Know Your BDM: Michael Mann, Interbay

Know Your BDM: Michael Mann, Interbay

 

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

I cover the South East region including the M25 corridor and I look after 190 key accounts which include clubs, networks and direct agencies.

 

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

Relationship management for me is all about listening and really getting to know the broker and understanding their business. This background work is really useful when it comes to an application as this helps me to shape the right deal for the broker and ensure a positive customer outcome. It also means that I am better prepared to negotiate on behalf of the broker if any complications arise. I can only work effectively, if I have all the information upfront, so please don’t hold anything back.

 

What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?

Good communication skills without doubt are an absolute must, alongside strong interpersonal skills. Keeping calm under pressure is also high up on the list.

 

What personal skill would you most like to improve on?

Sometimes my enthusiasm may need to be turned down a notch – my colleagues are the best in their fields and at times I need to stand back and let them get on with the task in hand.

 

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

Anything is achievable if you put your mind to it.

 

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

I helped one of InterBay’s broker partners on a £4m deal where the client was struggling to obtain finance and getting very close to his deadlines. I quickly arranged to meet up with the broker and the client to gather as much information as possible which included detailed explanations of some blemishes. It was quite an adrenaline rush to get all the pieces in place but we got the case over the line within the deadline.

 

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

I would revise the definition of a portfolio landlord as in today’s buy-to-let sector, four mortgaged properties seems low. The rules were designed to look at the wider portfolio when underwriting a new buy-to-let mortgage and larger portfolios, say ten properties or more, is where you’d need to do a greater degree of due diligence. I’d make this a top priority as it would certainly help ensure underwriting is more risk based.

 

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

I fell into banking by accident to be honest but I’ve been in the industry for over 15 years and enjoy meeting new people, building positive relationships and bringing a solution to the table. Luckily this job involves all those elements and I really enjoy the daily variety so I would call it a happy accident.

 

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

I would probably become a developer or investor as I’ve picked up lots of knowledge along the way.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

A policeman or a member of the armed forces.

 

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

To predict the future.

 

What’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked?

“Daddy, do you shampoo your eyebrows?”

 

 

 

Know Your BDM: Zeenat Shaffi, Gatehouse Bank

Know Your BDM: Zeenat Shaffi, Gatehouse Bank

 

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

I cover parts of central and south London and the whole of the South East region. I look after 150 broker firms with approximately 230 broker relationships.

 

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

Understanding a broker’s business is fundamental to establishing good relationships. It allows me to adapt the level of support I provide in a way that suits them and their business.

Communication is also key: keeping them updated and providing training and guidance when they need it and also just picking up the phone to them or calling when things don’t go according to plan.

Also, being proactive and acting as a bridge between brokers and the bank, whilst making it easier and simpler to do business with us. That includes helping them with the systems and talking through the case. Managing brokers’ expectations is critical and is something that is really appreciated, because it helps save time in the long run.

 

What personal talent is most valuable in doing your job?

Being able to relate to people, and being approachable. It is valuable in understanding the banks, the criteria and products, systems and process, to ensure the broker has trust in my abilities. They are trusting you with their business and clients. Being a talker also helps, although some may say that’s the reason for their headache.

 

What personal skills would you most like to improve on?

I would like to develop a better sense of direction, I rely too heavily on Google Maps and I am constantly getting lost. Whilst everyone builds a contingency and allowance for traffic and delays for their journey, I have to build in an extra one.

 

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

Great things never come from comfort zones.

 

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

I have been very fortunate to be involved in various and different deals. My best so far has been a development finance deal for a client who was completely knocking down two houses to make a large home. I was overseeing the whole deal from start to finish and seeing it transform from two average houses to a massive bespoke home. Knowing that I helped make it happen was great.

 

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

There needs to be a better balance between regulation and customer journey. The overall process at times can be quite daunting and scary for consumers.

 

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

I love the idea that I am part of a department which is instrumental in the overall growth of the business. I still get a thrill from coming out of a meeting, knowing that you have really helped support people with their business. It’s also very satisfying to see the value you have added to the bank when those relationships and businesses have grown; especially when a new broker comes back to do repeat business.

 

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

I would like to be a commercial finance manager. Whilst I have been involved in some elements of this previously I’d like to be able to have a bigger focus in this area.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

A lawyer — it seems to have all the qualities I thrive on, lots of challenges, meeting and assisting people to the point that it makes a real difference in their lives and make some profound changes. It requires a lot of analytical and logical thinking and focuses on finding solutions.

 

If you could have one superpower what would it be?

Superficially to know my handbag will always match my shoes. But on a serious note, having the ability to heal would be a pretty cool power to have.

 

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

I was once asked in an interview, if I was to be a fruit, what it would be and why. I just couldn’t think of any fruit that would link to the role I had applied for and still don’t think I could answer that question to this day. I left the interview very puzzled.

Know Your BDM: Justin Cooper, Octane Capital

Know Your BDM: Justin Cooper, Octane Capital

 

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

I look after 40 or so brokers in my area, which is London and the South of England.

 

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

Trying to inject a bit of fun into proceedings and generally being yourself is a good place to start. Relationships with brokers work best when they’re natural rather than corporate and formal. And it goes without saying that the better the service you provide to brokers, the more likely they will be to send business your way in future. Above all, just be yourself.

 

What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?

I’d like to think I can communicate with people fairly well, although clearly that’s for them to decide, this definitely helps transactions complete as smoothly as they can and keeps everyone happy. You need to be a multi-tasker as you can be juggling countless cases at the same time and you also need to be flexible about your hours to meet tight deadlines.

 

What personal talent would you most like to improve on?

I’d like to say I have the patience of a saint, but that’s not true. I like to get things done quickly and have a dread of missing deadlines so sometimes I can become a tad overenthusiastic, shall we say.

 

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

To always enjoy your job. A colleague once told me: “Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” It’s a cliché, I know, but it’s true. I always have this advice in the front of my mind. And thankfully, I really enjoy what I do and the people I work alongside.

 

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

A few years ago I was approached by a broker to help provide a loan to support the acquisition of a £20m office building in London on behalf of a Dragon from Dragons’ Den, with, errrr, five days’ notice.

 

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

This is a great question. I would probably look at introducing a minimum entry level qualification for those looking to enter the specialist finance industry. It’s a specialist sector and it needs specialist knowledge. There should be a minimum barrier to entry.

 

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

I have always been extremely competitive and I’m also highly motivated when it comes to reaching sales targets. Also, working as a BDM allows me to have an element of control over my earnings.

 

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

Definitely a property developer. The challenges of building new homes from the ground up right through to sale is something that I respect and would take great pride in achieving.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

When I was a young lad my friends and I were completely obsessed with cars, so I always wanted to be a mechanic.

 

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

To be able to fly. Those that know me are aware that I have had a prosthetic leg for the best part of 35 years so walking can be pretty tiring. Being able to fly would definitely be a dream come true.

 

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

I was once asked if I would be prepared, for charity, to jump out of a plane at 10,000 feet without a parachute. As charitable as I like to think I am, I couldn’t possibly agree. Hitting the ground at 200mph is not my idea of a good day. The person in question then explained that I would be strapped to an expert who would be wearing a parachute big enough for the two of us.

 

 

Know Your BDM: Helen Mountain, Vida Homeloans

Know Your BDM: Helen Mountain, Vida Homeloans

 

How many advisers and broker firms do you cover in your role?

My area stretches from Southampton across to Kent and up to South West London, so I have lots of brokers representing a hugely diverse and differing demographic.

 

How do you successfully organise and deal with business on a daily basis?

Having such a large area, my ability to organise my day is vital to my success. Through a combination of geographical zoning, using technology and with a hint of cold calling thrown in for good measure, I’m able to maximise my face-to-face calls while ensuring telephone broker contact is maintained.

 

What issues come up time and time again?

Apart from the obvious clarification around our policy points, I’m often asked about our processes for business submission as many of my contacts are new to Vida. Satisfyingly, their next call to me is often another new enquiry as our systems are designed to make the broker journey as efficient as possible.

 

What do you wish brokers understood about your job?

That my broker relationships are key to both of us being successful and that I work tirelessly to add value. Balancing my efforts externally to foster trusted business partners while liaising with internal colleagues can be a tricky process and one that thankfully, I’ve become rather adept at.

 

What do you think is the most important attribute of a good BDM?

Determination and organisation are absolutely key. Not only does this mean I can position appropriate and tailored lending solutions to each new business enquiry, but can proactively prioritise my activity to ensure returning calls, answering emails and following up are all effectively addressed as required.

 

When you’re unavailable to be contacted by telephone, what’s the second-best way for brokers to get in touch?

The easiest way to get in touch if I’m not available is by leaving a voicemail or to send an email. I try to return calls and emails as soon as possible and at the very least, the same day. And of course brokers can always call the Vida telephone BDM team as an alternative.

 

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

I’d ensure that the FCA had a more granular understanding of brokers’ day-to-day activities, concerns and pressures so that they could position regulation roll-out to the specialist market in a more favourable way.

 

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

Working in the retail banking sector some 30 years ago, I quickly realised I needed a more challenging role and progressed to being a BDM 18 long years ago. During my time within financial services, both in the UK and Australia, I’ve gained lots of experience in both creating and maintaining business relationships which, in my current role at Vida, has proved invaluable.

 

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

For me, it’s all about trust and working together. By maintaining regular contact and providing ways that Vida’s policy can help, I’m constantly adding value to my broker relationships. I’ll always do what I say I’ll do and I strive to provide the best possible service I can to both my brokers and their clients. I want to be viewed as the go-to BDM for as many appropriate enquiries as possible.

 

And how do you establish and maintain good relationships internally?

Since joining Vida it’s been clear there is a common drive to constantly improve our broker proposition and my understanding of the roles of others in various functions at Vida’s head office has ensured we all pull together to deliver this. Oh, and a few post team meeting drinks with the head office crew usually helps as well.

 

What’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked?

Random (slightly inebriated) guy on the last tube home: ‘Would you rather fight one giant duck or 100 tiny ducks?’
Safe to say I got off at the next station without being pursued by either option.

 

And finally, what did you want to be growing up?

Apart from my schoolgirl desire to be a dancer on Top of the Pops, my real passion was gymnastics.  Sadly, my adult coordination let me down and the world of finance beckoned as a close second.

 

 

Know Your BDM: Donna Johnson, One Family

Know Your BDM: Donna Johnson, One Family

 

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

I’m based in the North West and cover as many as will welcome me through their doors.

 

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

Taking a keen interest in my brokers and their business is a good platform, along with regular communication and engagement – plus Krispy Kreme’s tend to go down well.

 

What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?

Listening skills are important. Knowing your customer is key, so when my brokers tell me about themselves personally on top of their business it’s nice to touch back on that in future appointments.

 

What personal skill would you most like to improve on?

Industry knowledge about the lifetime market. Coming from the specialist lending area this is a whole new world.

 

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

Never be afraid to ask, there are no stupid questions in this industry. Every day is a school day.

 

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

A broker referred a case to me 12 months ago, his client was looking to purchase a care home in which he was also the manager of. The funds were raised and spread across three properties, his residential property and two buy-to-let properties and the funds were raised using second charge mortgages. This was a great and cost-effective alternative to commercial lending.

 

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

Oh, I’m struggling with this one, can I phone a friend?

 

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

It wasn’t a difficult decision being a people person to go down this career path. Being out and meeting new people is great; the financial industry is so diverse and exciting to be a part of.

 

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

An interior designer – I have a slight obsession with home DIY.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

A detective – watching Colombo with my dad on a Sunday afternoon possibly had an influence on that.

 

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

To be invisible – I could have some fun with that.

 

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

“Would you like ketchup on your bacon sandwich?” Absolutely not, brown sauce is a given isn’t it?

 

Know Your BDM: Heidi Lang, The Nottingham for Intermediaries

Know Your BDM: Heidi Lang, The Nottingham for Intermediaries

 

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

I cover a total of 52 postcodes in total, ranging from Wales, Lancashire, East Anglia and all London locations. I also look after brokers from Scotland and Ireland, as although we don’t lend in those locations they may wish to place business in England and Wales.

 

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

I make contact with all my brokers over the phone – this includes welcome calls when they first register, a thank you call when they do business and regular catch-up calls to ensure they are kept up to date. I am head office-based in Nottingham so I am available five days a week for brokers to call or email me.
I am always on hand to discuss any criteria or potential cases and happy to put forward any requests for exceptions to policy where I believe there is a case for us to lend. I work closely with the underwriters; only being a stone’s throw away from them is a real advantage.

 

What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?

I’d say building a rapport over the phone, as it can be quite difficult to keep it interesting when talking about criteria or trying to sell a service. I firmly believe it’s about personality, as well as being articulate and interesting, and of course knowledgeable.

 

What personal talent would you most like to improve on?

I am currently learning how to kick box so I would like to improve on my flexibility.

 

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

My first bit of advice was to remember that good customer service is key. Be prepared to go over and above to help a customer as first impressions count. Secondly, manage your team in a firm but fair way. Be supportive, flexible and have a willingness to invest time with your team and you will find that they will then be willing and flexible for you.

 

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

The Nottingham launched into the retirement interest-only (RIO) market in February; I took the opportunity to educate my brokers ahead of the launch and was very pleased to have the first RIO case to come into us on day one. The clients were looking to enhance their lifestyle by capital raising to improve their current residence and thus making their later years more comfortable.
It was great to be able to help them do this, a solution for lending in later life is really important. It was good to be involved in the first RIO application so definitely memorable and pleasing to say there have been more since.

 

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

I would want to support the younger borrower better. I would like it to be easier for a first-time buyer to get on the property ladder.

 

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

I joined the financial services industry from the tender age of 16 and have developed from an admin role, through to customer service, management of staff and managers. Business development was the next step to my career by keeping in the same line of work but promoting the society’s lending ambitions.

 

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

I feel like I have done most things within this industry that I wanted to do. There was a time some years ago that I wanted to own an estate agency business, however I am glad that I didn’t pursue that line of business because I wouldn’t be doing what I do now.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

I have always wanted to be a TV presenter. I remember getting a microphone for Christmas. I can’t sing so I had to think of something else I could use it for. I ended up going round my family interviewing them.
I would like to be on the panel of Loose Women. I am a good listener, have an opinion and will always challenge where appropriate. They are missing out not having me on there.

 

If you could have one super power, what would it be?

I would like to be invisible. I often say to myself: “If only I could have been a fly on the wall.” That way I wouldn’t need to be a fly.

 

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

My daughter asked me a few years ago if her life would have been any different if I didn’t have any children.

 

Know Your BDM: Leanne Arundell, Leeds Building Society

Know Your BDM: Leanne Arundell, 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.

 

 

 

 

 

Know Your BDM: Gavin Kyle, Foundation Home Loans

Know Your BDM: Gavin Kyle, Foundation Home Loans

 

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

I manage a team of seven internal BDMs (IBDM) who between them cover all of England & Wales. I also manage the sales support team who make sure we can register new brokers who want to place business with us, and who support the wider sales team in their day-to-day role.

 

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

My team deals with inbound calls from brokers who want to discuss their new cases, and determine if the case fits our criteria. The IBDMs also make outbound calls to brokers within their region to keep them up to date on our proposition and products as we launch new products.

 

What personal skill is most valuable in doing your job?

For me it’s all about having strong communication skills. Being able to communicate with my team, brokers and our colleagues is crucial.

 

What personal skill would you most like to improve on?

As someone who is currently learning to drive at a rather late age, it’s definitely my driving. I’ve improved a lot over the last few weeks so watch out for me on the roads soon.

 

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

Take care of your people and they will take care of the work. This has served me well in my career to date.

 

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

One of my team recently had a broker submit a large portfolio of properties with total loans valued at £5m. Although I wasn’t directly involved, seeing the hard work that he put in, and the sense of pride and satisfaction he got from it, it was extremely rewarding as a manager.

 

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

In the world of residential, I would remove the requirement to cap Loan to Income ratios (LTIs). The replacement of income multiples with a more detailed review of actual income and expenditure was a positive development, however the regulator still requires the lender to cap LTIs on residential loans to 15 per cent. If the new approach of affordability confirms the loans including rate increases are affordable, then is this cap necessary?

If I stretch the question a bit and could also be Chancellor of the Exchequer for a day, I would change both the stamp duty on second and subsequent properties, and the taxation of buy to lets.

 

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

I’ve worked in financial services for a number of years and I suppose I fell into sales as my career progressed. I’ve always enjoyed working in a fast-paced and targeted environment, and the buzz of a busy and successful team is what gets me out of bed in the morning.

 

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

I think I would like to spend more time outdoors in the summer so maybe a gardener on a large estate – even though I have definitely not got green fingers.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

My mother tells me when I was really young I used to say I wanted to be a doctor – my wooziness at the sight of blood quickly put an end to that. My dad was a fireman for many years so that was another early childhood dream.

 

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

I would love to be able to fly – this would save me a fortune on flights when I go home to Ireland to visit family and friends.

 

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

I continually get asked what part of Scotland I’m from. Coming from Northern Ireland and having a strong Belfast accent, this always baffles me here in England.

 

 

Know Your BDM: Nadeem Iqbal, Accord Mortgages

Know Your BDM: Nadeem Iqbal, Accord Mortgages

 

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

I currently support approximately 100 broker firms across my area which broadly covers Greater Manchester.

 

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

The biggest factor in maintaining excellent relationships is to provide a high-quality service. This means returning calls, responding to email quickly and going the extra mile to be helpful. An excellent BDM can be a crucial factor in where a broker places business.

 

What personal talent is most valuable in doing your job?

Integrity. To gain credibility and the trust of brokers, a good BDM must be honest, sensitive, empathetic and knowledgeable in all relevant areas. They should be keen to support the broker in every way possible and therefore provide the highest level of service. In my view, all these things define integrity.

 

What personal skill would you most like to improve on?

Technology. Online tools like LinkedIn are increasingly playing an important part in communicating with brokers, so I’m developing my knowledge to ensure that I can keep pace.

 

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

A negative situation always provides an opportunity to gain credibility. For example, if a broker is unhappy about something, pick up the phone and speak to them urgently. This shows that you care and are prepared to hear their views and then do what is required to resolve it to their satisfaction. The BDMs most respected by brokers are the ones who immediately take ownership for the situation and resolve it quickly.

 

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

I have had a few high-profile professional footballer cases, however, the ones that tend to linger in the mind are the relatively small cases where we help someone secure their dream property when they thought it might not be possible. Last year, a client had experienced some adverse credit and was struggling to find a lender to take them on at 95 per cent loan to value. The broker contacted me and we managed to get it agreed. We made the broker look like the hero but, more importantly, made the client’s dream come true. The feedback from the broker was truly moving.

 

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

I would find a way to make compliance requirements for brokers easier. While it is necessary to safeguard clients and ensure they are fully informed, many brokers believe it has gone a little too far and often leaves less time to write more business.

 

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

It provides an opportunity to make a very tangible contribution to the business. BDM relationships with brokers are key to obtaining business and brokers will tell you that a good BDM will offer them more confidence in using a lender. Also, despite all the changes and improvements in technology over the years, one thing has remained constant – it is still a people business and nothing can replicate that. What I love more than anything else is to get to know my brokers, understand their business and offer solutions that help their clients. I have brokers who will be my friends after I hang up my BDM boots.

 

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

If I fancied a change, I would be a mortgage broker. It is a tough business but extremely rewarding as brokers play the central role in helping clients achieve their dreams. They deal with the estate agent, the lender, the solicitor, sometimes an accountant and often other parties, and take on that responsibility to remove all the stress away from their clients and give them the best possible solution.

 

What did you want to be growing up?

A professional cricketer, but the glamour of the BDM world was too much to resist.

 

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

If I could fly like Superman to my broker meetings, it would be so much better than being stuck in traffic jams around Manchester.

 

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

While in mid-flow explaining our key USPs, one female broker who I was meeting for the first time interrupted me and said excitedly: “Oh my God, your eye lashes are amazing. How do you get them like that?” And of course, it is true – they are amazing.

 

 

 

Know Your BDM – Andrew Sadler, Ipswich Building Society

Know Your BDM – Andrew Sadler, Ipswich Building Society

 

What locations and how many advisers and broker firms do you cover in your role?
With us able to lend anywhere in England or Wales it gives me 58,000 square miles of mortgage lending to go at, and it can feel like I do that many miles each year. Much of my time is in London, Norfolk, and west of the M11. As well as around 170 firms, I also work closely with the club and network mortgage desks.

How do you establish and maintain a good relationship with brokers?
By being approachable and there when needed – I always try to return calls straight away and will always be honest. When you deal in the more quirky cases and niche areas, there’s always a lot to understand on a case so it’s important that the response is accurate.

What personal talent/skill is most valuable in doing your job?
Bouncebackability – you need to be persistent and be able to take the rough with the smooth. Accept the praise, acknowledge and learn from criticism, and always be positive.

What personal talent/skill would you most like to improve on?
Juggling everything that comes my way – it’s a constant job to prioritise everything that flies at you.

What’s the best bit of career-related advice you’ve ever been given?
Go home. No seriously, it’s all too easy to lose sight of the right work/life balance and you need to know when it’s time to switch off. It also works well to sleep on a problem and come back the next day with a fresh approach.

What is the most interesting/memorable property deal you’ve been involved in?
Two spring to mind; firstly, a £1.7m self build case we did last year for a beautiful house that no one else would lend on, and secondly my own first house, a small mews cottage just outside Ipswich which gave me an insight into the whole housing process.

If you were head of the FCA for the day, what would you change about regulation in the mortgage industry?
Interestingly, the FCA have started to review the area I’d choose, which is further support for ‘mortgage prisoners’.

What was your motivation for choosing business development as a career?
I like dealing with people and love that every day is different. An opportunity arose to look at either sales or admin, and I took the sales route. That was 23 years ago, and it’s been the sales arena for me ever since.

If you could do any other job in the property sector, what would it be and why?
I’d love to be a property developer of high end property… who am I kidding, I’d love to live in a high end property that I’d done up myself!

What did you want to be growing up?
A footballer – but that was never going to be, sadly.

If you could have one super power, what would it be?
Speed – I’d love to be able to run faster than a speeding bullet.

And finally, what’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked?
… ha, not sure I can say! It was probably one at a conference after a couple of drinks – that’s when all the best ones come out.