MReport September 2019

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 23 of 67

22 | TH E M R EP O RT FEATURE 06 Look people in the eye I t might amaze some leaders to know that when they pass people in the halls or in the break- room or in the elevator, that it mat- ters to team members that you take the time to look them in the eye and say hello. Often that can make a huge difference in someone's day. People need to know they matter, and it's important to take the time to see and acknowledge them. 07 Evaluate the internal promotions process T o elevate your inclusion game, take a look at the way internal promotions are managed. Here are a few guiding principles to consider when it's time to fill an internal job on your team: • I want to fill this job internally. • I want to find the best candidate. • I know some people who might be interested, but I'm also open to the fact that there could be someone out there that's a per- fect fit that I haven't yet met. • I'm committed to a list of final- ists who are diverse in nature. • I will engage a panel of inter- viewers to ensure that we com- pensate for anyone's particular biases. • I know it's easier to hire some- one, but I'm not interested in easy. I want to find the best can- didate, and I will put in the work it takes to make that happen. • I recognize that "hiring the best" and "hiring a diverse candidate" are not mutually exclusive—I can find both. 08 Build an inclusion index M ost companies have a quar- terly-pulse survey of employ- ees or at least an annual employee survey. To measure inclusion, add a question to the survey that can become your Inclusion or Belonging Index. It's a simple question: "I feel like I belong at (company name)." Once your benchmark is estab- lished, you can measure the success of your programs and see the continual improvement as a result of your efforts. 09 Create an inclusive application process for special programs and opportunities C ompanies often have pro- grams for high potential employees. Those may include professional coaching, external mentoring programs, and college- level certifications, among others. If you're fortunate enough to work at a company that offers these pro- grams, I would encourage you to set parameters for the candidates and then encourage employees to apply for these programs. This could help eliminate any uninten- tional continuous recognition for the same people and ensure that great talent isn't left behind. For example, at Mr. Cooper, we had the opportunity to send five of our Hispanic team members to a Rising Latino leadership program at a local university. Interested team members applied, and once we collected all the applications, we removed their names to help the selection committee review each candidate more objectively. By asking each applicant to write a paragraph on why they wanted to participate in the program, we were able to recognize who really had a passion and a hunger for a chance to grow in this way without having any preconceived notions. 10 Diversify your recogni- tion programs I n a quest to have high perform- ing teams, it can be easy to focus only on our top produc- ers. It's important to know that this tendency may leave other hard workers feeling demoral- ized and even left out. To offset this, consider creating an award for "The Best Team Player" that is voted on by team members, or think about an award for "The Most Improved" team member to recognize someone who is work- ing hard, but doesn't necessarily ask to be in the spotlight. From a customer perspective, something like a "Customer Warrior" award can recognize a team member who goes above and beyond for their customers every day. It never hurts to take a fresh look at how you are recognizing people and making sure others feel included in that process. Lastly, while having a team ded- icated to Diversity and Inclusion is necessary to run the programs for the organization, D&I should really be thought of and encour- aged as a part of everyone's job. D&I should be interwoven with who we hire, where we recruit, how we train, how we promote, and how we coach. Simply put, it is the "basic" work that we do. By having a team that consistently feels included, you'll create an en- vironment with high performing, happy team members, and that's a win for everyone. DANA DILLARD has spent over 25 years in mortgage, serving in different capacities across the industry. As Mr. Cooper's EVP of Corporate and Social Responsibility, Dillard oversees industry and government relations, nonprofit engagement, community outreach, and Mr. Cooper's Office of Diversity & Inclusion. Before joining Mr. Cooper, Dillard worked at GMAC RESCAP, where she managed the REO, Liquidations, and Community Outreach teams during the peak of the housing crisis. She has held other senior leadership positions at EMC Mortgage, Bank of America Mortgage, and Lomas Mortgage. Consider giving people on the team a chance to step up. You'll likely be surprised by the efforts of some members of your team if given a chance.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of TheMReport - MReport September 2019