Jodi Spreadbury | The Mortgage Broker
Often it’s the quieter ones who surprise you. Pre-pandemic Jodi shunned the attention-grabbing world of social media and PR. But, as with many of the BLD Diamonds, the last 12 months have acted as a catalyst to push her out of her comfort zone. Inundated with customer questions, she has become something of a go-to-guru.
Having provided an ad-hoc but dedicated Q&A clinic during the pandemic, Jodi has now launched her own Facebook page providing financial insight, hints and tips, videos of the week and even a podcast. “The main thing I know how to do is give advice and help those who need guidance in these difficult times. My main aim throughout this pandemic is to focus on what I do best and give back to those who need it most,” she says.
This is no small thing in a period when each and every one of us has had extra on our plate to deal with before thoughts turn to others. For Jodi, though, help extends beyond the clients who pay her own mortgage, to any family and friends who need guidance on anything to do with their financial wellbeing. “Jodi is an amazing role model for women coming into our industry and a future industry leader,” says Maria Harris at Digital Cat Consultancy.
Like all the best people, Jodi has worked her way up from the shop floor; returning from travelling 16 years ago she answered an ad in the local paper for The Mortgage Broker – “I just thought it would have good career prospects!” – beginning as a PA, moving into admin, compliance, before full fledged advice as a senior mortgage and protection adviser covering all forms of buying, remortgage and specialist advice.
Knowing how to take the rough with the smooth is the secret to longevity in any industry, but especially property: “My timing was awful as it was of course a recession, so combining that with being a young woman in a predominantly male industry I had to quickly grow in confidence and step up my game – especially when it came to speaking publicly,” Jodi recalls.
These days, however, along with the variety and rising to the challenge of ever-changing situations, speaking to people is her favourite part of the job. Because by talking to people she gets to know more about them than their money, and seeing clients as something other than a wallet is how you actually have an effect on their lives. Otherwise it’s just lending and land: “Being able to help people achieve their goals and dreams makes my job really satisfying. I make it my mission to find solutions,” says Jodi.
Despite being busy enough giving free advice, Jodi also found time this year to reinstate her protection license – “I think this year has shown us that you never know what is around the corner!” – and emerge as a finalist in the British Specialist Lending Awards for Best Adviser for Complex Credit. And that is before the daily GIFs, messages and virtual coffee breaks to help with knowledge and morale among colleagues.
“I like to send pizzas to support team members, to cheer them up after a manic month,” she says, no doubt creating envy in mortgage firms with less generous advisers. She made sure to redress the balance though, coordinating a running challenge to ensure the team kept fit in the height of lockdown. “I try to keep fit where possible, managing my first 10km run in the first lockdown,” says Jodi, before explaining why: “I have an obsession with cheesecake – I’ve rated my absolute favourite cheesecakes I have had around the world – I can’t be the only person who works out just so they can eat more cheesecake?” Makes perfect sense to us.