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   ARTICLE   |   From Scotsman Guide Residential Edition   |   August 2009

Tricks of the Traits for Lending Success

Personality and behavior characteristics often distinguish the best brokers from the rest

When it comes to the business world, professionals with a specific set of personality and behavior traits often find the most success. Mortgage brokers should know what these are and strive to make them their own. In addition, when hiring, brokers can look for and identify these traits to choose the best candidates.

First, let's look at the personality side of the equation. Some internal qualities tantamount to success include:

  • Passion: This is perhaps the most important trait a broker can have. Mortgage brokers must have passion for their business to achieve the highest levels of success. If you don't love what you do, it will show.
  • Charisma: Top producers can build relationships, trust and rapport with their clients quickly. Charisma gives brokers who operate their business based on relationships a significant advantage over those who operate based on transactional details.
  • Control: Top producers desire to maintain control of their style of selling. They understand that their style defines them and that losing control of that weakens their abilities. If they feel they need to change their approach, they do so methodically.
  • Confidence: The best brokers have complete confidence in what they do. Confidence comes with knowledge and develops as they become experts in the profession.
  • Character: Top producers understand the importance of character, which also can be thought of as reputation. As such, they commit to always performing at their highest level. They also know that building a strong reputation can take an entire career but that destroying one can happen in minutes.

Beyond personality traits, behavioral patterns also dictate whether a mortgage broker will reach the highest levels of success. High achievers possess five time-tested behavior patterns, as noted more than four decades ago in the Harvard Business Review and adapted here:

1. They like working on their own. Top producers seek situations in which they can solve problems. They have a great desire to work independently and recognize opportunities to build their careers.

2. They avoid petty or routine work. Once a problem is solved, they move on to the next one. Although taking loan applications may appear mundane, top producers know the value of information and view this task as essential to information-gathering.

3. They prefer to work with experts. When they have an issue, top producers want to speak with someone who has the experience or knowledge they lack as quickly as possible. Top producers know their limits and understand their role. Some liken themselves to attorneys representing their clients before a judge. The stronger their case, the better their chances of getting the deal they want. If they hit a roadblock, they don't hesitate to call on an expert for help. If a deal is a no-go, top producers move on. Pushing too hard isn't worth damaging their reputation.

4. They want concrete measurements of their accomplishments. High achievers dedicate themselves to making a lot of money because they see financial gain as a measurement of their success. Money isn't always the best or most important measurement, but it often results from doing something extremely well.

5. They set moderate goals. Doing so, high achievers can maximize their feelings of accomplishment. Brokers who strive for impractical goals position themselves for failure.

When looking at personality traits and behavioral patterns in themselves or in potential job hires, mortgage brokers striving to reach the highest levels of their profession should consider these elements as they move forward in their careers. By learning from and working with the best of the business world, brokers can add their name to the upper echelons of the real estate finance industry.


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