How to deal with a bad day as a broker

Posted by Nov22, 2016 Comments Comments Off on How to deal with a bad day as a broker
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I recently read this blog by Seth Godin and it was a good description of what it feels like to build a broking business. It can be a hard slog at times and some days you just need to hang in there. For example, yesterday a lender clawed back commission on a $2.5 million loan we settled 355 days ago. Ouch! That hurts. The deal took a bit of time win. The client asked heaps of questions. It wasn’t a straight forward deal. And now I’ve lost money. Looking back, the client wasn’t right for us but I’m not sure that there was anything we could have done to avoid this satiation (they were referred by a good client). That’s just the way business rolls sometimes. Life isn’t always fair.

What’s important is that we, as brokers that are trying to build a business that we are proud of, just focus on those daily activities that are necessary and, over time, that generate a tremendous amount of long-term value. We will have some bad days. Some clients will take advantage of us. Sometimes we’ll do a lot of work for very little reward. That’s just how it is. But we must stay focused on what we are trying to achieve – that is, doing work that we are proud of. Don’t let the “wrong” people or the random “unfairness” of life demotivate or deter you from doing the good work that the vast majority of your clients value.

In my business, these activities include:

  • Proactively telephoning existing clients to ensure they are happy and to explore if there’s anything we can do to help them achieve their financial goals. Not to try and sell them something but to really help them
  • Random acts of kindness e.g. sending a hand-written thank you card to a client thanking them for their business and ongoing loyalty
  • Helping a client resolve a banking issue, complete a switch or negotiate a better interest rate discount
  • Writing a blog that shares ideas with clients about how to build wealth, save money, feel more financial secure and so on.

All these activities do not generate any immediate revenue. However, all of them do, over time, help to build a very successful broking business.

Our long-term success depends on our discipline to do these simple activities on a daily basis. As author Jim Collins says, “the signature of mediocrity is chronic inconsistency.” Completing the above activities occasionally (not consistently) creates virtually zero value.

From a practical perspective, I understand that it’s really hard to do these things because it’s so easy to get distracted by more urgent activities and issues. We all rush to the urgent at the expense of the important. The solution is about creating habits. What you need to do is try really hard to do something every day for 4 weeks and its likely you’ll get close to creating a new habit. Once you have created a habit, it should be a lot easier.

When business is slow, do your daily activities. When you are flat-out, do your daily activities. When a mean client refinances within the first 12 months, do your daily activities. And when everything going perfectly, do your daily activities.

Keep up the hard work. Out industry needs people like you.


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