Happy Birthday to us! This month, the Young Mortgage Professionals Association is celebrating our first birthday. We began as an aspirational concept, grew to a series of talks between just a couple of people, developed into think tanks of five people, then meetings of twenty people, and we are maturing into an association with hundreds of members. We have come a long way, and we’ve only just begun!
With the nurturing and guidance of Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers, this Millennial-centric association is on a mission. Yes we are young, and no doubt we are focused on youth, but we are diverse and so we have members, affiliates and strategic partners of all ages. That being said, our talks and meetings are with people of all ages and different phases of their careers. My talks with millennials who are somewhat new to the industry or who are enjoying relatively new success in their mortgage-related careers are the most interesting and exciting. Fresh ideas come from fresh minds, right? But it’s my connections with Boomers that truly inspires me. These are the leaders in our field, the experts in our industry, and the first ones who noticed that they’ll soon be retiring but have no successors. They’ve been successful and had amazing careers, and they’re worried that they’ll leave the business they’ve come to know and love, uncared for.
A few years ago, as we started to recover from the financial meltdown, I noticed the topic of our aging industry seemed to be all-the-buzz. Conferences, news and chatter about Millennials and their lack of interest in our business was the newest social problem being discussed at our industry conferences. From a pure age and statistical perspective, I agreed that our aging industry is a problem. However, I wasn’t so sure that Millennials didn’t want to join our business. Before I joined Plaza Home Mortgage in 2005, I was new to the mortgage industry myself. Different generation and pre-recession, yes, so maybe I was wrong, but I remember thinking: what if we just promoted ourselves more? What if we marketed ourselves better? What if we provide more comprehensive training and education to attract young professionals who have no experience in the industry? Those of us in the business know first hand the opportunity that exists, so what if we just need to increase awareness and communication?
And now we are answering these questions by bringing you this Association of Young Mortgage Professionals. This week we will head to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Annual Conference in Boston for a YMPA Board planning meeting where we will discuss our next growth phase including our in-demand and dynamic local chapter growth plan. We are coming to a city near you!
In closing, I just want to tell you how grateful we are for the interest and the following we’ve received so far. Thank you to our members who have partnered with us in this mutual, proactive effort to refuel the mortgage industry.