Axiom Mortgage Solutions has spent much of 2020 solidifying its reputation as “ the best of the West. ” Over the past year it has seen tremendous growth in both volume and number of agents. During this same period, it began a serious surge in the Ontario market. The addition of TCG Lending Centers (now Axiom Hamilton) was a huge win for Axiom. Synergy was found with this large group of agents and their team leader Carmen Costa (pictured above). Costa provides a key leadership role for Axiom in this newly expanded region.
Costa and Axiom managing partners Gord Appel (pictured below) and Gordon Ross (pictured below) sat down with MBN to explain their plan for continued and sustainable growth in 2021. They cite their corporate culture as a factor contributing to their success.
“Ours is an environment in which the agent can thrive,” says Appel. It’s a culture that has flourished in the face of a global pandemic and it’s a culture they believe will guide them to new heights this year and beyond.
“For us, it’s not about the numbers,” said Ross, when asked about Axiom’s growth targets in the face of rate volatility. “The rise in interest rates, the external landscape that we cannot control, these are only table issues. All brokers face these conditions, but what we have decided is that we are a people business that does nothing but mortgage loans. If you surround yourself with the best people, everyone will be more successful. “
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They illustrated how their unique approach to dealing with lenders can strengthen an agent’s position in this competitive market; and, perhaps more importantly, insisted that the focus should remain on the people within the brokerage. “We are an agent-centric brokerage firm,” said Appel.
The creation and motivation of this team has been at the heart of a growth approach that allowed Axiom to exceed $ 2.5 billion last year (a growth rate of approximately 260%). Ross and Appel attribute this growth to connectivity with the team, including motivational Monday messaging, regular check-ins, wellness initiatives (via Axiom Fit Club), and platforms that empower their 200 agents. across the country to support each other.
It’s clear Axiom executives select teams and agents based on personality and cultural fit rather than just production. If an agent can bring a $ 200 million book to the table, but represents cultural “cancer”, then Axiom is not the right fit for them. Their growth targets may be high; but they are thoughtful. They are meant to be sustainable, both financially and culturally.
It was this culture more than anything else that attracted Carmen Costa to Axiom. After investing thousands in her own brand at TCG, she knew that Gord Appel and Gord Ross were offering what she was looking for: “a brokerage with a heart”.
“These are the agents who sell for you,” said Costa. “They’re the ones who build your brokerage. To benefit these agents, you have to have this heart, you have to take care of them… I became a broker / owner because I was fed up with seeing companies that treated agents like a number. These guys from Axiom are doing something different.
For Costa, the motivational work put in place by Axiom’s management was a key selling point. A sales job can be a lonely place, she explained, especially during a pandemic. By emphasizing connection, the Axiom team created a culture where people were driven to perform because they were cared for.
With leaders like Costa by their side, the Axiom team aims to grow an additional 100 agents over the coming year – again emphasizing that growth is more about cultural fit than just counting. bodily.
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Supporting their brokers also means striving to protect relationships with lenders. It means expecting more from lenders and providing them with more in-depth service. Axiom managers view these relationships as partnerships.
“Both parties (lenders / brokers) must commit to fostering ongoing communication and respect; we cannot be afraid to have the difficult conversations when necessary, whether it is them with us, or us with them. This is how we grow, ”said Appel.
By listening carefully for weak spots and working to eliminate them, Axiom builds strong, fair and positive lender relationships, providing another source of support for their agents.
Ross believes their support offering to be complete. Through tools, technology, lender relationships, products, compensation and culture, Axiom strives to provide an ecosystem for agents in which they can thrive.
“We have eliminated the agent relationship defined by a ‘nickel and dime’ approach, where owners and sellers try to extract what they can from each other,” he said. “Our support and tools were further enhanced when we joined Centum in June 2020. They work to create an environment that fosters individual growth and happiness.
“At the end of the day, we take care of our brokers (agents) as if they were our clients,” said Gord Appel. “Market conditions aside, the relationships with lenders we have established allow us to be competitive in any landscape. The ground is level and we have an advantage. Now it is about supporting the people who will fight for us; and there’s never a better time to develop this team than now.