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The Three Words Every Originator Must Know to Succeed in 2018

Brian Sacks
Jan 29, 2018

While we all “hope”2018 will be another good year for the real estate and mortgage business, I think we all realize deep down inside that “hope” is truly not a strategy. As I have coached Originators this year and have spoken around the country, I have found that everyone has goals, but few truly accomplish them.
There are many reasons why these goals are not accomplished, and I hope you will read this article to avoid making these same mistakes. Perhaps the main reason for failing is that we don’t have an actual goal. You cannot just say you want to do well … it must be quantified, it must be written down and it must be planned.
Go back and re-read the previous entry before you move forward
You cannot just “hope” to have a good year or achieve any goal. Instead, you must clearly state it and create a sound plan to attain it. Maybe, most importantly, you must have a way to track your progress and see if you are on track or if you have gotten off track somehow.
Here’s an example … I will earn $100,000 in 2018. Notice I said “will” not “want.” I will get to this subtle yet important distinction later.
My average commission is $2,000 from an average loan of $200,000 at 100bps. I now know that I need to do 50 loans a year or five a month (accounting for fallout) and one per week.
Now for the hard part … how?
Unfortunately, many Loan Officers come up with the first part, but never get to the hard part which is actually “planning” where these deals will originate. It’s nice to say that you want to earn $100,000 and that you need 50 loans in order to do so, but now the big question is “How will you generate them?”
You need to think of your business as a four-legged chair, meaning you should always have at least three to four marketing methods you are always working on. The reason to think about this as a chair is because a chair with just one or two legs will crumble, but a chair with four legs is very solid.
Here’s an example from my own production:
1. Realtors
2. Referrals from past clients and other referral sources
3. Publicity, articles, radio, TV and books
4. Direct to consumers: Direct mail, Facebook and Webinars
Important note: I did not say 34 … I said three or four marketing methods!
All too often, we find ourselves coming up with the next big idea or the next shiny object and going down a different path. When you try to do everything, you will likely your find yourself doing nothing!
So … let’s talk about the three words no one else mentions that are critical to every Originator’s success. Are you ready? I mean really ready because you cannot simply read this and benefit, but you truly need to ponder and consider, and think and act.
Let me break each of these down for you. They are from the popular book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, who said a person can accomplish whatever they can conceive, believe and achieve. If you miss any one of these key ingredients, you cannot succeed!
Step 1: Conceive
We have spent the entire first part of this article discussing how to conceive and actually break it down into steps that are attainable. If you just glanced over that part, go back now with a highlighter and write this plan down.
Step 2: Believe
This is going to sound harsh, so get ready for some no BS advice. I have watched Originators for the past 30 years who succeeded when they had everything stacked against them, while others who had every advantage simply withered and left the business.  It’s actually been a topic that has always fascinated me and I have dedicated my life to studying.
I want you to write this down …
“You will only achieve to the level of your current self-image.”
Ever see someone do really well, better than expected and then melt down? It may have even happened to you?
The reason is that the person exceeded their self-image. To put it in our terms, let’s say you want to close $12,000,000 and you have a month where you close $2,500,000. I can bet you that the next few months, you will close $1,000,000 or less because you have performed over your current self-image. Just because you closed $2,500,000 one month does not make you a $30,000,000 producer.
“You will act and perform consistently with your self-image.”
Keep in mind … this does not happen consciously, but rather, under the radar subconsciously.
I could and probably will write a book just on this topic, but for now, really take some quiet time to make sure your goals are in sync with your self-image of who YOU are … not who you “want to be,” but who you truly are.
Step 3: Achieve
We are now finally at the last step, and while I have quoted a book by Napoleon Hill earlier in this article, I have to also give you a warning: You cannot just Think and Grow Rich. You must actually act.
Now, don’t misunderstand me, you must have positive thoughts. In fact, you will act according to your thoughts, whether positive or negative. The point though is that you now have a written goal, you know what you must do to achieve that goal. Hopefully, you even have the time to believe it. But, you won’t achieve without action. Not to sound corny, but it’s true when you hear that you must work your plan and plan your work.
Here’s to a great 2018!

Brian Sacks is a nationally-renowned mortgage expert who has career closing of more than 5,924 transactions Brian Sacks is a nationally-renowned mortgage expert who has career closing of more than 5,924 transactions for more than $1 billion. He has trained, consulted and coached tens of thousands of loan officers and company owners over the past 32 years on how to close more loans, make more money, and still have a life. Brian is the host of "Top Originator Secrets," which can be seen weekly on Mortgage News Network and on his blog. You can get more information and grab your free report on "How to Get Agents Chasing You" at
This article originally appeared in the January 2018 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. 

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