There is a saying that people buy into the leader before they buy into the vision. If you want to affect change, it makes sense that people must trust you and the way you see the world. Building this foundation is a critical step in being an effective loan officer.
Thriving with resolute leadership traits and developing immense trust with clients, Amy Slotnick excels as one of the influential leaders in the dynamic mortgage industry.
Amy is committed to enabling continuous improvement. She is a source of innovation as she thrives to identify the processes that need re-engineering and implements the changes needed to bring about increased efficiency and accuracy. With this skill set, Amy is now working as Regional SVP and Mortgage Advisor at Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation.
In an exclusive interview with Insights Success, Amy shares her professional tenure and highlights her challenges along with significant achievements in the niche.
Below are the excerpts from the interview:
Briefly describe your professional journey up until now.
I started in the business in Operations. After 5 years, I became a loan officer. Over the course of my career, I have managed Operations teams, Sales Teams and owned my own business. I joined Fairway 16 years ago and found the perfect fit for my business goals.
What challenges did you face along the way?
I am fortunate that my career has been well supported by my colleagues and family. Most challenges have been around balancing the 24/7 demand of the sales side of this profession and family.
What significant impact have you brought to the Mortgage industry?
For the majority of my career, my focus has been on education for clients, business partners and colleagues. With a background in underwriting, I am able to bring an understanding of the “why” we do things to my clients, which makes the process smoother for them. I also host frequent trainings for my real estate partners to help them better understand our industry and show them how working with a true partner can help them grow their businesses.
They know that if I tell them a loan will work, then it works. Additionally, I have spent many years teaching and coaching new loan officers on Loan Origination 101. I work with clients and my colleagues in a way that helps them best to achieve their goals.
What methodologies do you implement that contribute to new growth opportunities?
I have built my business in becoming a lifelong trusted advisor for my clients. They know our relationship does not end when the current transaction closes, and they and their families can always come back to me with future questions.
We stay in touch through email, social media and yearly mortgage checkup appointments so that I am always top of mind. This has helped me to continue building repeat business and client referrals. I am fortunate that I am now helping many of the children and grandchildren of my past clients.
Tell us about Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation and its foundation pillar.
Fairway was founded on the principle of providing true service to our customers and doing it the Fair Way. The customer is both the loan officer who works for Fairway and the actual mortgage client. Our core values stress Speed to Respond and that is executed daily.
We are nationwide and have been voted the Best Place to Work for the most recent three consecutive years.
Fairway has two nonprofits. One is focused on providing support to Veterans and the other to our employees and their family/friends who are faced with life’s challenges – particularly around major illnesses.
What is your take on technology’s importance, and how are you leveraging it?
I think that technology is important of course. There are so many tools available to loan officers. It is about defining which tools best fit the way you practice your business. I have been doing this job for 40 years.
I still believe in taking applications personally to build relationships with my clients; however, we now implement technology to streamline the process for our clients in a way that is convenient, smooth and secure.
What will be the next significant change in the mortgage industry, and how are you preparing for it?
I wish I could predict that. While technology continues to adapt and grow, I do not believe that the loan officer will ever be fully replaced by it. The need to connect with people personally as they pursue home ownership is too important.
There is still a lot of grey in determining mortgage eligibility and, as such, I don’t think that technology can ever fully replace the human brain and the human touch.
What are your goals in the upcoming future?
I would say that my goals are to continue to support the growth and ambition of those who work with me. I would like to continue to originate loans while supporting my staff.
Eventually, I would like to stop originating and just work in our coaching platform while my partners carry on the legacy that I’ve built.
What advice would you like to give the next generation of aspiring business leaders?
There are bosses and there are leaders. Being a leader means listening first and speaking second (sometimes third). You need to lead by doing and showing, and not by telling and expecting. Technology is not a substitute for the human touch and the human heart. Leaders need to be compassionate and caring. Lead with patience, with calmness and with intent.