Many of my fellow loan officers are actually not loan officers anymore. Initially we were advised that as people left the business, there would be more opportunities for those of us that stuck with it. The percentages were in our favor that deals would simply find their way to us. Therein lies the funny thing about advice.
I guess if you are old school, you were questioned for sitting around waiting for the phone to ring. If you recently found the Internet, it is not enough to simply hit the refresh button of your inbox to generate business. The reality of the situation is that hard work and opportunity still go hand in hand. Many of us that had success in the boom years, are still holding things together in this not so boom market.
The secret is not that hard. Keep it Simple. Be involved. Pick Up The Phone. Set appointments. Do the hardest thing on your list first each day. The rest of your day will go much smoother.
Instead of a complicated year long business plan, start using a day plan. If your hours of business are 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, be sure that you are "ready to work at 8:00. Try to have cleared your inbox from home before going to work. If you clear your inbox before bedtime, there should be very little to do in the morning. Make a folder for emails that can be answered at night or on the weekend. If you buy coffee on the way in, leave earlier.
It is all well and good to have neat and organized desk, a great website, and some SEO skills. They are an important part of a modern business plan. There is a time for clerical work, blogging, and education. I would suggest that this time not be during dedicated lead generation and sales call time.
Be ready for sales opportunities. There are many leads groups, real estate boards, builders associations, and chambers of commerce that have 8am meetings. Attend those and then go to the office. Set appointments for the 9:00-11:00. I do not feel it is critical to be in the office if I am on appointments. I can catch up on paperwork later.
The time from 1:00 - 3:00 can be used as dedicated call time. Call 20 people a day. Its easier than you think. You probably speak to 5 current customers as well as 5 business partners per day already. Call a few past customers to see if they have any current needs or referrals. Birthdays are easy ice breakers, as are anniversaries of closing dates. (I trust you keep track of these things) Don't worry if you get a voice mail. Just leave a brief message and move on to your next call. Calls usually last a minute or 2, voice mails are even shorter. You will end up with extra time in this 2 hour time block for clerical work.
This is not to suggest that it is easy to obtain business in a tough market. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. I can only say that I have a far lower chance of success by sitting at the computer hitting the refresh button.
If you have a buyer looking for a lender, Call Ron @ MetLife Home Loans 386-562-2651