Your Loan Mowing Business

From: Ameen Kamadia

Being in business for yourself as a loan officer is like having a lawn: It demands your attention whether you like it or not. Over and above doing what got you started in this business in the first place-it requires doing other stuff that you'd rather not do.

Even if you hire people to do the stuff you'd rather not do, you still have to manage those people, which gives rise to a bunch of other stuff you'd rather not do. And even if you are a crackerjack people manager, there are all sorts of things you can't give away-planning, marketing, financial review, strategic decision making, other stuff like that-that not all that many loan officers are into doing. In fact, those last are the kinds of things that many of us put off doing until we must, whether it's because we don't like doing them or simply because we think we don't have time.

Anyway, your business demands your attention....very much like a lawn. When the lawn needs mowing, there isn't a lot of wiggle room in terms of putting it off. No matter how "not in the mood" you are to go out and start up the mower, there comes a point where you have to go take care of it. The damn grass keeps growing, and regardless of whether you like mowing or not, it must be attended to. And it's not just the mowing. There's edging, trimming, weeding, fertilizing, clean up, and a bunch of other tasks that have to be done.

The way I'm thinking of the model, the lawn itself is the everyday state of the business. The edging, trimming, etc. is the stuff I mentioned earlier-strategic decision making, marketing, financial review, planning, and so on. While you have to mow the lawn when it needs it, you can put off the other stuff a bit...but sooner or later you'll have to attend to the edges because things will look so ragged.

Whether we like it or not, the "lawn" of our businesses-the not-so-glamorous part of the landscape that is most noticeable only when it looks bad-has to be attended to regularly. It's not all that much fun, it's hot, sweaty, noisy work, but when we are done with the job, the great results really show. Very satisfying.

We can continue the analogy, I suppose. When you get mold or pests, you call in a specialist (a consultant) to help you. You can hire someone to do the lawn, which would make you an absentee owner, letting your hiree worry about keeping up with operations. Okay, I'll stop.

The point of all this is that all of us who are loan officer and who fill the primary operational role must do things we don't want to do, and if we put them off, our businesses will get ragged, weedy, and overgrown. Better to attend to the tasks and keep the business well-manicured, and then revel in the satisfaction when we get the results produced.

Happy Originating!


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