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Know Your BDM: Leanne Arundell, Leeds Building Society

  • 02/08/2019
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Know Your BDM: Leanne Arundell, Leeds Building Society
This week Mortgage Solutions is speaking to Leanne Arundell, business development manager for Leeds Building Society.


What locations and how many advisers and broker firms do you cover in your role?

I cover Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire. So that means I look after all advisers in Luton, Milton Keynes, Hemel Hempstead, Enfield, St Albans, Stevenage, Watford and the surrounding areas.


How do you establish and maintain a good relationship with brokers?

The main thing for me is regular contact which is key to growing solid partnerships. It can be as simple as keeping everyone updated with criteria changes, new exclusive products or being available when needed.
Building trust and a reputation for reliability with brokers is vital to building and maintaining lasting relationships.


What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?

The adage of people buy from people couldn’t be more relevant, so being able to listen and understand the needs of advisers I help are the personal skills that are the most valuable to me.
This helps me assess each situation and then work closely with our product and mortgage lending teams to achieve the best results for brokers and their clients.


What personal skill would you most like to improve on?

Often it’s easy to focus solely on the day-to-day, and sometimes personal development can be neglected. So this year I’m focusing on my internal stakeholder relationship skills – something that was a lot easier when I was based in our Leeds head office.


What’s the best bit of career-related advice you’ve ever been given?

It’s a classic but I think it would be ‘treat people as you would like to be treated’.


What is the most memorable property deal you’ve been involved in?

The ones that stick in your mind are those where the homebuyer is in difficult or unusual circumstances. One in particular involved someone going through a divorce, which meant they were going through two of the more stressful things in life. Keeping in regular contact with the broker and updating them ultimately made the process straightforward for the customer and they were able to get the result they wanted.


If you were head of the FCA for the day, what would you change about regulation in the mortgage industry?

Not necessarily regulation, but it would be great if as an industry we could try to reduce technical jargon and make things clearer and easier for customers to understand.


What was your motivation for choosing business development as a career?

I’ve always been involved in the financial sector and started my career as a mortgage processor. This was great grounding but I’m always looking for new challenges and the BDM role really appealed.
The opportunity to get out from behind a desk, meet people face-to-face and really help brokers and their customers was a significant factor in the decision.


If you could do any other job in the property sector, what would it be and why?

A role where I could train those looking to move into the mortgage sector.


What did you want to be growing up?

A teacher. It seems like there’s a common theme that’s been with me from a young age.


If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

Teleportation – it would really help with the traffic.


And finally, what’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked?

If you were an animal, what would you be? It’s a common icebreaker but it’s one that I always overthink and end up picking something that doesn’t really reflect me as a person. If you want to know, I’d be a dove. Always looking for peaceful resolutions of issues and making sure everyone is happy.






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