As anyone in the mortgage banking industry knows, loan origination is a hard job. The emotional roller coaster that originators go through on a daily basis is not for the faint of heart. Today, in our more difficult marketplace, this is especially true. Whether it is coming from the company or the individual, the pressure to perform is tremendous. In my opinion, there are three primary factors that distinguish originators who generate leads successfully from those who fail in this arena:
- The best originators serve as great teachers to their clients. What does that mean? Selling at its core is the ability to influence another person. Many average originators can’t or won’t take on this role and are more product experts than anything else. Product specialists are more likely to be successful during a refinance boom because customers are coming to them. On the other hand, top salespeople form a credible relationship with customers and prospects by aligning their efforts with the customer’s emotions and mindset with the goal of making the best decision for the customer. Weaker originators want the product to sell itself.
- Top originators recognize that the selling environment is changing and are willing to learn new techniques to adapt accordingly. This is no surprise to any sales trainer who has top producers in a class. They are the best students and the most demanding. A teacher must deliver their “A” game to them. If the marketplace is first-time homebuyers, these originators are texting updates because that is what their customers want. Top originators are continually learning and tweaking their sales models. They have coaches, read books, and go to advanced training classes. They are proactive and don’t wait for the company to provide what they need to be successful. They do whatever it takes to get better. Top originators also realize that they don’t know everything and are willing to do the work needed to meet customers’ needs. Low-performing originators tend to make excuses for why they aren’t doing more production and want the selling world to stay the same. They are stuck in the past.
- Top salespeople have a great attitude and lift the people around them including operational staff. Sub-par originators have the opposite attitude and blame everyone else for their failures. They do not recognize or admit that to change poor sales results, they must first take responsibility and own their situation.
There is no question that today’s selling requires originators to cast a wide net and make lead generation an integral part of their daily sales activities. The reality is that originators always need to replace customers or referral sources who do not match their current selling model or sweet spot. Originators who are not continually prospecting are destined to be left behind.