Ensuring competence at all levels allows a brokerage to maximize its output
For Anish Pabari, senior partner at DLC’s Elite Lending Corporation, it is incumbent upon a mortgage brokerage’s leadership to ensure that the operation makes the most out of its members’ talents.
“The most important lesson I have learned is figuring out your team members’ zones of genius and using this to maximize output by allowing staff to do the activities that the company needs done – the activities that provide them the most joy and gratification, and that they are the best at,” Pabari told Canadian Mortgage Professional.
“This also helped us figure out where we lacked as a team and this allowed us to make better hiring decisions.”
For those who are just starting out, Pabari advises them to seek out the organizations and networks that offer precisely this kind of support.
“Find a mortgage mentor,” Pabari said. “Educate yourself constantly on policies, lenders, rates, and market news … You will figure the rest out as you go along.”
Pabari religiously applies this ethos to Elite Lending, which had its fair share of hurdles to overcome over the past two years.
“At Elite Lending, the most challenging time was at the beginning of the pandemic when things were at a standstill,” Pabari recounted. “There were new government rules coming out all the time, [and] a lot of people were scared. The way that we handled it was by coming together and getting pro-active about an online strategy so our brokers could continue to learn and work with minimal disruption. Our weekly meetings and classroom training went into an online format as well.”
Pabari specifically applies this approach to his industry specialities: B-lending and private lending.
“I make sure my team and I have relationships with all managers and underwriters in the B-space,” Pabari said.
This ensures that his team members “learn to understand businesses and financial statements well,” and “build all pertinent relationships with mortgage investment corporations and individual private lenders at all levels, from families with $500,000 home equity lines of credit to rich investors lending $10 million or more annually.”
Ensuring competence across as many members of an organization as possible gives the brokerage plenty of room for work-life balance.
“I want to travel four to six months a year, working remotely and having my team in Canada handle many aspects of the business,” Pabari said.
The approach bears rich fruit, with Elite Lending doubling in size to reach 120 brokers in January 2022.
“The numerous awards we have been nominated for and won helped us feel confident we were on the right path,” Pabari said.
The executive is especially proud of “going from an all-boys club to almost 50/50 in our female-to-male broker share, as well as the diversity in the group and the different backgrounds of people we have,” and “getting to a point at Elite Lending where the growth is organic and broker- as well as management - driven.”