It’s not unusual for company owners to get productivity inspiration from other businesses.
AUSUN Finance property portfolio manager and 2018 Young Guns finalist Thomas Tang gets his ideas from an industry that’s distantly far from broking: fast food.
“I treat my business like McDonald’s,” Tang told MPA. “I break down each small step of the loan application, and systemise the process. Then, lastly, I develop its efficiency and accuracy.”
Tang has used this technique to train casual staff; one of whom is a home-based mother who required a flexible work set-up to handle data entry. She can complete one deal within 24 to 48 business hours.
Three months after setting up this process, Tang hasn’t touched a podium system and can free up two to four hours per case to focus on customer and business development, sourcing new businesses, and policy research.
“I dare say I’m an expert in residential lending inside out, A to Z. It’s all about doing the small things well,” Tang said.
More than a broker
Tang considers himself to be a financial adviser, not just a mortgage broker. He listens to his clients’ needs, and helps them understand the benefits and costs that come with their loan. If needed, he liaises with their accountant and solicitor to ensure the loan structure fits into their tax and estate planning needs.
According to Tang, while the brokers’ business model may be similar in many ways, each will be distinguished by dedication and passion. His team goes through a minimum of three hours of training each week, and constantly explores new digital resources that fit their client categories or team’s habits.
Tang named his team the “da Vinci Squad” to convey the art and science of residential property investment.
Being honest is Tang’s chief principle of selling. “I’ve learned to set up the range of expectations with clients. I let them know I will fight for the best deal for them,” Tang said.
To be totally transparent with his clients, Tang discloses how he gets paid and his method of commission. He explains up-front fees, and shows why it’s adding value, and not costing clients. He also explains how trail gives his team the opportunity to serve them longer than banks.
Tang said most clients appreciate the business model, and how it can benefit them and his team in the long term.
Similarly, as banks, brokers and clients grow in fear because of ongoing changes in the property finance industry, Tang hopes the industry sets up higher entry-level regulations and becomes more transparent, so it “can earn back the trust of both consumers and loan writers”.