Working through adversity is key to success

by Scot Kersgaard29 Mar 2016
It always comes down to people. It’s probably true in every business, but in the mortgage business, brokerage owners almost always talk about people: originators, processors, clients.

Anthony Lombardo, president and owner of Hi-Tech Mortgage, with offices in California and Arizona, spoke animatedly about what it takes to be a good originator then laughed and said he has a tendency to hire the wrong people.

“I look for someone who is competitive. Some people see that as a negative trait, but I don’t see it that way,” he said. “They certainly need to be self-sufficient.

“What is funny is that I have hired so many people, and I am wrong about them so often. They look great on paper, they have an MBA, they do a great interview, they seem to have great self-confidence, and I’m convinced they will be a rock star,” he laughed. “Then they come in and… nothing. Every time I think I see a good one, I’m wrong.

“Well, don’t say that. I’ve got great people, but so many times I’ve hired the wrong people. Then I hire someone that I think well, maybe they’ll be OK, we’ll see, and then they take off and I’m like’ wow,’” said Lombardo, who is president of the California Association of Mortgage Professionals.

What it comes down to, he said, is that you really can’t tell how someone will perform until you see how they handle adversity. “Some people who look really great and have a lot of confidence, but as soon as they experience rejection, they crumble.

“If I have learned anything in this business it is that you can’t let rejection stop you. You have to work through it. Some people will stop working, or they just go through the motions, but the energy isn’t there anymore. Customers aren’t stupid, they can sense things about you, and they are right. You can’t sell from a place of desperation. “It is very difficult to do that.”

He said that in 2008 through 2010 many people were desperate.  “We were all selling form desperation, we all were, but the ones who survived were able to channel confidence somehow.”

Thursday: Anthony Lombardo discusses the value of making connections and developing relationships when getting started.

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