by Carol Anderson, Masterminding Panel Member
I’m looking for a career coach…. I have held several jobs (which doesn’t look so great to recruiters), but have been working in some aspect of title insurance and technology since 1998. I am a second generation licensed agent who is actively involved in her community. I am currently a 1099 contractor for CLoudstar Consulting, whose basic premise is to provide the technology tools to help title agents comply with regulatory standards.
I took a big risk jumping to a 1099 that I believed in and see and discuss a lot of big picture opportunities. However, the money is not following. I should be making more and could use advice on direction and perhaps implementing some of the ideas that I’ve come up with or joining a company with a base plus commission. Obviously finances are a concern.
Perhaps it’s looking at my sales model and setting up a daily sales plan. I got in on the groundfloor of this company because I want my industry to stay relevant and for people to not lose their jobs. How can I make the 60 hours of working and research and all of my high-level relationships translate into quick product sales?
You have a strong career in the title industry, and have the advantage of working both internally within large title companies, and externally, helping with a fresh perspective. As you have said, this is an industry in turmoil, which will continue for two reasons. First, the real estate market is still highly volatile without a clear end in sight, and second, the industry itself has a problem. Everything about title insurance is tied to the local market, but implementation of technology solutions requires a global and systematic approach. This creates a unique challenge for people working in the industry who are not comfortable with change.
The point is that you have a mission to help your industry stay relevant, which is admirable. The work that you do with business process improvement, though, may be relevant to other organizations and industries where they are struggling with transitioning from the old to the new. Are you limiting your revenue possibilities because you are focusing only on the title industry, and is there a way that you can expand your reach, and therefore your clients?
Working internally, or consulting externally are very different models with very different pay structures. In sales, or in external consulting obviously your risk/reward is greater. Internal work brings a better sense of stability, although nothing is completely stable these days.
Your movement since the demise of LandAmerica is somewhat explainable with the economic struggles of the real estate, mortgage and credit markets. The large title companies typically hire for the “book of business, for sales positions, but there may be non-sales opportunities up the road from you, as Fidelity has their corporate headquarters as well as their Lender Services business in Jacksonville.
In terms of remaining as a 1099, you are doing the right things – community involvement is critical, building relationships with everyone who may be involved in a real estate transaction. Having a couple great stories of how you have helped other title companies would be very helpful. And again, perhaps taking your work and mapping it outside the title industry to see how you might grow your client base could be worthwhile.
Supplemental Advice provided by Clive Russell, MasterMinding Panel Member:
As you step back and look at the “big picture,” consider that there may indeed be solutions which already exist for creating a new global computer-based eco system for title insurance – possibly piggy-backing on those in connected areas
“Mentoring Matters” is an exclusive ongoing series of Articles featuring select questions received from our readers via our @MENTORING Channel, with responses provided by our @Masterminds Panel. If you’d like your business or career challenge considered for publication, please visit our @Need A Mentor? Page today! BIZMENTORING 360°.