Residential Magazine

Stop the Uphill Battle

Originators should analyze their personality to maximize their company’s performance

By Carl White

There are many opportunities to learn when running a mortgage company. Here’s a simple analogy that could be a game changer for you: Make sure you’re skiing downhill and swimming down-stream. It doesn’t make sense to do the opposite since it’s too much work and you won’t get far even with a lot of effort.

In business, to operate at peak productivity, you want to put in small amounts of effort that achieve large results. One of the best investments a mortgage originator can make is to learn about yourself. And there’s an amazing tool you can use to learn about your communication do’s and don’ts, as well as your ideal job climate. It also can help you learn how to maximize your performance and have more fun in your work by identifying the things you find easy to do while avoiding the things that are more difficult.

This individualized tool is a personality assessment called DiSC (which stands for dominance, influence, steadiness and conscientiousness). This short quiz, which can be found at, spits out a lengthy report that can change how you’re doing business so you can ski downhill and swim downstream. 

Personality styles

There are three sections of the DiSC assessment and, generally speaking, these sections are about behaviors, values and attributes. Even completing only the first section about behaviors can be invaluable because it helps to categorize your probable responses in various situations. 

People who fall into the “D” category, for example, tend to prioritize decision speed and results. Making quick decisions can be both productive and challenging. If you were to find out you are someone who makes decisions quickly, you may find that you need to take a pause when making important choices so that you can avoid potentially negative consequences.

The “I” category relates to how much you interact and talk with people, or the degree of your introverted versus extroverted qualities. You might feel more comfortable hanging out at the back of the room, but that usually doesn’t work so well in the mortgage industry. If this assessment tells you that your “I” is high, one thing you can do is to interact with more people at the next conference you attend rather than working on other things, watching a movie or taking a walk — things that aren’t going to build your business. Knowing yourself better means you can make different choices that support your business growth. 

People in the “S” category are often known as “peacekeepers” who rely on patience, cooperation and stability to get the job done. But they also might lack self-confidence, compromise too often or be too passive. 

The “C” personality style ties into your degree of organization on a 100-point scale. If you find yourself with a low score in this category, you might already know you are tremendously disorganized. Although you haven’t learned something new about yourself, you can now view this as a basic personality trait and stop beating yourself up about it. You just need to start skiing downhill by surrounding yourself with people who are organized. 

Team impact

Your DiSC assessment can help you to identify actions to counterbalance your behaviors and tendencies — as well as the advantages and disadvantages that come with them. You can then capitalize on these to benefit your mortgage business. 

The assessment tends to reveal a lot about your own qualities and characteristics. It can help you to understand and do the things that come naturally. In other words, you should be able to focus on your actual strengths rather than your potential strengths, and that’s where the magic happens. 

It’s important to remember, however, that there are no “good” or “bad” results — only things to learn about yourself so that you can identify the best ways of running your mortgage business. It basically gives you a checklist of the vital things you should always be doing, the things you should avoid like the plague and the areas where you might need help to optimize your results. 

Once you have taken the DiSC assessment and understand your results, it becomes easier to hire the right people for your mortgage company as well. Ideally, once you take the assessment, you would then have all of your team members take it and apply what they’ve learned to company processes. This will help companywide communications, support an environment of maximum productivity, and ensure you have the right people doing the right things. 

You also can use it to screen applicants and see whether their qualities are a fit for your mortgage company. Taken altogether, it allows your team to focus on their individual strengths, which means you won’t waste time and resources on people who either don’t fit or aren’t doing the things to achieve peak productivity. The bottom line? The DiSC tool is a powerful way to keep swimming downstream. ●


  • Carl White

    Carl White is founder and CEO of Mortgage Marketing Animals, a successful mortgage marketing training program. White is also a branch manager at one of the top mortgage branches in America and the host of the No. 1 podcast for loan officers, Mortgage Marketing Animals teaches the strategies that originators in White’s own branch use today to close more loans in less time. Learn more by visiting

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