Brokerage assembles expert mentoring team

by Miklos Bolza18 Aug 2017
South Australian brokerage Nieuvision has combined in-house education and industry mentoring to help its new-to-industry brokers survive during the first year on the job.

The firm has packaged its own knowledge which comes from an educational and finance background and interwoven this with practical experience in aspects such as sales, lead generation and networking, CEO Rick Nieuwenhoven told Australian Broker.

Industry mentors include Shaun Mahoney from email marketing specialist ULetters, Benjamin Simkin from lead generation consultancy BusinessNET, Andrew Phillips from sales training firm FocalPoint, and international sales expert Jack Daly.

“What we’re doing is compiling all the experts in their industries with our own knowledge and providing a package to help our brokers get up and running.”

Nieuwenhoven also helps mentor newcomer brokers through his own experience as director on the board of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA).

“Being closely tied in with the FBAA, I’ve been able to meet a lot of mortgage brokers over my time. I’ve seen issues with mortgage brokers – they’ve articulated them to me,” he said.

“The FBAA and the MFAA have done a lot of research. The biggest issue in the industry is new brokers and how they drop off quickly. If my business can provide some additional support mechanisms to brokers wanting to come into the market and leverage off of our experience, the industry will be better for it.”

Nieuvision’s current team includes three mortgage brokers as well as Nieuwenhoven himself. All have benefited from the firm’s training and mentoring programs.

“The system’s been good. Nick and Andy are going great guns and Steve’s building nicely here. I myself was writing great volumes until I took over a more managerial role in the business as CEO. It’s a good fundamental base system.”

For a lot of brokers entering the industry, the step was the first on a completely new career path, Nieuwenhoven said.

“People don’t necessarily have the business skills, they don’t understand the tax basics of handling your own tax, or they don’t have the fundamental sales skills of working B2B or B2C. It takes a fair bit of learning.”

The first 12 months in the industry are ‘make or break’ for new brokers as they struggle to understand exactly how the industry works, the processes involved, networking, etc, he said.

“If we can fast-track that, it makes it a lot more achievable for people to hit targets a lot earlier and make some revenue. They won’t be under financial duress in that first 12 month period.”

While training is all done in a traditional manner, the firm has plans for an integrated system encompassing a range of coaching and mentoring benefits to be accessed anywhere at any time.

One flaw in a lot of broker training programs is a lack of emphasis on the business component of being a mortgage broker, Nieuwenhoven said.

“The brokers learn how to do an application and the compliance aspects. These are fundamentally important and need to be taught but then the rest is left up to chance.

“If you’ve never been in the industry before, it makes it very difficult to understand the pathways and how to go about finding work. Do you start off targeting businesses or individuals? What’s your niche? What’s your point of difference?”

Building a coaching program to help brokers reach success in the industry was a way to give back to brokers and the industry, he said.

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