25 May Success and Growth at Orbis Mortgage Group
“A boss has the title, a leader has the people” – Simon Sinek
To some, Orbis Mortgage Group represents a professional team that strives for excellence, but to all the name Teddy Kyres represents a great leader. His humility comes first, as does his people, which is a big part of his success to date. During a conversation with Goss Magazine, Teddy emphasizes the importance of team building and his relationships with both his clients and his colleagues at Orbis. “I couldn’t have done it without my team”. He says proudly. Here we take a deep dive into what real success looks like in today’s article with Teddy Kyres of Orbis Mortgage Group.
Kyres holds a BA in Economics from McGill University and has completed the Mini- MBA Program at McGill as well. Prior to founding his business, he spent the better part of a decade as a mortgage specialist with BMO where he was a national leader in funded deals. Throughout his career he has funded over $1.5B in volume through more than 5,000 loans.
Through his many years of experience in different types of mortgage environments, Kyres has developed a comprehensive understanding of the mortgage industry, from the intricacies of big banks and financial institutions to those of private and alternative lenders for both residential and commercial clients. His breadth of experience in the industry ranges from client service and team management, to operational and regulatory matters.
Orbis Mortgage Group launched in 2018, and to date has grown to over 50 employees and brokers, including an underwriting team, and support staff.
In addition, his partnership with the Coalition of Independent Mortgage Brokers of Canada means that he is connected to the state of the industry nation-wide, with access to resources in every province. With the support of this expansive network, he launched Orbis with the intention of redefining the mortgage brokerage industry. Now, as one of the largest firms of its kind in Quebec, the team continues to strive towards this goal with immediate plans to expand further.
Did you always know you would go into the finance / real estate industry ?
Yes. This was always my area of interest both academically and professionally. In addition to Orbis I’m involved in a handful of other projects in the real estate industry, some on the development side and others in the property management space. Montreal is such a great city for real estate ventures, so the industry has always held my interest, dating back as far as I can recall.
Tell us about your path that led you to open ORBIS Group?
The plan was always to venture out independently and open a new brokerage, but like in any industry I had to learn critical skills and knowledge by first feeling out the landscape and working in established institutions. Doing so enabled me to grow my network and make a name for myself to some extent. The notion of eventually launching an independent brokerage always drove me. I wanted to build upon what I had learned during my years at the bank, and then do things a little differently in order to achieve better results both for clients and for the careers of our brokers.
What is the mission, core values, brand culture at Orbis ?
We’ve been intentionally different in how we operate from day one. The mortgage brokerage industry, especially on the independent side, can be somewhat isolationist with everyone in competition with each other and little room for cooperation, even within the same companies. At Orbis, we’ve worked hard to create a more family-oriented culture where cooperation and camaraderie are keys to success.
Where do you think the residential real estate market (in Quebec and surrounding areas) is headed? Are you seeing a shift in the way people are investing today?
I do feel extremely positive about the future of the market in Quebec, where the market has broken records month after month. Our current situation has led to people investing more in their properties, often deciding to upgrade for space, novelty, or to seek larger lots away from the city’s core.
What systems do you have in place for internal growth at the company?
We have several measures in place because we see great value in investing in our people. It’s so rewarding to see brokers advance their careers, building their networks and businesses while operating under the Orbis banner.
We firmly believe that if you invest properly in the right people, everyone will win in the end.
To date this model has brought us much success and we anticipate our growth will continue across Quebec moving forward.
How do you set goals within your team and achieve them?
I think that our culture is really well suited to making people feel motivated. We reward and celebrate each other’s hard work. I personally think having this kind of culture, where people are driven to push themselves to succeed and achieve on every level, is more important than individual goal setting. When you operate in a goal-oriented environment, you’re constantly striving to better yourself, and those around you, and that’s the mentality we work towards.
What is the difference between your firms and others?
Without giving away our secret sauce, I just think our culture is the biggest distinguishing factor. We hire strong people and invest in them properly. When you enable people to achieve and reward them appropriately for doing so, you can stand back and let them soar to a certain extent. The sky really is the limit in this business and our brokers know it.
Also, as an independent brokerage, and one of the only members of the Coalition of Independent Mortgage Brokers of Canada (CIMBC) in Quebec, our team has access to the widest range of lenders nation-wide. This includes leading A-lenders, alternative lenders, private lenders, and more. The result is that our brokers are able to serve the widest range of clients possible, and are experts at finding solutions no matter a client’s situation. We work with everyone from seasoned real estate investors with excellent track records, to more complex situations including self employed individuals and newcomers to Canada with little or no credit history.
How has your business improved by having more women taking leadership roles?
Every senior manager position at Orbis is held by a woman, so there’s no question that women play a pivotal role here in many different capacities. The women running our business relations, residential underwriting, recruiting and sales, compliance and administrative departments are all uniquely skilled in terms of their leadership abilities and their comprehensive expertise in their respective fields. In fact, our Director of Sales, Carmen Patraccone, was my mentor at BMO for a decade before I launched Orbis and asked her to join our team. Among the brokers, women play second fiddle to no one and consistently stand out for their deal volume and other key performance indicators. I have deep respect for the role each and every woman plays at Orbis and great appreciation for their invaluable contributions to the company’s growth and success thus far.
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