First of all, many studies have been performed on top producers. No matter what field of sales they are in, top producers always seem to have a common thread. This has led me to believe that success is a recipe. What I mean by this is wherever you find success, you will find certain ingredients. Unfortunately, many loan officers focus on the WRONG ingredients. This became very clear to me, only when I began teaching. I say this because some of the brightest and most capable of my students are also the poorest! Before I break into that though, let's look at the key ingredients that MUST be present to be a top producer:
1. - Passion.
Another poster mentioned this above, and hit the nail on the head. However, a lot of us misread what passion is. When I say passion needs to be present I don't mean you need to jump out of your bed every morning pumping your arms in the air singing "I love loans!!" No, this isn't passion, this is, well....Lunacy? j/k :)
Seriously though, passion in this context is a reference to your viewpoint. Those who are passionate and successful have a laser focus to accomplish a certain goal, and view their position as loan officer as a career and not a job. With this laser focus, they are willing to go above and beyond to CREATE a situation of success instead of crying in their spilled milk claiming "it's not fair."
The passionate ones will be successful no matter WHO they work for. They are the ones who still read and research even after hours. Passion will drive you to move forward no matter what.
2- Focus on others.
This quality is required if you want long term success. Sure there are a lot of people who are only focused on screwing over every last client they come in contact with, and they make a lot of money doing it. Eventually, your past deeds will catch up to you. If you want to create a "buzz" and high level of chat about you and your services, there is no finer way to accomplish this than approaching each sales situation with a genuine desire to HELP your client.
By eliminating "commission breath" from the picture, we shine through as genuine, trustworthy individuals who are also referral-worthy. Despite popular belief, no amount of charisma, NLP, or sales hypnosis will mask a thorough screw-job at the closing table! People can see through the fakeness of someone who is only motivated by money.
3- "YOU" packaging
I get emails from posters on this board sometimes asking why I ask so many questions to those who are asking for sales and marketing help. I'm told I should just come right out and tell people what they should do, and be done with it. Well, there's a reason I do this. That reason is listed above. YOU packaging is just a funny name for a simple concept.
Top producers all understand this concept. Top producers understand that YOU are the product! Not your company, not your loan programs, not your rates and not your closing costs. YOU are.
Once we understand this we need to begin treating ourselves like the feature product. In other words, we need to package ourselves, and spend time developing ourselves. Imagine if one of the mortgage companies you broker for called you up and said: Hey, in order to serve our brokers better, we are allowing you to customize some of the plans. Tell us what rates you want to offer, what credit scores will qualify etc. Anything goes, you want it, you'll have it..."
How many of us would jump all over this opportunity like mad men, trying our best to create the ultimate product? Yet, there is a much more powerful solution available to us and it seems to get neglected by 95% of the originators out there. Becoming a student of your career, and spending time and money to invest in the most powerful product we have to offer (ourselves) will move lo's to the top of the heap faster and more decisively than any "super-loan."
4- Referral/ duplication of effort
No matter how many people tell you "Don't work with realtors," or "avoid builders," etc, don't listen to them. All top producers understand that duplication of effort is needed to grow. If technology is all we needed (as some will have you believe) then all companies would be running and thriving with nothing more than sophisticated computer programs.
Nope, you absolutely MUST have others out there that are telling people how wonderful and great you are. Every referral partner you team up with works like a mini- sales employee spreading the word. Nothing can grow your business faster than a raving fan that is excited to be working with you. There are so many groups to choose from: realtors, builders, CFP's, CPA's, Divorce attorneys, etc. Choose one or two groups and stick with them. Learn everything you can about adding value to your new team mates, and expect the same devotion in return. If it's not reciprocated, fire the individual and hire one who can.
All top producers maintain a well worked database of SOI, former clients and future clients. Without a good database follow-up system in place, you will constantly spend time and money recreating new clients. This will eventually burn you out, or eat into your ROI to the point that you wonder why you even bother (yes, I was there at one point... lol. Effective database marketing will eventually rival any form of advertising and marketing you may do, except for the fact that the clients that come from your database are primarily returning clients or associates! Warm leads vs. cold leads... Hmmmm...
6- Niche focus
You have to be exceptional at something. When others say, "Wow I sure could use ________" you want everyone's eyes to light up and say " Go see __________, he's the best at ________." (Don't you love my spaces?)
Having a niche specialty allows you to focus your creative energy. Like it or not, we are only human and absolutely cannot afford the mental energy and time required to be great at everything. It spreads us too thin, and we end up being mediocre. Focus on what you want to be great at, and make sure everyone knows this is your specialty...
Finally, top producers are not talkers, but doers. There are plenty of sharp people out there, many of them with great ideas. Yet many of them are starving because they can never seem to get past the stage of "research." You know the kind, they are always telling you about the latest and greatest marketing plan, or idea that they will be implementing next week or month. There are thousands of these types out there, but only a handful of those that actually decide to move forward and excuse the phrase, "just do it." Ahhh, the true nature of the entrepreneur! Now, what will you "do" today to move your career in the right direction?
Chad Weber Average Joe LO
Average Joe L.O. provides hype free marketing products for loan officers who target real estate agents. If this is your target, you need to visit http://www.averagejoelo.com today to take advantage of additional free training materials.