4 Things That Will Get You Back In The Black, Or Keep You There…

Sell your business and get out now, if mediocrity speaks to you.

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Happy day after Thanksgiving!

We hope you all had a great time with your family and friends. We here at EPM took the day to eat, drink, be merry and thankful for how far we’ve come. As the year ends, I thought today was good as any to talk about getting back in the black (or staying there).

It’s Black Friday. Today is the day retailers look forward to most of the year, they get to spend the next 30-45 days, or more, raking in the dough. Budgets are met and made up for, while the New Year gets a great kick into gear.

There are four key things that need to happen in your business at this time. We touched on it briefly in my last post, but today I’ll expand.

You need an action plan of embracement not just x’s and o’s.

 

  1. Sales, sales, sales. Your entire company is an extension of your sales team, period. If you don’t get this then you have a different problem. If you get this, then you know that your team needs to be trained in the art of customer service. Everyone should know they are the “face” of the company. Each opportunity to interact with a customer is a chance to extend the brand and sale your services. We thrive on sales and act accordingly.

 

  1. Support. The best sales teams are the ones that have the education and training to stay the best. From Underwriting to Marketing, we train. In the mortgage business MLO’s are required to be licensed, we don’t stop there and neither should you. Here at EPM we make sure that everyone can be the best regardless of title. There are seminars, collaboratives, and the freedom to explore options that may not fall under the traditional education model. There are some companies, that rarely need to look outside to fill key positions, because those in house are up to the challenge. They grow because they can continue to bring in smart, trainable people who are up to the task.

 

  1. Growth. If you’re not growing, why are you in business? Your goal may not be to become the next Bill Gates, it doesn’t have to be, but to settle for middle ground? No way. Sell your business and get out now, if mediocrity speaks to you. After supporting, training, and taking care of the “Big Four” (Clients, Consumers, Vendors and Employees) recruiting is the logical next step. A growth environment where people can help themselves allows your company to shine. Don’t just meet growth projections, beat them, give your customers and the competition something to think about.

 

  1. Explain The Why. The WHY is everything. Many people in upper management don’t get this, and their turnover rates tell the story. If no one gets why we have a financing minimum, customers who don’t meet the criteria, tell customers who do, that we didn’t help them. If processors don’t understand why we do such a deep dive into credit etc., then borrowers are denied. I could go on, but explaining the why has greater consequences than angry customers. If your team doesn’t get The Why, your company is being underserved and your employee’s skills under-utilized. The Why, makes people think beyond what is in front of them. The Why encourages greatness. You’re not too good to explain it and if it’s too complicated, adjust it and make sure everyone can understand. The Why is what matters most.

 

 

As we move into 2018, there are some uncertainties, but what should never be uncertain is how to get your company in pace to the top and in the black.

 

Eddy Perez Jr., CMB

President, Equity Prime Mortgage

What The Holiday’s Can Mean For Your Business

In our business, these changes give us a larger window to use the holidays as an opportunity…

 

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It’s November, which normally takes me walking into a prematurely constructed Christmas display in the mall for that to sink in, but this is also my cue to think about the holiday season in a real way. Decorations mean it’s time to send Holiday cards and set up the office party; it can mean so much more…

What happens in your business around this time of year may vary; for us we continue projecting and planning for the coming year. Sure, we start ordering cards to show gratitude and appreciation to our borrowers, vendors and lending partners, but we also start a deep dive in to market trends.

This year we saw a shift in the housing market and how buyers are thinking. Purchase season is no longer in the summer months, because builders are still building well into the winter months. Inventory is at a premium and when a home goes on the market, it doesn’t stay long. This time of year, people aren’t traveling, with the shift, they are leaving further out into first and second quarter.

In our business, these changes give us a larger window to use the holidays as an opportunity…

We catch up on old business relationships and look to the holidays as a time to forgive and be forgiven. There is a lot that has happened in the year and plenty has been said, so use this time to address past transgressions; take advantage of the good moods and free liquor.

We also look to say, “Thank You” to the people who have helped us get where we are and goodbye to some, so that they may use this time to look for opportunities in the new year.

Whatever your business, the holidays can be a great time to restructure and rejoice, use them wisely.

 

Eddy Perez, CMB

President, Equity Prime Mortgage

 

 

 

 

What To Do When All Hell Breaks Loose…

The storm is a test of the soul of your company.

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Last week we talked about the calm before the storm, because the storm is normally coming. This week let’s look at what happens when all hell breaks loose. “This is when I’m the calmest.”

The first rule: DON’T PANIC!

Extreme focus is required. There is little to no room for error and this is the part where you should be visualizing and preparing for the next steps. If this all sounds matter of fact, it is.

When the borrowers are calling concerned about the contractor who didn’t know to fill out the contingency repair form and blew the terms of the loan, or the underwriter didn’t check if the borrower owned the property, or the market bottoms out (again); this is when you see who’s who.

The storm is a test of the soul of your company.

You learn who’s with you and who’s ready to jump ship at the first sign of trouble. Who gets the vision and who can navigate this time with you to help you find the next calm. Are you being asked for recommendation letters, are the meetings overly contentious?  When you take the temperature of the “Top Four”; consumers, employees, referrals and vendors, is everyone running hot?

For us, the remedy, is being humble and working as a unit. This is the time we ban together and look out for each other. We make the call that may not be ours to make. We go to the customer and knock on the door. We meet with solutions in mind.

We started in the storm, at a time when  Jamie Dimon was blaming brokers, lenders (the risky ones)  and LO’s,  my business partner and I went all in. We took the pulse of our team, they were all in and we’re all still here ten years later.

When it all goes left, remember the first rule and you’ll make it through with everything and everyone you need to weather the next go round.

 

Eddy Perez, CMB

President Equity Prime Mortgage

Human Capital Is Good

If you rate human interaction a -5, in the interview, you’re probably not going to be a good fit for us.

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While this could definitely be the title to Tom Cruise’s next Sci-fi movie; human capital is really not a bad thing. Capital is a type of asset that allows a business to make more money and further its goals. When you add the human element you get people who are invested in your business and ultimately their own success.

From your HR Director to your CFO the goals have to be the same, even if the path is different. We’ve talked about this in some past posts. Like minded people are overrated. The idea is to find the right fit and have people working towards the common goal and good of the company.

Our HR Director looks for people who will work well with-in our culture, a culture that we have worked hard to cultivate. It may sound simple, but bagel Friday’s is a thing we do here at EPM. The bagel announcement goes out and that brings everyone into the break room; underwriters, closers and LO’s are coming together to talk with each other. This is the time we find out about each others weekend plans, what movies  we are going to watch, what DIY projects are we prepping. The simple act of communication is probably one of the most important elements of Human Capital. If you rate human interaction a -5, in the interview, you’re probably not going to be a good fit for us.

Businesses run off people, people run off support and creativity. Human Capital is about business.  As you’re setting yourself up for success remember the basics and you can’t go wrong. Human Capital is a good thing.

 

Eddy Perez, CMB

President, Equity Prime Mortgage