How long have you known the applicant and in what context? Please comment upon the frequency and nature of your interactions with the applicant.
I know ABC since the time I joined DEF Inc. in March 2007. We have worked together as loan officers until we both started managing a team. We have been regularly interacting ever since.
What are the applicant’s three principal strengths? Please provide an example of each.
ABC’s principal strengths include a great ability to lead, team skills and strong business judgment.
ABC has the remarkable ability to create and inspire vision – When he talks to people about the future, he makes their eyes light up. Whenever a team member approaches him with any help or clarification he ensures that the core idea is made clear – instead of “spoon-feeding” he cross-questions to make sure the other person can handle it independently the next time.
I never found him to be intimidated by responsibility – he revels in the joy of accomplishment and leads from the front. In June this year, when his team was loosing morale due to an overall slowdown in the market, he went ahead and closed two major deals within 5 days. The breakthrough brought back life into the team and a sense of motivation that “It’s Possible. We just have to try harder and smarter”.
He instills confidence in peers and the team alike. He has helped many colleagues including me by coaching us towards crossing mental barriers. For instance, in my early days at DEF Inc., I never used to close revenues of more than 1.5% of the loan amount. ABC, however, was confident or rather adamant that could cross that threshold. He coached me on different scenarios where I could close deeper revenue percentages. He brought home that fact that our fees and commissions were justified because we did provide valuable service to our clients. And I have never doubted our services ever since. I always remember and thank ABC on all deals where I hit more than 3%. He is among the rare breed of exceptional salesmen who focus on the customer’s needs and not just the gimmicks!
ABC goes at great lengths to study his product and the market. It’s not just the salesmanship that works in his case – he knows exactly what will suit the customer best and his account profits! Many of my colleagues look up to him as a live encyclopedia of mortgage origination. I remember my early days in company when I was struggling to close the first set of sales leads. He asked me about my numbers and I referred to a signed loan application form which had not been approved internally. ABC volunteered to help me sort out the complications and did figure an acceptable way out. Within 15 minutes, I called the borrower to provide the loan for his dream house..
In which three areas can the applicant improve? How has the applicant worked to address these areas?
I can recollect memories from the early days at DEF Inc. where ABC came across as a very driven person with a certain sense of urgency in getting things done. Over the last year and a half, the drive still remains uncompromised. However, he has blended his passion with patience to become an even more balanced person. This powerful combination of being patiently aggressive will continue to work wonders for him and the organization that employs him.
ABC’s earlier background had been in customer services. In a rapidly changing and pressure driven sales environment at DEF, Inc., he would find it somewhat difficult to prioritize amongst the various tasks in hand. While he handled the situations effectively, I brought in some finer points on documenting and prioritizing activities. Over the next few projects, I was impressed with his methodical approach and efficient management. He lives by the planner and not one activity/project misses his attention.
How does the applicant respond to constructive criticism?
I find him to be very open to constructive criticism.
Please give examples in the space below to support any Top 5% or Bottom 20% ratings:
The answer to the second question reflects instances on Effectiveness of teamwork and Ability to inspire and motivate others. The concluding paragraph also touches the intellectual curiosity aspect.
Overall drive and motivation: ABC has many firsts to his credit at DEF Inc. – He has been the first among his peers to cross many crucial revenue benchmarks for which he has won many performance awards at our company. He was also the first to from his batch be promoted as Deputy Manager. ABC was handpicked to be a part of special 6-member team that was sent abroad to set up operations in Pennsylvania,United States.