Ask for help to cope with twists of fate

After a decade of sustained growth, many in the mortgage industry are struggling to adapt to tougher market conditions.

This led me to think about jobs that by their nature are structured around extreme and sudden changes in fortune.

Take the life of a football manager – sometimes their team is up, other days it’s down. And how they deal with the fickle winds of fortune is vital.

Derby County manager Paul Jewell looks like a man puzzled about how he got there in the first place. Bolton Wanderers’ Gary Megson is asking for outside help to keep his team in the Premiership. And Stoke City’s Tony Pulis is seeking experienced advisers to help him plan for a season in the Premiership.

These are three approaches to dealing with a crisis and I think they apply to players in the mortgage industry too. Companies are seeking solutions to situations they are in, could be in or as is the case with Stoke City, hopefully will be in.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the approaches we take to deal with change. This week I hope to sow a few seeds that will encourage brokers to assess the help they can get from networks, lenders, software providers, management teams, colleagues and even clients.

If I have learnt anything from my years in the business it’s that we welcome anything that makes our jobs easier. With this in mind, I’m impressed by a software programme recently developed inhouse by a brokerage.

The system focusses on the overall sales business model and does not follow the established practice of prioritising compliance.

Don’t get me wrong, compliance is a feature of everything it does, but it’s way ahead of the competition because bottom line growth is its priority.

Many of its brokers are generating more than £25,000 in commission every month, even in these troubled times.

Just as Jewell, Megson and Pulis will have to seek help on issues such as players’ diets, training methods and international scouting, so brokers must ask for help in assessing where reviews and modifications are needed in their income streams, software support and client retention practices.

I will leave readers with two questions – are you confident your office software is doing all it can to help you gain an advantage and have you asked for help in sourcing the best one for your business model?

If the answer to both questions is yes you must be confident about future growth. If not, don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are plenty of systems to help you, just make sure you pick the best one for your company.