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Symond slams Diploma laggards as Aussie upskills

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Australian Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 09:00 AM Agree 0
EXCLUSIVE: Aussie's John Symond has accused brokers against further education of being 'selfish' and 'lazy', as the group laid claim to being the most highly qualified large mortgage brokerage in the country
  • John Robbo | 30 Jul 2012, 09:43 AM Agree 0
    I have been in this industry for over 25 years. Why the hell should I have to go & re learn what I have been doing for the last 25+ years just to keep my competitors happy. How dare I be called lazy & selfish. He used to represent this industry. Now - he will side with the highest bidder. He is a disgrace!
  • PC | 30 Jul 2012, 09:53 AM Agree 0
    I suggest Mr Symond go and do his homework before making beatup statements like this....
  • Tom | 30 Jul 2012, 09:56 AM Agree 0
    A real slap in the face for brokers with decades of industry experience. Symond is obviously advertising and promoting Aussie. Experienced brokers who attend the Diploma workshops can easily answer any questions and even run the workshops themselves if they have a teaching background. Education is great but experience has much more practicality over education. If you think that experienced brokers that do not do the Diploma will become extincted then you are the one dumber than I thought.

    Symond you have just put yourself in the same category as MFAA. Out there for your own gain!
  • Roberta | 30 Jul 2012, 09:57 AM Agree 0
    Dear Aussie John, here's some free non financial advice. You're getting all excited about how good you and your bunch at Aussie really are. I thought, particularly in the early days, the 'brokers' you took on only needed a pulse to work with you lot, now you might want to explain why just about everybody is a X Aussie. Maybe only in your own mind you are that good. We, the real brokers just get on with customer care, not self interest and promotion.
  • Andrew Ward | 30 Jul 2012, 10:02 AM Agree 0
    I have been in the industry for over 30 years and with aussie almost 10 years. If you are not prepared to keep your qualifications up to date, the industry WILL leave you behind! There ARE benefits to improving your qualfications and skill levels!!
  • Tom | 30 Jul 2012, 10:09 AM Agree 0
    I can't stop laughing @ Roberta. Well said Mate.
  • Rick J | 30 Jul 2012, 10:14 AM Agree 0
    Good that they are qualified, do they have experience? no!! Just how many " Aussie " brokers have come and gone! in their 100's John, why do they leave? Aussie's turnover of brokers would have to be the worst in the industry, the most qualified in the Centre Link queue.
  • Tony O'Halloran | 30 Jul 2012, 10:16 AM Agree 0
    Total support for previous comments in dismay that such a prominent person should make a sweeping unfounded and unintelligent comment that smacks of arrogance. Why would you have to denigrate so many that have so much experience and offer so much without the need for additional paper. I too have 35 yrs in the industry and the last 10 as a Broker. hasn't stopped me from being successful, giving great customer focused service and professionalism and don't see why i need it !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • phil.gt3 | 30 Jul 2012, 10:16 AM Agree 0
    Funny, I love following an Aussie broker! When I am the second opinion, I never fail to win the business. BTW I am in the final stages of a RPL for the Diploma.
  • David | 30 Jul 2012, 10:17 AM Agree 0
    After 30 years of lending and not one customer complaint, I consider myself "qualified" without the diploma.
  • Ian Jervis | 30 Jul 2012, 10:17 AM Agree 0
    Aussie may have the highest number of Diploma'd brokers but they will always be the Jamaican bob sled team of broking.
  • Tony O'Halloran | 30 Jul 2012, 10:19 AM Agree 0
    After 35 yrs in the industry and last 10 as a successful broker, who gives professional and well experienced advice to clients, I am unable to see how a bit of paper will make a difference. being with MFAA hasn't made any either !!!!!! If I've seen 2,000 clients in last 10 yrs, maybe 1 or 2 have asked about MFAA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Richard | 30 Jul 2012, 10:32 AM Agree 0
    I have been in the banking and broking industry for 42 years, highly regarded by all my customers, never been threatened with legal action or shot at, so I must be doing something right. Although I attained my Diploma sometime back, this is not the be all and end all of being a successfull broker as my previous experience has taught me a lot more than the content of the diploma course. Integrity,product knowledge,getting on well with your BDM plus treating the client as you would want to be treated yourself should be some of the hallmarks of a successfull broker, not just initials after your name!!
  • Country Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 10:35 AM Agree 0
    For once I agree with John Symonds, note i am not a supporter of Aussie John or will I ever be an Aussie broker!if we are to be a professional and well thought of body we need this standard, I have OVER 35 years experienece in the finace industry and casnnot understand the opposition, I didi the iploma early when i knew it was coming, if you have prior experience , just get on and do it , or leave the MFAA and go elsewhere.
  • RealBroker | 30 Jul 2012, 10:41 AM Agree 0
    Professional brokers do not need to go and learn what we have been doing for 30 yrs, for shoe salesman do, he's no ones friend he's just feathering his own nest.
  • Perth Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 10:50 AM Agree 0
    He is really is only trying to push his Aussie Brand. I have been in this finance industry for 30+ years and because the MFAA and my aggregator said I had to do the Diploma I did it. However the day after I completed it and received my certificate I don't fell any difference what so ever. When we see the assessor and credit managers with the lenders doing these same qualifications and we see some common sense in assessments then I will agree that it is worthwhile.
  • Aussie Rip Off | 30 Jul 2012, 11:00 AM Agree 0
    It's not about the certificate or the qualification. It is about continuing education and that has always been his beef. All I hear is excuses from our profession about why continuing education is no good for us and we should be able to keep doing what we are doing the way we have always done it. Thats just rubbish. Develop or die as a business is the reality.
  • 10 year Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 11:05 AM Agree 0
    The Diploma would have been worthwhile IF very experienced Brokers actually learnt anything. The only winner is the training organisations , amd my pocket was the loser here.
  • Garry | 30 Jul 2012, 11:14 AM Agree 0
    Good on you John. Self promotions is always a good thing. The problem is that we know the Aussie brokers. Having a piece of paper doesnt mean you can do the job. Actual experience and longevity in the industry is the only factor that matters here. Any broker will look good in the eyes of the client after them meeting an Aussie broker. have done my Diploma course and I can telly, I didnt learn a thing from it. My experience as with all of the smart brokers who have written here comes from on the job learning.
    One more question - why are we listening to the MFAA when the industry is goverend by ASIC?
  • Country Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 11:18 AM Agree 0
    Robeta great comment , but we still needa diploma as a minimum, great to see he has shut up about degrees
  • David | 30 Jul 2012, 11:36 AM Agree 0
    You just have to ask an Aussie broker,"Why did you recommend that loan", and the answer in many cases will be "because my computer told me it was the best loan". What happens when your laptop breaks down? Having the Diploma is not going to change that, but knowledge & experience will, like most of the above writers are saying. At 50, I am getting to old for all the red tape which doesn't help my client get a better deal or experience.
  • SunnyCoastBroker | 30 Jul 2012, 11:42 AM Agree 0
    I wonder if, once an Aussie "broker" obtains a Diploma, they receive a better commission split? I somehow doubt it....
  • Andy | 30 Jul 2012, 11:43 AM Agree 0
    So does they think he can bring anyone in with a pulse and after completing a two week course to gain a Diploma (training must be questioned) that they have the knowledge and ability to assist anyone for anything other than completing an application form. How many of Aussie's new to industry brokers last more than 12mths ??
    The training organisations are the only real winners here.
    Agree woth phil.gt3. LOVE following an Aussie Broker.
  • Greg Marshall | 30 Jul 2012, 11:53 AM Agree 0
    Whilst not against a Diploma, as the accepted evidence of experience and training, I wonder if all the people calling for higher education in a pure "People Industry" have completed all the programs and PD workshops on an ongoing basis themselves?
    I completed the Diploma in 2006, just to clarify.
  • Jason | 30 Jul 2012, 11:53 AM Agree 0
    Aussie J is on the money!
    In any professional industry you need BOTH experience and ongoing education, not one or the other. Our industry should expect nothing less if you wish to be the very best for your clients.
  • Anon | 30 Jul 2012, 12:00 PM Agree 0
    Good to see some brokers will be qualified. As a recent first home buyer, I looked for some kind of qualification or association memmbership from my broker. I wouldn't get my car serviced by an unqualified mechanic or my hair cut by an unqualified hairdresser, so when we are talking hundred of thousands of dollars I need to borrow, I like to know my broker is qualified in some way.
  • Terry | 30 Jul 2012, 12:01 PM Agree 0
    Having previously worked under the Aussie tag for 5 years and seen some 60 brokers come and go in that time (thats 1 a month) it highlights that Aussie isn't that great a place to be. Yes you might have the picece of paper to say you are qualified but the gap between theory and practical experience is a quantum leap which you just cant buy with the poor comm rates aussie delivers. I think having a diploma is more dangerous than not having a diploma as is portrays them as being experienced and competent.
  • 10 year Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 12:10 PM Agree 0
    “Ongoing education”, is generally taken care of by Aggregators with countless PD Days etc, BDM visits etc, so I, and many brokers that I know found that the Diploma was nothing more than a Mickey-mouse certificate that just repeats all the information that any Broker worth their salt should already be proficient at.
    Ongoing education is only worthwhile IF it is actually educational, which the Diploma was not, for the majority.
    It will only be a matter of time until some genius (we can all guess who!)decides that our Diploma is no longer satisfactory and this education circus will just continue , and continue to insult our intelligence (Think Broker practicing certificates!!!!)
  • Chris C | 30 Jul 2012, 12:35 PM Agree 0
    With statements like these, seems unlike some others, Aussie brokers may be dont have their customer at its core centre and therefore actually require the diploma upgrade:
    "completing the Diploma taught him that his business revolved around the customer and not the transaction" ....... derrrr
    "I am now focussed on always approaching my business in a different and more productive manner, keeping the customer at the centre of it and focusing on growth.” ....... basic Mr Watson

  • PC | 30 Jul 2012, 01:53 PM Agree 0
    I Did the Diploma early last year and to be honest it has not made me feel any more wiser or intelligent. I still have not put the letters on the business card.
    However, at no cost, I am one year more experienced this year than last year and feel all the better and wiser for that. I cannot remember a client ever asking what qualifications I have or if I belong to a Professional body, if anything they are more interested in how long you have been doing the job, experience and on the job training is what counts the most!
  • Andy | 30 Jul 2012, 02:13 PM Agree 0
    Maybe they have realised he needs more out of his sales force than just data entry and selecting what comes up No.1
  • Michael | 30 Jul 2012, 02:58 PM Agree 0
    With more individuals in this magazines top 100 than any other broker nationally, Aussie John and his team must be doing something right. Lots of tall poppy action in this column as per usual.
  • Garry | 30 Jul 2012, 03:25 PM Agree 0
    Michael,Your tall poppy comments are out of line. The only brokers who enter these absurd competitions are the vain ones who like all who listen to think they are wonderful. These top 100 details are not based on reality as I know the better brokers dont go in for that crap. They are professional business people who have nothing to prove.
  • Garry | 30 Jul 2012, 06:17 PM Agree 0
    How many Aussie brokers can use a HP12C, I bet even Aussie John does not know know what it is..Major of the good Brokers out there are actual Bank Managers. How many of your franchisees have worked in a real Bank ?
  • Broker | 30 Jul 2012, 06:42 PM Agree 0
    Whilst relevant qualifications are necessary, I agree with others that I have never been asked by a customer what my professional qualifications are and I do not go spruiking them. Maybe Symonds is trying to convince himself that if his brokers have a degree then they are all industry experts.
    Take the volumes of Aussies brokers in the top 100 out of Aussies overall figures and divide that by the amount of brokers, some of them might need saving . . .
  • LOL Tall Poppies | 31 Jul 2012, 09:15 AM Agree 0
    Gosh - Michael is right - tall poppies ....justifying why you don't have a diploma, and why you don't need one. Garry. Really? you reckon no-one but Aussie enters awards...LOL LOL LOL...This industry has more awards than any industray I have ever heard of. If they have no value, why do we have so many different ones?Michael is right - tall poppies. I don't have my diploma yet, but am happy to get it if it gives our industry some integrity.
  • Tom | 31 Jul 2012, 10:02 AM Agree 0
    The only reason why Aussie brokers do well is their financial power to advertise and market themselves through TV commercials, ads on the side of public transport etc. Brokers running a small business do not have that financial power to get exposure like that.

    Before I became broker I went to an Aussie broker to get finance for my first home. Put it this way, I was telling her what she needed to do and I wasn't a broker. I ended up ditching Aussie as I was so frustrated as I was dealing and doing all the work with the bank direct anyway.
  • Coast Broker | 31 Jul 2012, 10:17 AM Agree 0
    Aussie John is only beating his chest to promote himself and Aussie Home Loans. I have also been in the industry for over 30 years which included assessing and approving loans with a lending delegation of $1,500,000 prior to commencing my own brokering business 7 years ago. My experience with Aussie Brokers was never good when it came to assessing their loan applications so maybe you need to look in your own Backyard first Aussie John. I am not against the Diploma requirements but what about the experience I have built up over 30 years. That you cannot get from completing a Diploma.
  • phil.gt3 | 31 Jul 2012, 10:44 AM Agree 0
    @Anon 30 Jul 2012 12:00 PM; may I quote you! "I wouldn't get my car serviced by an unqualified mechanic or my hair cut by an unqualified hairdresser"! Both industries you mention are full of incompetence and just because people hang a sign to say they carry qualifications does not mean they are competent or ethical! Give me a broker with 30 years in the industry with OJT in preference to some Johnny come lately with a piece of paper! Mind you I am not against higher qualification, it is just that no matter how many qualifications a person has, it does not necessarily guarantee competency or high ethical standards!
  • Loz | 31 Jul 2012, 11:28 AM Agree 0
    What a waste my time.

    Surely a skills exam could have been established and awared RPL....if the broker scored below a certain score then the diploma required. After 15 years in this industry I know how to write a frikken loan.....
  • Aussie Rip Off | 31 Jul 2012, 11:31 AM Agree 0
    Love the fact that we beat our own chests and talk about 30 years as this and 30 years as that. I had an AFG broker as my first broker and then and independant broker as my second and they were the most incompetent people that ever breathed. Its not just about competency, education or experience. It is about the package. John Symond gets it and no matter what we say about the man he has the runs on the board. The fact that Aussie gets more comments than everyone else on this website tells you that the tall poppy syndrome is well and alive in our industry. Somtimes we are our own worst enemies and when ASIC make the diploma the minimum education standard (and it will) then all the rubbish of competency and ethics (which is what any profession needs) will turn to being whinging about why are we being forced yadda yadda yadda. and again I quote "The best salespeople are the ones that can suspend belief long enough to learn something new". Not a lot of evidence of that on here.
  • Dan | 31 Jul 2012, 01:32 PM Agree 0
    If Aussie are the most highly qualified group of mortgage brokers in the country, we are in real trouble.
  • Andy | 31 Jul 2012, 01:45 PM Agree 0

    Agreed that paper qualifications mean little when you come out of training. Having gotten into the industry through the Aussie Academy I was overwhelmed at the different number of situations customers were in - no two situations were the same. Jack & Jill with $100,000 savings and jobs wanting to borrow $200,000 were not to be seen !! But EVERYONE has to start somewhere. What needs to be looked at closely is the support post induction to ensure new brokers continue to learn and survive the first 12 – 18 mths. Whilst the support and training we received from our credit coach and some very knowledgeable and supportive Brokers was invaluable and our skills and confidence increased, 7 out of a class of 11 left within 9 mths solely due to financial pressure. Think back to when you all joined the industry and how tough it was and you will realise that if the Aggregators want new to industry Brokers then they have to realise Sales Managers are only interested in $$$ settled and cross sales. After induction they really need to make available credit support, assistance with deal structuring and make sure BDM’s visit the new guys so loans submitted are correct and are approved for 12 – 18mths to ensure loans are not killed through inexperience. And 3yrs down the track I am still learning every week and value colleagues to bounce things off …
  • Anthony | 31 Jul 2012, 03:32 PM Agree 0
    I am one who has a diploma. I have 18 years in the industry. 9 years as a broker. The diploma taught me little i did not already know, but it did proove i did know my job to someone. Generallyspeaking all the qualifications and courses pushed on us are designed at weeding out those that no one wants in their industry, that give us a bad name. APrt time brokers and real dopes. @Andy and @phil.gt3 - Everyone loves to follow another broker in the door, because if the people get someone else out, the first person has not done their job properly and it is easy if you do it right. If they had done it right themselves, there will be no second person to follow. @ Garry - I do not know how to use a 12c, but if it is like a 10bII then i will be OK. I cannot see why people are against doing something about cleaning up our industry, instead of winging about why they are so go and do not need to do anything. @ Andy, AMP must be getting a lot of business if they write whoever comes in at #1 then, or suncorp fixed 3yrs.
  • A Broker | 01 Aug 2012, 09:31 AM Agree 0
    Another Diploma-qualified broker here. Whilst it didn't teach me anything new (or relevant), I guess it's nice to have some sort of formal written acknowledgement that I have spent 15 years in the industry thus far. I'm still annoyed at the MFAA for rewarding those that were too slack to get their diplomas on time by giving them extensions and grants, but I guess those of us that do the right thing get screwed (as per usual).
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