Full Transcript is Below:
– Welcome into our “Top Producer Series” for the month of April, 2022. I’m NFM TV’s Greg Sher. Our top producer this month is a dear friend of mine. He’s JC Jimenez. He’s a Branch Manager out of the Vienna, Virginia area. He’s been with us since 2013. JC, great to be with you. Thanks for being our top producer for the month of April.
– Great to be with you also, Greg.
– You’re one of the most intelligent, well-read people I know on this earth. You’re certainly very astute when it comes to politics and having opinions. Maybe we’ll get into that, maybe we won’t, but let’s get into the nuts and bolts of your branch first. Your branch did over 300 million in volume in 2021. What a year!
– [JC] An excellent year, our best year by far.
– Let’s talk about the construction of your branch. Talk about your office and how it’s built, how it’s made up.
– We’ve been together, most of us, for the last 25 years, and we’ve been the happiest at NFM, because we’ve been here since 2013. That’s where we found a real home in which we have been able to grow and expand.
– I think it’s safe to say your lane is the Hispanic community, serving the underserved, and you guys have really taken great pride in making an impact in the community. Talk to us about that.
– We do about 65% of the business with first-time home buyers from Hispanic descent. We feel that we have an edge there. Not only are we part of the community but we know the idiosyncrasy. We know how they react, what the best way to get to them, and that has helped us out tremendously.
– Well, I know you’re very humble, and you don’t wanna take credit for it, but I know in getting to know you as well as I do that you lead with love, and that’s at the center of all the things you do. How has that approach enabled you to be such a tight-knit family?
– We have a lot of empathy. We watch out for each other. This is like a big family, but at the same time we count the beans. And what I mean by that is that we’re very committed, focused. We’re very responsible to what we take charge of and that way we maintain not only all of us in check, but we work in a very happy, safe environment.
– So when you joined NFM in 2013, I mentioned it was a crucial time for this company, because NFM was primarily doing refinance business, and we needed to make the shift to purchase and in came Jane Floyd, who we give a lot of credit to, and also in came JC Jimenez and your stable business and your purchase business, and you really helped put NFM on the map from a purchase perspective, and so, I just wanna acknowledge that, that you were really a pioneer at NFM. You helped pave the way for so many others who followed.
– It was a good transition, because we’ve really been primarily a purchase business. Refinance has always been a very small portion of what we do, and since we started, it’s been pretty much a constant since we joined NFM.
– You are a native of the great land of Columbia. You came here to the United States early on as an exchange student. You were here in high school for a couple of years and later went on to Michigan State, graduated from there, but then you went back to your country, and it wasn’t until you were 38, that you came back to the United States to try and make a home for yourself with your wife, Lena, and your three beautiful daughters. And you’ve got quite a story to tell about how you got into the mortgage business. Please share it with us.
– My first job was at JC Penney’s, $6 an hour as a draw. Two weeks after I started there, when I came in 1996, somebody came up to the counter and said, “I detect a slight accent. Where are you originally from?” And I told them, “My native language is Spanish.” And she said, “My husband is looking for somebody “that can speak Spanish.” So that’s how I went into the interview, and it was a mortgage company, and it was a small shop, eight people working there. That’s how it all started, and from there on, I started working in mortgages, and I have not stopped since.
– I know, but you said you started with eight people there. You ascended up the ranks to Vice President. You were the next in command to the owner by the time it was all said and done, and you grew the company with the owner to 550 people
– 550 people in 44 states. We were just a broker. We did about two billion per year, and it was a fantastic ride. Big refi boom in the early two thousands, and then the growth of the Hispanic community on the market until 2008, when things really turned south, and that’s when the company closed, and I started my own company.
– What has the experience been like at NFM?
– I met the owners and all the people at the headquarters. I found out that they were really, really interested in our success and that really made the deal for us important, because I said, “Okay, we’ll count. “They are interested in us, they’re very close, “and they’re very much solution oriented.” So I was happy, and that was my main driving force to join NFM.
– I mentioned that you are very politically astute. What is it about politics that makes it such a passion of yours?
– My admiration for this country and what it represents, as a leader of the world. It’s the best democracy that we can think of, inclusive with good hard work and real opportunity has made me admire this system more and more, and that’s why I’m so interested in politics, yes.
– You’re truly proof that there is such a thing as the American dream, wouldn’t you say?
– Yes, I have experienced what the American dream means, yes.
– Tell us about your family and how much they mean to you. I know that there’s a lot of sacrifice when you’re in this business and especially when you’re a leader.
– Three daughters, four grandkids, yeah, close family. That’s all we have, we have each other as a family, so it’s really important.
– How much longer do you think you’ll be in this game?
– I’m not sure that I have a retirement plan for the next five or six years. I’m happy doing what I do. My wife claims that I live here, and I visit her once in a while. As long as I can maintain relevance in my contribution, I’d hope to be around, yes.
– But I know you have a succession plan as a lot of great leaders do. You have some people there with you that you trust immensely, and I know you hope one day to pass the baton.
– Oh, absolutely, and that is a big part of the reason why they have remained here, because what we’ve built together it’s gonna eventually pass onto them. So yes, we do have a succession. Mauricio and Alejandro will eventually take over, and we’re so happy to transfer that over when that happens.
– Now, I’m so happy I know you and honored to call you my friend. Love you, JC Jimenez so dearly.
– Thank you so much, Greg, for the interview, and, yes, the feeling is totally mutual.
– All right, well keep up the great work. That’s JC Jimenez, our Branch Manager from Vienna, Virginia. He is our top producer for the month of April, 2022. It looks like he’s ready to get back to work, so I’m gonna say so long right now, because he’s clicking away. We’ll see you next time.