Lauren Boland decided to forego her originally chartered path for a legal career and the mortgage industry has been all the better for it. Her 18 years in mortgage and 5 years with the broker channel has put on full display her tenacity and readiness to solve client problems in an incredibly dynamic environment.
What interested you in starting a career in the mortgage industry?
Like three generations before me, I was expected to go to law school. At the same time, a few of my friends were making really good money working at a mortgage company, Ameriquest. No experience was required and I knew that if my friends could do the job, so could I. I joined and my career in the mortgage industry was set in motion.
What’s a career highlight you’re most proud of?
Starting LBL Mortgage is the achievement I’m most proud of in my life. There are always “doubters” in life that tell you in one way or another, for whatever reason that they doubt your ability to succeed. I had those too. I think for anyone that it makes the feeling of success just that much sweeter.
What’s unique about your business?
I see trends in the mortgage industry that enables me to better serve our customers. This could be processes, time frames to closings or access to better rates and fees. Our industry is always moving and I believe my ability to see past the business model in the present makes LBL Mortgage better than lenders in our area. There are big changes coming to our industry that I believe will continue our upward momentum in loan volume, but you better be ready for change or you won’t make it.
What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve faced in your career?
The biggest obstacle has been training new employees. There is a lack of qualified people to hire who can step in and do the job. We have been successful with hiring “green”. Instead of hiring someone who fluffed their resume and doesn’t know anything, we have tried completely green people who have a background in accounting or financial servicing. There is a wave of staff that are, quite frankly, going to retire after this refinance wave, and we need to find the most effective way to recruit and train “green” employees to fill that gap.
Where do you turn for leadership advice?
I have a mentor who I have known for 12 years. She is the reason I am the leader and risk-taker that I am today. She has taught me so many things but most of all how to be a “Big Boss Lady”. When to push and when to let go. When to take a risk and trust yourself and when to pull back and let someone else take the risk. I would not be where I am today without her guidance, compassion and experience.
What is your business philosophy?
Do what you say you are going to do.
If you could go back to your first day in the industry, what advice would you give yourself?
Start your own mortgage company sooner!