Roz Cawood | Masthaven Bank
Chasing sales targets is the closest thing to the punishment of Sisyphus in modern times. Pushing that boulder up the hill day after day only to find at the end of every quarter the hill has got steeper as new targets are set. It takes a robust sort to grind it out. Roz Cawood, head of sales at Masthaven, fits the bill. Consistently the lender’s top performing sales person within the short term lending division, colleagues attribute her success to “hard work, determination and dedication”.
Roz took tenacity to heart early on in her career in part because she had to. The first bank she worked for turned her down for their management trainee scheme. “They said I’d be married in a few years and would then probably want to have kids,” she recalls, a stark reminder some employers think hiring a woman in a senior role will pose challenges – “thankfully times have changed, mostly”, she says.
The early knock back has done little to dent her ambition. Roz has been supporting Masthaven’s business development team for over five years, and as part of the sales leadership team is responsible for leading and developing Masthaven’s network of brokers, and helping to drive education around bridging finance. Each one of them big roles. Before that she was busy at significant names LendInvest and Legal & General.
Joshing is part and parcel of sales culture and some wags may suggest Masthaven, known for its very low rates, is an easy place to sell. But the lender says rates have had to fall to counter a huge rise in competition in bridging, where the choice for the bridging broker has never before been so rich, and securing deals as tough as ever. “Roz has covered the existing Masthaven relationships with her brokers with the utmost professionalism, but it is her ability to garner and maintain new relationships in an ultra tough and competitive region that sets her apart from others,” says colleague Richard Deacon.
People buy people, not products. And Roz is a people person. “Probably the number one thing for me is the people and their personalities – I think the industry attracts really interesting characters, and variety is the spice of life,” she says. Property is unlike other investments or purchases. To sell bricks and mortar is to share a vision with the buyer. “Many people spend their whole lives dreaming of their ideal home and it’s great to help make people’s dreams happen,” says Roz, “when a chain has fallen apart or a broker has a difficult case, it’s very satisfying when we can find a way to make it work”.
Going above and beyond is a key part of being a Diamond. In this most difficult of year’s, Roz has still found time to build up others through her involvement in the Women in Leadership programme. “I’m so proud of the programme, which involves digital workshops and online courses to help empower our women leaders and develop their skills,” she says. The programme has given her a renewed sense of self-belief barriers can be overcome, but also she is “passionate about helping others gain this realisation to reach their own potential”. All of this is in Roz’s own time – and yet she still finds the energy to be a shoulder to lean on day-to-day: “I’ve made it known that I’m ‘here to hear’,” she says, “and as someone who’s not office-based, I can help my colleagues with adapting to working from home”.