Firing on all Cylinders
Talk to anyone who’s been at Canada ICI long enough, and eventually you’ll come across the topic of performance — specifically, the culture of high performance that permeates every level of the company. “I don’t want to be part of an organization that’s competing with a colleague on the other side of the wall, and you don’t want to collaborate with them on deals. You’re viewed as a competitor,” says Kyle Edwards, as he thinks about his previous experiences in commercial brokerage before joining Canada ICI. “Here [at Canada ICI], I feel like it’s the opposite. Everyone is working together to help the next broker. High performance is wanting to challenge our colleagues, but in a good way and we’re encouraging each other to outperform our best selves.”
Over the years, that culture has continued to grow and develop, to the point where what may have been impressive just a few years ago is now a baseline expectation. “When I first started in brokerage, about seven years ago now, someone that was funding $100M in loans in a year was a top gun, and that was impressive,” Kyle recalls. “At Canada ICI, we have people who are funding $300-400M in loans in a year.
Driving that high performance is a combination of hiring the right people and bringing them into the fold of Canada ICI’s culture.
According to Kyle, this culture starts at the top. In his opinion, Dale Klein, Doug Milne and Brandon Kot do a tremendous job of practicing what they preach when it comes to ICI’s company culture. Kyle explains, “all the people running our offices are still the top producers in the company. They’re leading by example and are humble about it. They really want to see their team grow and succeed.”
Another important part of ICI’s high-performance culture is the ability to manage the ebbs and flows of the business. “If a transaction that you’ve been spending months on gets derailed, talk it over with a colleague for 30 minutes, then move on,” Kyle says. “Everyone’s supportive because each and every one of us understands that there’s not one person in the company who doesn’t lose a deal once in a while.”
It’s vital to remember that for every lost deal, there’s another opportunity for success right around the corner. As Kyle explains it,
there are certainly ups and downs for everyone. It’s not a straight line upwards. Generally though, everyone’s trending upward over the years.
Indeed, a crucial piece of Canada ICI’s culture of high performance is the ability to maintain your focus on all the deals to be made in the future.
Of course, it’s quite rare to succeed in the commercial mortgage industry if you don’t have a legitimate passion for the work. “We all love what we’re doing. We love making deals, and love helping our clients,” Kyle explains. “The beauty is that it’s not the same every day. You’ve always got five or ten deals you’re working on, and they’re all at different stages. You’re always excited about something when you come into the office.”