Years ago, a local competitor asked me, “Why do you attend all these mortgage conferences? What a waste of time.” I responded “because that’s where Professionals learn.” Several years later one of his originators had their license revoked for copying and pasting signatures!
Not all associations or conferences make sense for all participants. Being a member of more than one association can yield better results than the voice of one. When reviewing conference agendas narrow goals down to the one-to-three people or companies, you will feel really GREAT about having a face-to-face meeting with. Set up meetings prior to the event. And, if you think this is old school, you are definitely missing out!
Conferences can be a party or…a great investment! When considering attending a mortgage conference, evaluate time and results; how much time are you willing to spend out of the office and what are the desired results.
No one association can do it all. Different associations allow you to achieve many objectives. Each one brings something different to the table. National and state Strategic Memberships are important. So, what’s your strategy to improve your business? What are you doing to inspire your originators? Are you looking for products, lenders, education, certification, legislation? Sitting down with lobbyists and expressing your concerns about issues we all face (and we have a lot of them), is a win! It may not get fixed right away, but you had a voice and we have to start somewhere.
A week ago, I attended the NAMB National Annual Conference, in crazy Las Vegas! In addition to earning the Certified Veteran Loan Specialist designation, I also co-taught a new Certified Credit Specialist course with Ginny Ferguson, CMC from California – (Ginny-East Coast meets Deb-West Coast! We had a blast!
So what to expect? It’s obvious, but you get out what you put in. Professional development should be at least one of your goals. Conferences offer opportunities for face-to-face meetings that never would have occurred with an email or text. Face-to-face rapport cannot be duplicated. New legislation that will affect your business, how the real estate industry will dramatically impact the mortgage business and tidbits on marketing were all presented. There were lenders I never knew existed, with products I never heard of. Someone from FHA spoke, we discussed issues facing veteran’s closings, learned from a lobbyist about the W-2 vs 1099 issue (which is my next post) and the issue of consumer choice in builder transactions; a common issue, that every MLO is challenged by.
Before a conference; set reasonable expectations, identify your objectives, set a strategy and go for it! That means preparation, reading the entire agenda, looking up speakers bios, scheduling must haves and maybes, knowing what topics speakers will present…and don’t caught up in the hype! Look for meaningful content and relationships that you can apply to your business the day you get back!
After a conference; review all contacts made, business cards, selfies, notes that should trigger conversations and then, follow-up with everyone! Benefits will exceed costs! Post your attendance on your social media sites. Let your customers and referral partners know you are seeking excellence. #conference #mortgageprofessional #icareaboutmycareer #investinexcellence #learnthebusiness
Business is about making carefully thought out decisions everyday and determining desired outcomes, established well in advance and sticking with a plan. Oh and…watch the imbibing! Just saying’!
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