My guess is that you were probably trained to always return your phone calls immediately and that you should be available 24/7 in order to succeed as an originator.
Am I right?
I know that’s how I was trained many years ago. In fact, it was so long ago that I had a pager and always carried around a roll of quarters so I could use a pay phone.
You were probably also told you be seen as an expert, right? Maybe more than any other trainer, originators have preached this idea of being seen as the obvious expert by picking a niche and becoming an expert so you can let everyone know about it.
But here is the problem: Experts never return their phone calls in the evenings or weekends. They never return them immediately, either. Think about your accountant, attorney, doctor, dentist or any other professional whose services you use. Usually they have a secretary or assistant that handles these tasks for them. I realize you and I probably don’t have that luxury, but please pay attention because your actions send messages.
Let’s discuss what not to do and why you shouldn’t do it.
Don’t be accessible 24/7/365
First, this will lead you to be burnt out and grumpy. You need to have set hours people can reach you. If you feel that you must be available like a 7-11 than you have a lead generation and conversion problem you must fix.
Don’t return calls immediately
When you pick up the phone the second it rings, you are subconsciously telegraphing that you are desperate. Busy people never pick up the phone the minute it rings.
Please don’t think that means giving bad service because it doesn’t. You should return all calls within a reasonable time frame (generally within an hour) but it’s a good idea to keep people waiting and have the appearance of being busy.
The other issue with answering all calls is that you rush people off the phone and they notice that. Most people don’t appreciate it and will often go elsewhere. Sometimes, this rush may also cause you to forget important facts or miss certain issues critical to the loan approval.
So if you are trying to be seen as the mortgage expert in your local city, which I highly encourage, then you must first start acting like an expert would. If your business is not quite where you need it to be then I know this will be difficult, but it’s more important to do when you are slow since your positioning with your clients, prospects and referral sources is critical to your success.
Next time that phone rings – let it go to voicemail.
Oh and speaking of voice mail it would be a great idea to let people know what hours and days you are available so you can immediately set up the expectations and boundaries and of course your position as the obvious expert.
Brian Sacks is a national mortgage expert with HomeBridge Financial Services Inc. in Owings Mills, Maryland. He has over 30 years of mortgage experience and career closings of 8,000 loans in excess of $1 billion. A recognized leader in the mortgage industry, Sacks is the resident expert for NBC Channel 11, and he has also appeared on the CBS and ABC stations. Brian has appeared in over 42 states and is considered the national expert on working with credit challenged buyers. Brian is also a respected coach and speaker, and the founder of the Top Originator Mastermind. Watch his four-part free video series on How to Close More Loans—Make More Money and Still Enjoy Life.
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