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Goal Setting and Sales Success

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As a mortgage professional, if you’re not regularly setting goals, you’re not going to get very far. Goal setting is a terrific way to accelerate success (I’ve written before about setting highly effective goals, here). Both loan officers and managers need goals to if they want to stay on track. In the case of loan officers, individual goals allow them to focus on professional growth and hold them accountable for their success. For managers, goals help them measure performance and give their team direction. Here are a few ideas for LOs and managers to keep in mind to reach their sales goals:

Have SMART Goals

Whatever your position, setting the right kind of goals is crucial. By following the SMART acronym, you can create sales goals that outline every one of your expectations and give yourself a clearer path to success. SMART represents goals that are:

S: Specific — they clearly spell out the terms and avoid leaving anything too ambiguous

M: Measurable — they have a mechanism that defines progress and success

A: Attainable — they are realistically achievable

R: Relevant — they’re in line with your larger vision

T: Time-bound — they have a timeframe to maintain your motivation


If we want to accomplish our sales goals in an efficient and productive manner, we need to prioritize a few goals that we can focus on at a time. Even if it’s one major goal, that can be helpful and allow us to use our time more efficiently. We should pare down our list of goals to focus our energy rather than spread it out too far. You may even find it useful to prioritize an easier goal that can be accomplished easily in order to build positive forward momentum toward other larger goals.

Write Them Down

Many professionals believe that having mental goals are enough, but when we keep our goals in thought form, we’re going to be less likely to see positive results. Alternatively, write your goals down. Managers may choose to display a list of team goals in a visible area as a tool to both remind and motivate their team. Both LOs and managers that have individual business goals should also write them down for their own benefit and keep the list in a place where they’ll see it daily. Visual tools like these are proven to deliver results because they promote accountability, clarity, and the drive to continue moving forward.

Check in and Reflect

Setting the right kind of goals is great, but checking in and reflecting with others on your progress is a fail-proof way to hold yourself more accountable. Managers should schedule frequent meetings to give and receive feedback with their team. This holds both the team and the manager accountable for the amount of progress made, and it allows them to identify any areas that may need more attention. Bottom line — reaching goals comes down to accountability and commitment. The better that managers can structure the work environment to encourage accountability, the more likely that everyone will be to meet their goals.

Adjust When Necessary

Goals don’t always stay the same after we’ve set them. They may need to be adjusted occasionally to accommodate newer sales trends and other factors. And sometimes we may not be entirely sure how to frame a goal until we’ve started working towards it. Your goal may have seemed attainable until you started digging into it. Give yourself the space to adjust your goals accordingly — it’s far more realistic than moving forward with goals that just don’t make sense.



If we set the right goals, we’ll have a considerably easier time meeting our expectations. Utilize the SMART method of goal setting to identify some clear goals, write them down and check in in with others, and be prepared to make adjustments. Then, you’ll have given yourself a leg up when it comes to finding the success you want to achieve.

If you’d like to talk more about setting sales goals, or if there’s something else I can be of assistance with, get in touch. I’m always happy to set aside some time to connect.

Also, if you’re considering a move, we have some terrific opportunities for loan officers, sales managers, and branch managers that I’d love to discuss with you.

Don Riggs

VP – Retail Market Leader

NMLS 132702



This is not an advertisement pursuant to 12 C.F.R. 1026.2(a)(2). This is informational, recruiting material intended for mortgage professionals only and is not for distribution to consumers or prospective applicants for residential mortgage loans. Cardinal Financial Company, Limited Partnership, NMLS ID 66247, is an Equal Housing Opportunity Lender. Corporate Address: 3701 Arco Corporate Drive, Suite 200, Charlotte, North Carolina 28273. Licensing information can be found at: