Hey everybody, this is Bill Soroka, founder of NotaryCoach.com and the Sign and Thrive Course and Community.
You know, when I first started out as a mobile notary and loan signing agent, I really had no clue what I was doing.
I had no formal training.
I had no idea that the national notary association existed.
I didn't know there were signing companies. And back then there really wasn't a whole lot of training options anyway....
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But even as I got started in this business, I really had one foot out the door already. I was a passionate serial entrepreneur, and I was trying to manage five or six different little ventures, startups at the time - none of which were making money. So when I got the opportunity to make 150 bucks an hour as a loan signing agent, obviously I jumped on it.
You know, I didn't have a college degree. I didn't think anybody would pay this kind of money for this. So when I got in, I treated this business like an ATM machine. I was in it for all the wrong reasons. You probably heard me talk about this before. If you're in this for the money, you're in it for the wrong reasons and people can kind of smell that on you.
So for me, you know, I was in it for the wrong reason. I made tons of mistakes and I disrespected a lot of relationships along the way. But I was fortunate enough to have my entire world collapse around me. All those other little ventures just petered away. It just was not sustainable to run businesses in that way, I was just pulled in too many different directions.
So I had some time to adjust course and really focus on this business, and bring my a game to my work, my daily work - in systemizing my approach here, but also in cultivating authentic relationships and really kind of reinventing myself within this business. Still Even with that course adjustment, as many of you can probably relate, things aren't always rainbows and unicorns in this business. Even when you're committed and you're doing the right thing. I've lost many, many, many clients throughout the years for a variety of different reasons. But I have three major stories that stand out and I want to share those with you as well as the lessons that I learned in them.
First when I started out, I was absolutely clueless about bookkeeping. And I had this archaic manual system for invoicing. I mean it was literally like create it in word document, print it out, email it, attach it to an email and send it. And I had file folders for pending, paid - I mean it was just a cluster and that led me to fall behind in sending invoices or marking them as paid. So I had this one very high performing client that just got sick of having to ask me for invoices repeatedly because she couldn't close out her files or even cut me a check until I had sent the invoice. And it just didn't jive with her, obviously. And she fired me and she was super angry about it and I was devastated, of course. I'm just out there hustling, doing my thing and I just didn't prioritize correctly. And then I got really upset at myself too because that client was worth about $60,000 a year. I mean, she was a high performing escrow officer that was hustling and she wanted to help me, but I didn't let her help me.
So the lesson is "don't make people beg you to pay you". These days you have it a lot easier than I did back then. You have custom notary accounting software like a Notary Assist and Notary Gadget that will make your life so much easier in an instant. You don't have to let your bookkeeping build up. It can just be done right away.
The second client I want to share with you is, one year as things are really starting to get momentum, I really treated myself to a birthday trip like I had never taken before. And I went to Hawaii, to the Island of Hawaii was absolutely beautiful. But when I came back home, I came back to find that one of my dearest friends and a escrow manager client had been abruptly terminated due to due to some pretty shady backstabbing office politics. And then because I was so close to my friend and the client, the lady that had worked so hard to oust her from her position fired me. This totally, totally wiped me out.
Now, the lesson is that even when you're committed and you do things right, "there are some things that are just completely out of your control." You gotta take it with grace and you've got to trust that the Universe or God, whatever it is that you believe in, it's just making way for something better.
The third thing I want to tell you about is I fired an entire title office once because their files were so unorganized and their attitudes towards each other (super backstabbing, catty to themselves and to their clients) made my stomach turn. Every time I would see them on the caller ID, my stomach would just flip. And I knew I had to make a choice that I either had to choose peace of mind or I had to choose the revenue and that was worth about 70 to a 100 thousand dollars per year. But I had to choose peace of mind because that was a priority for me. And the stress that they were bringing in was just affecting my desire to even be in this business anymore.
So the lesson there is know your priorities and know yourself worth. You don't have to put up with poor attitudes in the lack of organization or people yelling at each other or at you. Still, there is a financial reality to that too. Cause that was a lot of money to walk away from. So I did, I had the trust that everything was going to work out and it actually did in this case. That exact same week that I fired that office I got a phone call from the vice president of another title company who had picked up my business card at a networking meeting like two years before, and brought me in and gave me like two or three escrow offices that tripled the revenue that I had just walked away from there.
So throughout your career, guys, you're, you're going to make mistakes. Some people won't like you, you'll get fired. You're going to fire other people. It's going to suck.
But embrace the suck without struggle. There's no progress and you're going to come out the other side of this stronger and better than you ever were before.
There is no "black list" for notaries. There's no hotline where escrow officers and signing company owners are getting on and talking about the little mistakes that you made. They're not on there bitching and complaining. They're not putting you on the list eliminating your business. I used to stress out about that stuff too. It just doesn't exist.
Just pick yourself up and keep going. This work matters. You do make a difference. This business, this lifestyle can change your life forever and it's worth it.
Thanks a lot for listening, guys. I'll see you this week. Hope you have a great end of month.
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