How many advisers do you cover in your role?
We have approximately 2,500 registered advisers for lifetime mortgages and I could theoretically speak to all of these.
How do I organise and deal with business on a daily basis?
The day starts with responding to any e-mails or calls received over night and then I move onto whichever campaign we are working on. This can be following on from receiving attendee lists from industry, or our own events.
What issues come up time and time again?
This normally relates to underwriting queries and product understanding. As all of our business is conducted via our online portal, we can also get calls regarding log in details and the like.
What do you wish brokers understood about your job?
Although our underwriting is very flexible, once a case has been considered and declined we are not able to wave a magic wand to agree the case. That’s not a common occurrence though.
What is the most important attribute of a good BDM?
Being available and being prompt in returning calls if you’re not available immediately. Also, being honest and open in your dealings with advisers.
When you’re unavailable to be contacted by phone, what’s the second-best way for brokers to get in touch?
With the nature of my role I am constantly on the phone so either leave a voicemail or send an email.
If you were head of the FCA for the day, what would you change about regulation in the mortgage industry?
We have to have regulation in this market and hope that the experts are suitably qualified to design these and make them workable. I can’t think of any to change.
What was your motivation for choosing business development as a career?
From my early days as a trainee assistant manager with Burnley Building Society, through various branch roles with numerous banks and building societies, business development was a natural progression.
How do you establish and maintain a good relationship with brokers?
I am always trying to give first class service and if we cannot assist try to suggest another lender which might.
And how do you establish and maintain good relationships internally?
I always try to assist colleagues and will sometimes take on tasks that are not necessarily part of my role in order to help. I also try to remain positive and cheerful.
And finally, what did you want to be growing up?
I’ve loved football all my life and often dreamed of becoming a pro-footballer, ideally for Wolves, but after unsuccessful trials as a teenager for Reading and Brighton, I just played county league. Although I did score an FA Cup goal for Lancing FC in a preliminary round tie.
I would also have loved to live on a space station for six months, so an astronaut would have been an acceptable second place.