is four points per day. A pretty low-pressure system, and frankly a bit too weak for some.
If you get to the point where you’re closing one file per day, you’re hitting your four-point target. But I can tell you from experience that at a file per day, the time left for cold calls and lunch meetings is nil.
Will the four point system get you there? It might get some there, others might feel it lacks truly powerful action. Read on and see another approach you might prefer.
Feet on the street
Here’s another system that a Broker mapped out for seven of us in one of those one-off mastermind meetings I mentioned previously. We were all somewhat spellbound by the power, simplicity, guts, and results.
The Broker, let’s call him John Doe (JD), suggested that no new Broker should be meeting or making cold calls after their 100th day in the business. Within 100 days they should have a full database and they should be working that database and no longer cold calling.
From a strong Broker.
I am not a believer in cold calling either. I don’t want to be cold called; does anyone? And I can’t do something well if I don’t believe in it. The path I chose was more akin to ‘warm-calling’. JD’s path was far more gutsy.
Write down the answer to this question: On a scale of Zero to One how badly do you want to be a success in this business? It’s a digital world, so you’re either a zero or a one. Choose. I know you wrote down a 1, otherwise you would have quit reading this book a long time ago.
You may already have a reasonable number of warm contacts. These are people you can call and grab lunch with to talk about your businesses, and it is likely you will draw referrals from that group.
However some of us are new to town, or our social circles are too small, or we are trying to break into a new demographic. And to do that efficiently, pick up the pen again and write down these four numbers:
In the previously mentioned meeting we all wrote the numbers down. There is value in putting pen to paper. We knew it would add to the story. Please do the same.
JD went on to say that when he started in the mortgage business he knew nothing about how to process a mortgage transaction. This, of course, is a shocking statement considering his recent completion of the licensing course. Nonetheless, this was the case.
What JD did know was that there was a fellow in his office who was a master at underwriting a file, but that guy came up light on the skills needed for prospecting for new clients.
Coming from a position as a trainer in the insurance industry, another commission-only and very tough business, JD had a very particular set of skills acquired over a very long career…
Here was an opportunity for both of them if JD could deliver the applicants.
Every single day JD would walk out into the parking lot of a building supply store or lumber yard. He would look for white panel vans and walk up to the drivers with a script he had nailed down pat. It was along these lines:
“Good afternoon, sir. Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is JD and I’m a Mortgage Broker specializing in financing for the self-employed tradesman. My father was a contractor and as a kid I remember him always having the toughest time with banks. They made his life hell and I decided when I got into this business that I wanted to help people out, people like my father. If you ever have any financing needs or questions about owning your own home, I’d love to be the person to help you out.”
What we have here is a guy doing the exact opposite of what Mom told us. He’s talking to strangers in panel vans.
JD delivered this pitch 20 times per day. Usually between 8am and 11am each morning.
What did you do today between 8am and 11am to drum up new business? Are you kicking this much ass?
Out of those twenty interactions an average of five would commit to a meeting at JD’s office.
He set the tone early. He didn’t make house calls. He wasn’t an aluminum siding salesman and neither are you. Meetings were held in his professional place of business. Clients would come to his office. As far as each of those clients knew, JD just happened to be in the parking lot that day. They had no way to know this was his daily drill,.
Of the five scheduled meetings, due either to no-shows, changes of heart, or exceedingly challenging application details, JD would typically wind up with three complete applications.
One would become a completed file. Either a refinance or a purchase.
JD did this every weekday for three months — 20 strangers in parking lots, five meetings, three applications and one file.
This is a high-level commitment to success. How about your level of commitment? Is it this high? Why not? How can you elevate your game? How can you leverage your own life experience to make it a real part of the Broker you are.
In his first month, he made $600.00. In his second month, he made zero dollars. In this third month, he made $6,000. In his fourth month, he made $20,000. In his fifth month, he hired his first full-time assistant. Inside three years, he had seven employees processing volume of $100 million.
From zero files to one hundred million in under three years.
This is a hell of a story, isn’t it? It tells you that you can have whatever level of success you want in this world. But you have to start somewhere, and that somewhere might be a hardware store parking lot without a single file’s worth of experience. It all hinges not upon how badly you want it, but on how aggressively you will prepare for and pursue it.
So, on a scale of zero to one, how badly do you want it?
Commit to implementing action. Prepare your scripts, prepare your plan.
Perform. Actually implement it. Prepare a timeline, schedule or calendar and stick with it. Religiously and relentlessly.
Measure the results of the actions you take. You may need to correct course from time to time. No marketing plan is set in stone.
I ask you again, what did you do today between 8am and 11am to drum up new business?
Are you kicking this much ass today?
Will you kick this much ass tomorrow?
Yes. You will.
Chapter Tip: Break out of your shell and make it happen! This business is not rocket science, but success within it requires bold action!