Loan Officer Skills: Why Your Response Is Your Most Powerful Tool

Loan Officer Tools
Loan Officer Skills

On our recent podcast with Todd Duncan, he and Mike Gulitz talked a lot about loan officer skills. Specifically, they discussed the question: “How should today’s loan officers be responding to the mortgage market and the Coronavirus?” 

Loan Officer Skills

Part of your power as a trusted advisor to your clients is that if you respond well, your borrowers will also win. Developing your loan officer skills to include the ability to be flexible and responsive in the face of changes will bring you success throughout your career. 

Here’s what Todd says about the power in your response: 

  1. Recognize the opportunity 
  2. Be realistic about the hardships
  3. Decide how you will approach fear
  4. Support your community 
  5. Invest in learning

Recognize The Opportunity

There’s no doubt that the news right now is a turbulent place: shifts in the economy and a world health crisis, not to mention an upcoming presidential election. There’s a lot going on! It can be easy to become discouraged by bad news, but Todd offers a silver lining. He says, “It’s in the toughest times, the darkest moments, the periods of uncertainty that the human spirit really has an opportunity to rise.” 

How you choose to respond is just that: a choice. There are so many factors outside of your control, so your response is the one thing that you can be certain about. Todd points out, “As hard as that is to get your head around, we have a choice. Every person that’s listening to this, every person that wakes up, every day, has a choice that day to adopt the attitude that they’re going to have.” 

Be Realistic About the Hardships

Now, that’s not to say to bury your head in the sand. It’s important to be fully aware of the difficult circumstances that you, your partners, your customers, and your team are facing. 

Instead of either ignoring the stressful situations, or becoming bogged down by bad news, focus on how you can make a difference. 

Decide How You Will Approach Fear

Todd breaks down three different ways to approach the concept of fear. 

First, we can think of it as False Ideas Appearing Real (FEAR). Becoming paralyzed by worry of what the future may hold is extremely easy, especially right now. However, an overwhelming amount of the things that we worry about, never actually come to pass. 

Next, we have the option to think of fear as Face Everything And Rise (FEAR). Todd points out that when there is fear, there is also the opportunity to find success. He says that throughout the decades, “every challenge in business has created a breakthrough for the people that think positively about it.” 

And finally, that moves into Feeling Excited And Ready (FEAR). We know that we can’t control the world around us, but we can make a difference in it. So how do we use our loan officer skills to change our response? 

Support Your Community

Now that you’ve decided how you will respond to this time, turn outward. Focusing on supporting your community goes far beyond your neighborhood. 

Think about your circle of influence: friends, family, your team, customers, and professional partners. How are they feeling the pressure? What can you do to help support them? 

Whether that’s sending groceries to a client who cannot leave the house or spending time on the phone with a family member who is isolated from others, you’ll be making a difference. Connect with your professional partners to see how you can support their business and their goals. Do something good, and you’ll be equipping your community to rise above these challenges. 

Invest In Learning New Loan Officer Skills

During this time, it’s more important than ever to continue to learn new loan officer skills. You could join a mortgage coaching program, spend time reading and watching resources from top producers, or join a community of originators on Facebook or LinkedIn

Whatever you do, don’t stop learning and growing. You might be busier than ever, or you might feel like you’re in a lull. Either way, invest in yourself, and you will see a return down the road. 

Bottom Line

Although many people are struggling financially, with their health, and for many other reasons right now, you do have the chance to put your loan officer skills to good use. Todd says that top producers should be ready to say, “I am fired up and excited. I am ready to make a difference.”

Put those coaching best practices into action in your mortgage crm.