The Value of Making Mistakes

Gulp.

You close the email and sink back in your chair. Your underwriter pointed out that you calculated the income incorrectly for your self-employed borrower, leaving the DTI at an interesting 57%. Of course, the loan referral is from a new RE Agent that you’ve been trying to make progress with… and she is NOT going to be happy. The borrower is a CIO for a new manufacturing company in your area, and now the loan you told him was a “slam dunk” is now actually DEAD. Gulp indeed.

These are the moments where Loan Officer’s reputations are made, for better or for worse. Every Top Producing Loan Officer has multiple stories just like this that they can recall with great clarity; they can tell you the borrower name, Agent name, the Loan Amount, the problem, and likely what shoes they were wearing that day. These types of errors are burnt into our memories.

10 Productivity Tips for Managing Your Email and Your Day

A tidy Email Inbox may feel great, but it doesn’t earn you a commission check.  Know this: addressing the common obsession with a clean Inbox is one of the best ways to put more time, productivity and profit into your business.  Here’s why:

Email is simultaneously one of the most helpful and potentially debilitating business tools ever created. The ability to have a wide variety of vital conversations through one platform — and the ability to engage those conversations anytime, anywhere — is indispensable. However, people’s devotion to their Email Inbox is where problems often arise.

In the modern-day business world — filled with obvious Internet-based distractions such as YouTube, 24/7 news and sports coverage, online shopping and more — the Email Inbox is the underrated King of Distractions. It’s a silent assassin of workday balance and productivity.

Working to manage and organize your Inbox is important, but it should rarely be prioritized as your most essential task of the day. With that in mind, here are 10 tips for managing email that can help unchain you from your Inbox:

Why Habit Formation Builds Changes that Last

Recently I wrote about the benefits of building and constantly replenishing our willpower. While boosting willpower helps improve performance, it (ideally) takes a back-seat to something even more significant: habit creation.

For a Realtor or Loan Originator, the habit formation process is one that drives lasting change, but is often misunderstood and underappreciated. Yet to close more transactions than you are today, you need to build and execute on better habits than those you currently have in place. It really is that simple.

Forming Habits Takes Commitment and Patience

Decades of research has helped us gain a much better understanding of how habits are born.  We can now define habits by saying, “They are actions triggered automatically in response to contextual cues that have been associated with their performance.” Wait, what does that mean?  Let’s keep going.

Initially, with habits, conscious repetition is vital, and this requires the use of willpower However, habits don’t begin with JUST repetition and an act of the will. Habit formation requires repetition combined with “contextual cues.” In other words, if you want to build the habit to go for a run early each morning, a contextual cue (i.e. visual reminder) might be to put your running shoes next to your bed. When you wake the next day and see the shoes, they provide a cue that helps begin the routine. As the routine is built, it becomes a habit, i.e. an automatic, nearly unthinking action.