Page 1



Executive Agents of the Month

INSIDE FEATURES: Knighton & Fordonski

Kinecta Federal Credit Union

Anthony Ramirez

Keller Williams Realty

NEWPORT BEACH 3501 Jamboree | Suite 200 | Newport Beach, CA 92660

Build a partnership with a direct lender that offers exceptional service.

John J. Reed Branch Manager NMLS-869516

(949) 398-3655

Mark Martinez

Alan Cipolletti

Valerie Dawson




Sales Manager

(714) 863-8470

Karina Flint

Senior Mortgage Advisor NMLS-1736332

(949) 903-3370

Lynn Nelson

Senior Mortgage Advisor NMLS-653022

Senior Mortgage Advisor

(949) 394-1757

Therese Franklin

Senior Mortgage Advisor NMLS-1151840

(949) 394-4624

Patricia Redfern-Wright

Senior Mortgage Advisor NMLS-483924

(714) 412-8608

(714) 329-8620

Jim Thiel

Rick Torres



Senior Mortgage Advisor

(949) 521-0039

Senior Mortgage Advisor

(714) 864-8088

Jennifer Milliken Senior Mortgage Advisor NMLS-971471

(951) 743-4199

Jeffrey Scott

Senior Mortgage Advisor NMLS-255094

(949) 677-1001

Senior Mortgage Advisor

(858) 220-9103

We offer in-house agent marketing support providing the following services: POSTCARDS | FLYERS | VIDEO | PHOTOGRAPHY Š2018 Finance of America Mortgage LLC is licensed nationwide | | NMLS ID #1071 ( | 300 Welsh Road, Building 5, Horsham, PA 19044 | (800) 355-5626 | AZ Mortgage Banker License #0910184 | Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act | Georgia Residential Mortgage Licensee #15499 | Illinois Residential Mortgage Licensee | Kansas Licensed Mortgage Company | Licensed by the N.J. Department of Banking and Insurance | Licensed Mortgage Banker -- NYS Banking Department | Rhode Island Licensed Lender.


Jody & Lorie Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage



Inside Features

26 Shane Knighton & Joseph Fordonski

Kinecta Federal Credit Union


ExecutiveAgent Magazine

06 Anthony Ramirez

Keller Williams Realty

Orange County - October, 2018 Editorials





How Business Women Who Are Positive Thinkers Win -Roxanne Batson

Fred Arrias Executive Publisher PO Box 73384 San Clemente, CA 92673 Ph: (949) 297-8323 Fax: (949) 266-8757


Become A Specialist -Linda Brakeall

ADVERTISERS’ INDEX - NOC City of Hope....................................................34 Finance of America Mortgage..................2 & 35 iPhotography Studio...............................................23 Kinecta Federal Credit Union...............................13


How to Trample High Turnover and Turn More Profits -Carla Cross


The Termite Guy......................................................3 Ticor Title Company...................................................36 VAREP..............................................................................9

Photography: iPhotography Studio, Ian Wiant, Rob Paino Graphic Designer: Garon T. Arrias Editorial Manager: Trudy Van Writers: Ben Angel, John Boe, Haley Freeman, Jim Rohn, Walter Sanford, Dirk Zeller, Zig Ziglar Craig Harrison, Simma Lieberman, Chris Widener


The Genious of Teamwork -Patricia Fripp

© Copyright 2018 Executive Agent Magazine. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Although every precaution is taken to ensure accuracy of published materials, Executive Agent Magazine cannot be held responsible for opinions expressed or facts supplied by its authors.


Once In A Lifetime -Chris Widener

ExecutiveAgent Magazine






Written by Haley Freeman

Anthony B. Ramirez ccording to Realtor® Anthony B. Ramirez at Keller Williams Pacific Estates, he is selling more than houses — he is selling a lifestyle.

A SoCal native, Anthony earned his degree in business with an emphasis in real estate from California State

University, Long Beach. He began his career working with a major lending institution as an appraiser, before transitioning to mortgage lending, where he engaged in both sales and management. Anthony’s gregarious nature and desire to be out in the field meeting new people eventually drew him to real estate sales.

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Selling the SoCal Lifestyle With 20 years of experience across varying aspects of the industry, Anthony is a well-rounded professional with a deep knowledge of Southern California’s many unique markets and ways of life. “I try to sell a lifestyle, especially in the beach cities,” he says. “I was born and raised in Whittier, and I’ve lived in Chino Hills. Now I live in Huntington Beach Harbour, and I love it there. The reason I chose it was the lifestyle and the unique combination of great weather, entertainment, luxury homes and outdoor activities. Where else can you surf in the morning and snowboard in the afternoon?” Anthony adds value to his real estate representation by continuing to draw upon his appraisal and lending expertise to help clients understand local market values and prepare for loan qualification. “I can educate sellers about what their home is worth and why, and help them understand how an appraiser might discount the property for something like backing up to a freeway. When a buyer is looking at a property, I can give them an idea of what a lender will lend on, and whether a house would qualify as an FHA or VA-approved home.” A lifelong student of real estate, Anthony is wellequipped to advise clients from first-time buyers to savvy investors about lucrative buying opportunities. Before taking a listing or holding an open house, he does his research and becomes a neighborhood expert. “When someone comes into my open house, I make the extra effort to educate them on things like local schools and police statistics for the area. I strive to be the answer guy. If someone is thinking about buying or selling, I want to give them the information they need to help them make a sound decision. And if someone needs a referral for a contractor, insurance, or other professional, I am a resource for reliable professionals who I know will get the job done right.” While real estate has always been Anthony’s profession, he is a man of many talents. He is a martial artist in several disciplines and a four-time Ironman triathlon competitor. He says his athletic background makes him highly competitive and assertive in business, but he tempers those traits with a strong desire to do right by others. Anthony is also a professional actor, and his adventurous spirit and diverse interests make him relatable to all kinds of people. Because of his connection to the sports and entertainment industries, he is able to serve high-profile clients with understanding and discretion, and he is adapting

his real estate practice to better serve these professionals. “I just closed on a home for a high-profile individual. I understand how to navigate a transaction when someone has an Assistant, an Agent, a Financial Consultant and an Attorney involved in managing their lives.” After several years of working with a top-producing team, Anthony is now a solo agent at Keller Williams Pacific Estates, where he enjoys the support of his colleagues in a culture of continuous learning. “Keller Williams has the best educational resources in the industry, and our team leader structure is first-class. It’s such a motivating environment, and everyone here really cares about one another and pushes each other to be successful. It’s really inspiring to be part of it. Environment matters!” Keller Williams encourages everyone to find their “why,” and Anthony describes his this way: “My ‘why’ is to be positive and inspiring to others. I know I’ve done my best when a client closes escrow from a transaction with me feeling great. In real estate, I want to provide a positive experience and help people find the home that gives them the lifestyle that will make them happy for years to come.” Anthony B. Ramirez Keller Williams Pacific Estates 17785 Center Court Dr., Suite 120 Cerritos, California 90703 Tel: 714.292.5097 Email: Web: CalBRE #01876946

ExecutiveAgent Magazine




TO NOMINATE? Submit Nominations to: Tel: 949.297.8323






1,500 + FAMILIES

WHO WE ARE Established in 2011, the USA Homeownership Foundation, Inc. DBA Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals (VAREP), is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to increasing sustainable homeownership, financial-literacy education, VA loan awareness, and economic opportunity for the active-military and veteran communities.



UPCOMING LOCAL VAREP EVENT VAREP Orange County - Golf Tournament September 14, 2018 Tustin Ranch Golf Course 12442 Tustin Ranch Rd, Tustin, CA 92782


WHO CAN JOIN? Any individual regardless if you have served or not. VAREP and its members represent and work within all sectors of the real estate, housing and financial services industries... WE WANT YOU!

VAREP San Bernardino - Veterans Housing Summit Saturday · September 22, 2018 Check In 8:00AM Event 9:00AM - 2:00PM Ontario Chamber Of Commerce Education Training Room 3200 Inland Empire Blvd., Ste 130 Ontario, CA 91764 VAREP San Diego - Golf Tournament September 26, 2018 Riverwalk Golf Club 1150 Fashion Valley Road · San Diego CA 92108 View the full VAREP Events Calendar at: | w w w .VAR E P. n e t | 951-444-7363 VAREP IS A 501.C.3 NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION AND YOUR CONTRIBUTION IS TAX DEDUCTIBLE. USA HOMEOWNERSHIP DBA VETERANS ASSOCIATION OF REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS TAX ID: 45-2458485

The Genius of Teamwork


rue teamwork is the rarest, most exhilarating, and most productive human activity possible. Every business wants to harness this incredible energy, but achieving such a level of motivation and esprit is not always easy. A team is not just a group of individuals who work at the same location or have the same logo on their business card. A real team is made up of people who may be unequal in experience, talent, or education, but who are equal in their commitment to working together to achieve the goals and good of the organization, each other and their customers. If we are going to be successful, we can no longer look at our organizations as departments, divisions, or branch offices. We must look at the bigger picture and resolve to work together in ways we may never have done before. We may even need to cooperate with the competition. Think of all the mergers and acquisitions in the past few years. Your number one competitor today could be your partner tomorrow.


Futurist Bob Treadway CSP, from Littleton, Colorado often gives the Mensa IQ Test to participants in his seminars. He has found that many “average” people, when working as a team, test at “genius” level or higher. Participants contribute in different ways. Some brainstorm. Some work alone and then report back to the group. Treadway finds that a team “becomes a genius when everyone works together.” Treadway also noticed that when a team is working at optimal performance, it is hard to know who the leader is. In other words, the team runs the team. Such teamwork doesn’t happen by accident. It requires commitment and effort, a willingness to accept the uniqueness of others, and an appreciation of diversity. We build teams in our companies the same way we build relationships with our friends and coworkers. High-functioning teams establish us and our companies as reliable, internally and externally. We then project this image to our customers, vendors, competitors, and communities.

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

With downsizing and restructuring, many managers today are responsible for as many as 250 people. More than ever, these managers need to build responsible and committed team members if they want the best performance from them. But how do they go about it? A very dynamic, productive example was the team led by Mike Powell, when a senior scientist at Genentech. Because of its past successes, his ten-person team was given the most important assignments. I asked Mike how he managed to keep his people highly motivated in an environment with long hours and a great deal of frustration. “I keep them happy,” he said. Now, every manager wants to do this, so I pressed Mike for details. “Ten years ago,” he continued, “I told team members only what I thought each needed to know. Now I tell everyone everything. It may slow them down a bit while they are filtering through all the information, but they get the big picture. Then they can then decide what it is they need to know and do.” He added, “I also gave them lots of positive feedback via email and voice mail. One group at Genentech lost their leader, but they stayed incredibly productive. I left a

voice-mail message for one of them, saying ‘Everyone in the company is talking about how well you all are doing.’ They were really effective as a team and appreciated knowing it.” Building a real team gets real results, but it can’t be done with slogans and directives. Ed Stair, Senior Vice President at Gap talks about ‘Gap Heroes,’ everyone who uses innovation to find ideas to save money or improve productivity. Start by respecting each person’s individual contribution, showing appreciation, exciting them about their possibilities for achievement, and sharing with them that their group effort has the potential for real genius. Good luck! Patricia Fripp, CSP,CPAE is a professional speaker on Change, Teamwork, Customer Service, Promoting Business, and Communication Skills. She is the author of Get What You Want! And, a Past-President of the National Speakers Association. For information about Patricia’s Keynote presentations, please contact The Frog Pond Group at 800-704-FROG (3764) or email; http://www.frogpondgroup. com.

ExecutiveAgent Magazine



We know that you can choose to join any association. PWR goes beyond the basics of providing MLS access and Supra Key support – we provide our members with ONE-OF-A-KIND services that help them become better REALTORS®. FLEXIBLE WAYS TO PAY SOME OF THE LOWEST DUES AROUND Monthly & quarterly installments plans through ezPay (PWR’s online bill pay)



Training at the convenience of your Broker’s office


RED (Rapid Ethics Delivery) for fast & easy conflict resolution (exclusively at PWR)

The largest REALTOR® store in the area for all your real estate needs



The area’s only Triple Crown & President’s Cup Award Recipient presented by the National Association of REALTORS®


Learn to be more productive, professional, & profitable! Classes at our Anaheim & Long Beach locations


The only association in the area with its own Mobile App


Direct access to REALTOR® Tools (Matrix MLS, RPR, & PWReports)


Proceeds from the Golf and Wine Tasting events fund our PWR Charity Foundation grants for First Time Homebuyers & Military Personnel (YOUR clients!)


PWR is the only association with an in-house Call Center to provide prompt, individualized service

PACIFIC WEST ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® Serving Orange County & Los Angeles County

ORANGE COUNTY: 1601 East Orangewood Avenue, Anaheim LA COUNTY: 5000 East Spring St., Suite #110, Long Beach (714) 245-5500 • WWW.PWR.NET

If you need

to close, we’re close by.

You need partners that you can count on to help you close. As a local direct lender, Kinecta knows what it takes to close a home purchase in Southern California – we have the mortgage solutions to prove it: New! Portfolio Investment Property Program

Jumbo Loans

• Now up to $4 million • Up to 50% DTI • As low as 5% down

Government Programs

• Approved FHA Lender • New! VA Loans • HomeKinect – As low as 3% down*

• 30 year amortization, due in 15 years • $871,450 max. loan amount, as low as 620 FICO • 1-4 unit properties • Customized and competitive pricing without Fannie Mae standard loan level pricing adjustments!

Let’s close the deal – Contact us. George Deekrich, Sr. Mortgage Loan Consultant cell: 714.955.9191 NMLS #194556

Andy Deluca, Sr. Mortgage Loan Consultant cell: 949.291.7189 NMLS# 440903

Local banking for 80 years. *Kinecta is a participating lender in HomeReady® by Fannie Mae. Membership requirements apply. NMLS (Nationwide Mortgage Lending Service) ID: 407870. Information in this advertisement is intended for Real Estate and Mortgage Professionals only and not intended for consumer use as defined by Section 1026.2 of Regulation Z, which implements the Truth-In-Lending Act. Any expressed underwriting guidelines are subject to change without notice and are subject to Kinecta Federal Credit Union guidelines and all applicable federal and state rules and regulations. 21315-08/18

Once In A Lifetime


The opportunity to take that dream trip you have thought of for years.

Touché! Indeed, he is correct. Every moment of our lives is the last chance we get to live that moment.

Live for today my friends. Make today the best day that you can. Be aware of every moment and how it is the last time you will be able to make the decision on how to spend it.

subscriber recently wrote to me and asked me to consider this common phrase – Once in a Lifetime.

“Isn’t every moment of our lives, once in a lifetime?” he asked.

The opportunity to take that business risk.

What happens though is that we figure we will be able to live another moment in the same way we are passing on right now. Time becomes a commodity that we trade… and the riskiest commodity of all – futures! We pass on this moment for the option to live it in the future.

Today is your once in a lifetime opportunity to live your dreams, love your family, and make a difference.

The problem is that there is no guarantee of the future…

Chris Widener is the President of Made For Success. He teaches leaders how to become Extraordinary Leaders. Chris’ speaking and consulting services have challenged the best to become optimists, to pursue excellence relentlessly, and to dream big dreams. Copyright© 2007, Chris Widener. All rights reserved. For information about Chris’ speaking and consulting services, contact the FrogPond at 800.704. FROG(3764) or email; http://

Take some time this week to think about the Once in a Lifetime opportunities you are passing up each day: The opportunity to play with your children or grandchildren. The opportunity to love your spouse.


As the marketing profession would put it: Don’t miss this Once in a Lifetime Opportunity!

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Written By Chris Widener

ExecutiveAgent Magazine



Nomination Form Nominate a fellow REALTORÂŽ to be featured in one of our feature stories; on the cover as Executive Agent of the Month, or as a special feature story. All candidates must be nominated by a real estate professional. The selection process includes a questionnaire, personal interview, reference check and final approval by the Advisory Council. Candidates are evaluated based upon professionalism, length of service and uniqueness of story, as well as industry and community involvement.

I Nominate: Name_______________________________ Company___________________________ Address____________________________ _____________________________________ City, State, Zip_____________________ _____________________________________ Phone______________________________ Email_______________________________ Submitted By: Fax/Email nomination to: Executive Agent Magazine PO Box 73384 San Clemente, CA 92673 Fax: 949.266.8757 Email: Tel: 949.297.8323

Name_______________________________ Company___________________________ Phone______________________________ Email_______________________________


Cover Story

Executive Agents of the Month

ExecutiveAgent Magazine


Written by Haley Freeman - Photography by Ian Wiant

hen Jody Davis and Lorie Kapaun met, each was an independent agent with a thriving real estate practice. They felt an instant kinship with one another — as women and as professionals — and they saw an opportunity to join their strengths and resources in a way that would enhance the service they provided to their clients individually. A partnership was born, and with a move to Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

in Huntington Beach last year, their partnership is flourishing in new directions. “The move to Coldwell Banker has been amazing,” Lorie says. “The company’s international footprint, the IT support, the full-service marketing and the support for the work we do in the community have all added to the service we give our clients. It’s a great fit for us.”

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

With a real estate practice focused primarily in Huntington Beach and Orange County’s coastal areas, Jody and Lorie are certified experts in luxury properties. Coldwell Banker’s full listing concierge services provide sellers of fine homes with a full suite of amenities curated to enhance their real estate experience. Lorie continues, “It starts with fullservice professional photography. Then those photos are used in an individual website, flyers, virtual tours, social media advertising and print advertising in our ‘View’ magazine. We also give them television exposure on Channel 9 on Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m., where we run all of our listings. Homes receive maximum exposure, and sellers get full updates with detailed reports about where their marketing is appearing.” Orange County’s beautiful homes and unique lifestyle are continuing to draw people from around the world. While other agencies claim affiliations with outside, international companies, Coldwell Banker’s Global Luxury program includes 88,000 luxury sales specialists in approximately 3,000 offices in 49 countries and territories who are poised to market homes and connect buyers and sellers from every point on the compass. Jody and Lorie’s clients are feeling the benefits.

Jody explains, “There is a family I have worked with to sell numerous houses for different family members, and they recently approached me about a property they need help listing in Cairo. With Global Luxury, I was able to reach out and find exactly what I needed to help them. For Lorie and I to be able to pick up the phone and reach out to an agent in Egypt is incredible, and the client was impressed.” In addition to their certification as Coldwell Banker Global Luxury Property Specialists, Jody and Lorie have recently added a green certification to their list of credentials. “Lately, a lot of clients have been asking us about green homes,” Jody says. “This is something that is coming up more and more in the home buying conversation, especially with millennials. So, we looked into it and were able to get a green certification with Coldwell Banker.” This opportunity inspired Jody and Lorie to create a new smart home package for their clients. Lorie adds, “It’s a combination green and smart home technology, since smart home technology is helpful for making your home more energy efficient. It will be a big package with items like a Ring video doorbell and a Nest learning thermostat included in it. It’s a great value, and we’re really excited about it! Our clients who buy or sell with us will receive it.”

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Flourishing in New Directions

While Jody and Lorie describe themselves as opposites in many respects, they mesh completely in their uncompromising care for their clients and community. Thus, responsiveness and communication are top priorities. “Our primary number is a Google number so we both receive voice mails and texts,” Lorie says. “One of us almost always answers right away. As the industry is becoming more data-driven, responding to people quickly is more important than ever. And we feel that while everything is moving online, a computer can’t provide good customer service or negotiate for you. We’re here for our clients in every respect.” Jody adds, “We love to stay in communication with our clients so we can keep them informed about how we are following through on what we have promised. They have our full commitment, and we are 100 percent ready to respond. We are the same when it comes to resolving any issues that come up.

Sometimes things happen, and we are big on moving quickly and coming up with a solution that works for our clients. We’re known for our strength as negotiators and winning deals in multiple offer situations.” Jody and Lorie’s business is driven almost entirely by referrals and repeat clients, many of whom have shared their five-star experiences on various consumer platforms. One commented: “Jody and Lorie are not only quality professionals, they also add their own personal touch! They care about their clients and work tirelessly to assist with everything from negotiating a good price for a sale to ensuring that all the paperwork is done in a timely manner. I had a particularly difficult time at the end of my purchase when my lender was negligent in delivering my loan documents to complete my sale. Jody stepped in, working with the seller and me, the buyer, to ensure that I was able to move into my home! Jody and Lorie are the best!”

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Patriot Point Huntington Beach Clients often become friends, and remaining in touch with the people they have met through real estate is a regular part of Jody and Lorie’s routine. From small gestures like sending hand-written notes, to larger ones, like hosting client appreciation events, they continue to cultivate relationships long after a transaction has closed.

throughout Orange County, as they are active community advocates. At this year’s SeaCliff Tee it Up for the Troops, a golf event that raises funds to benefit disabled veterans, they sponsored all signage and served as auction chairs for the event. “This is our biggest event for the year, and we’re pretty passionate about it,” Lorie says.

Every Thanksgiving, they host a drop-in evening, where clients can stop by for some food and glass of wine, and take home a holiday pie. Last year, Lorie’s husband had just gone fishing and stocked their freezer with bluefin tuna. “I started giving away pie and tuna — which sounds like the weirdest combination — and for months afterward we heard tuna stories from people who were there that night,” Lorie laughs.

With their combination of business savvy, market knowledge and heartfelt care for people, this real estate duo continues to build a repertoire of skills and resources that makes every transaction a flawless process. As a result, generations of families trust Jody and Lorie to help them make their next move.

Jody and Lorie’s warmth extends to their neighbors ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Jody Davis & Lorie Kapaun

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage 2134 Main Street, Ste. 220, Huntington Beach, CA 92648 Tel: 714.595.5103 — 714.504.4623 Email: - Web: CalBRE # 01799331 / 01897430 ExecutiveAgent Magazine

How Business Women Who Are Positive Thinkers Win


hink back. Who inspired you on your path to leadership? We are all inspired by someone, somewhere, along the way in our career. It could have been a parent, grandparent, boss, friend or someone we just read about. Regardless, they did or said something that motivated us to attempt to achieve more and dream bigger. Aren’t you thankful? When you look at the source of your inspiration, I believe you’ll find someone who was positive at heart. Someone who never talked about how hard life was and how difficult the journey would be, but instead they were the kind of person who demonstrated positive thinking. How do I know? It is because dull, ordinary thinking never inspires us. Neither does thinking that drags us through the mud of all that go wrong and all that is bad in the world inspire us. As you lead people, whether it be children or employees or managers, remember that what you think is what you get. If you are to inspire people to greatness, you must think greatly yourself. This can only be done through positive thinking. As Ann Moore, Chairman and CEO of Time, Inc said in a recent speech at the 7th annual Wharton Women In Business Conference, “All behavior emanates from the top and reverberates down the organization to the lowest level.” Positive thinkers win! So, if you realize that positive thinking inspires and you realize that inspiration is what leads to achieving success, then how do you keep negative thinking from invading your space? Mark Victor Hanson, a great motivational speaker, once said “If you hear that negative voice trying to stop you, just visualize putting a big red X through it.”

Before you go to work, or on your way, take a few minutes to meditate on what you want to accomplish during the day. How will you do it? What is the best end result in your mind? Then see it. Feel it. Do it. You’ll feel the positive momentum the rest of the day. It does make a difference. By the way, there is a new World Positive Thinkers Club for those who want to expand their horizons and join the ranks of positive thinkers around the country. Check it out at Ken Bossone took 10 years of research and discovered the three word motto all Positive Thinkers have imbedded in their hearts, minds and souls that leads to constant winning and happiness. There are now over 500 members of the club in the professional sports and business world.” All Ken’s research resulted in this book ‘Why Do Positive Thinkers Win’. It is being considered right now for the shelves of libraries around the country. And remember, that it is you and your thinking that will help you achieve whatever it is that you are looking for in life. I hope you see a future full of lots of positive outcomes! Roxanne Batson is Managing Partner of WSN Sales 75 LLC, a global marketing company and Co-Founder, WomenCorp, an international women’s leadership training company. She is a speaker, author and sales trainer with 25 years of experience in business development for companies such as Southern Living, Merrill Lynch and TurnerBatson Architects. Copyright© Roxanne Batson. All rights reserved. For information about Roxanne’s presentations, contact FrogPond at 800.704.FROG(3764) or email;

My own belief is that we should start the day visualizing positive events.


ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Written By Roxanne Batson

ExecutiveAgent Magazine





Shane Knighton & Joe Fordonski


Written by Haley Freeman - Erin & Jake Photography

eet Shane Knighton, FVP of Business Services, and Joseph Fordonski, Manager of Commercial Loan Origination, at Kinecta Federal Credit Union — the commercial lender in your neighborhood. While many think of their local Kinecta Credit Union as a great place to open a checking or savings account, or obtain a car loan,

they may not realize that Kinecta also offers a full spectrum of commercial products and services. Kinecta’s commercial division provides members with real estate loans, business credit cards, merchant services, deposit accounts and SBA loans for business acquisition, working capital, tenant improvement and business expansion.

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Gail Jansen - VP, Business Services Operations and Credit; Joe Fordonski - Manager, Commercial Loan Originations; Sandra Sanchez - Director, Operations and Loan Servicing; Shane Knighton - FVP, Business Services During his 30-plus years in commercial lending, Joseph has worked with some of the world’s largest financial institutions. He joined Kinecta seven years ago to help kickstart its commercial lending programs, and discovered a culture where people matter over profits. “This is probably the best of both worlds as far as commercial real estate lending goes. After working in the huge banking realm, it’s great to work inside a culture focused on relationships first and foremost. We get to know our members, how they got where they are today, and what their vision is for the future.” Joseph leads a team of five originators whom he describes as a talented group of people who strive for meaningful connection with members from the very first contact. “In hiring, I look for someone who takes the extra step to make it about more than a transaction, but a relationship.”

Shane brings more than 20 years of commercial lending experience to his role at Kinecta, where he has been instrumental in nearly doubling the company’s commercial loan portfolio, which is now approaching $1 billion. He came to Kinecta with a passion for its not-for-profit model that prioritizes service and value to its members above all else. This spirit drives a flexible approach to lending that responds to changing needs within local communities. He explains, “One thing that sets us apart is our willingness to respond to underserved communities, lending on certain property types or geographies that are less desirable to other lenders. Some of our core values are to be resourceful, find the best solution and do the right thing. Our mission is to continue growing so we can keep serving our members in the ways they need us.”

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

The Commercial Lender in Your Neighborhood “For example,” Joseph adds, “we financed four mobile home parks in Lancaster and provided affordable housing for people in a lower-income community. We standardly handle what we call the four food groups of commercial lending: office, industrial, retail and multi-family, but we also have a nice exposure in self-storage facilities and mobile home parks.” As a portfolio lender that funds and services its own commercial real estate and SBA loans, Kinecta

makes it a practice to consider each borrower and lending scenario on its own merits. “No two people and no two deals are the same,” Shane says. “I like having the opportunity to look at each one as an opportunity for learning something new. Of course, a loan needs to make sense. We’re looking for typical debt service coverage ratios with loan terms of 15 years maximum with up to 30 years’ amortization, and we usually cap out at 70 percent loan-to-value. We don’t have a prepayment penalty, which is a huge benefit to our members.”

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

Kinecta walks its talk in more than just the way it does business. It is also a leader in community outreach, serving numerous worthy causes through donations of both time and money. Kinecta employees are strongly encouraged to volunteer, and each receives eight hours of paid time off to participate in their cause of choice. Joseph notes, “Here at the Newport office we have a group that goes to help out at the Second Harvest Food Bank each month. It’s not only great for the community, but also promotes camaraderie among our team, as well, and reminds us to appreciate what we have.” With their years of experience and credentials, both Shane and Joseph could choose to work for any commercial lending institution, but Shane explains why they choose Kinecta: “I read a lot about how companies are using culture as a way to attract millennials. But that consideration came after the fact here. Kinecta has always been a place that puts its members and the community first, and it shows just how genuine the organization is. We choose to work for Kinecta because we enjoy working for a company that aligns with our values. It’s great to come to work

in a place where we can laugh and have fun at what we do, while knowing we are making a difference for our members.” Kinecta Federal Credit Union 4041 MacArthur Boulevard, Suite 100 Newport Beach, CA 92660 Web: Shane Knighton FVP Business Services Office: (949) 253-5373 Cell: (949) 423-9855 Joseph B. Fordonski Manager, Commercial Loan Originations Office: (310) 643-4683 Cell: (310) 662-3573 E-mail:

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

How to Trample High Turnover and Turn More Profits


hat’s your agent turnover? In some companies, it’s 100% a year! Just think of the lost income, lost time, and lost opportunities! (See the handout this month to figure out just how much it costs you when an agent fails—you’ll be stunned!)

1. Culturize

Were you surprised? Yet, many brokers tell me it costs them nothing when an agent leaves (at the same time, the broker wonders why she can’t recruit winners). Many times, we don’t see the connection between recruiting and retaining. After you do this worksheet, though, I think you’ll get the connection strong and clear!

4. Create support

A simple yet uncommon solution to high agent turnover: An awesome onboarding process. Why Onboarding is So Important. Imagine you’re a new agent (or new to your office). What are you doing that first day? The first week? The first month? 60 days? 90 days? Write down exactly how your office guides that agent through these time periods. Be sure to list managerial/coaching interactions with the agent, too (when you review the agent’s progress). Is your paper pretty blank? If so, you’re missing the opportunity to create loyalty in the new hire with these four actions:


2. Familiarize 3. Form relationships

How People Feel with a Weak Onboarding Process I just read a wonderful study from (the recognition products company). They talked with and studied onboarding procedures in companies and found: 1. Companies that leave onboarding to chance experience a 50% higher failure to retain rates. 2. 89% of new hires say they do not have the optimum level of knowledge and tools necessary to do their job. 3. 61% of hires say they’ve found aspects of a new job different than expectations set during the interview process. 4. On day one of a new job, 67% of Millennials are already thinking about looking for another job.

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

5. New hires are 69% more likely to stay more than three years if they’ve experienced a well-structured onboarding program. 6. 86% of new hires decide to stay or leave within the first six months.

First Steps to Take 1. Review your onboarding process as asked in this article.

The Operations You Need in Place 1. Support: First day checklist with a check-in between manager and new hire.

3. Ask those who’ve joined you in the past 6 months to review and analyze their onboarding process and make suggestions.

2. Familiarize: Thorough operational checklists for the first 1-4 weeks—with a place for the administrator AND the new hire to check off to assure work has been completed; check-in weekly for support.

4. Create deadlines for portions of your onboarding process to be finished.

3. Culturize: A company workshop with all company leaders to explain the culture, the training, the materials/ support (technology, opportunities) the company provides. 4. Form relationships: a mentor program. Higher Retention Rates with Mentors Do you have a mentor program? Retention rates for hires who are mentored are 72% higher than those who aren’t. A caveat: Your mentor program must have clear focus, guidelines, and training for your mentors. Someone must manage the mentors. Otherwise, both mentor and new hire will be let down.

2. Get a task force together to review your process.

Taking Away the Fear of the Unknown is a Great Recruiting Tool. So often, the fear of change stops a good agent (or even a prospective agent), from joining a company. Having a thorough, friendly, supportive, culturizing onboarding process and showing it to your potential recruits will go a long way in alleviating their anxiety and helping them make the decision to join you. Carla Cross, CRB, MA, is an international speaker, writer, and coach, specializing in real estate management. Her Leadership Mastery Coaching program is unique in the industry. A National Realtor Educator of the Year, Carla was recently named one of the 50 most influential women in real estate. Join Carla’s Community and receive special offers and free resources. Contact Carla at 425-392-6914 or http://www.

ExecutiveAgent Magazine



n this age of finely tuned niche marketing, I find surprisingly few Realtors® who position themselves as specialists.

you have to give him or her something to work with! If you do like the financing angle, that may be an area for you to focus on.

Most other professionals position themselves as specialists. Doctors do it. Lawyers do it. Dentists do it. Even chefs, landscapers, decorators and CPA’s specialize in one segment of the market that they know inside out. They become a knowledgeable resource and the ultimate expert in their field. And everyone likes to work with an expert.

How about working with people with damaged credit? That certainly takes some skill and finesse. I’ve got friends in lending who just adore putting the pieces of the puzzle together till it looks like a viable loan!

You are a professional. I’m sure there is something that you do better than most other Realtors®. What is it? And how do you get the word out? Let’s start with “what is it?” Which customers do you like to work with best? When and where are you most effective? Is there a particular area, buyer or price range that you could sell and talk about all day long? Examples: If you are bi-lingual, you might position yourself as the lender who specializes in the .....(ethnic) community. Home-buying is tough enough to understand in your native language! If English was not my first language, I’d really appreciate having someone explain things to me in my mother tongue! You might consider compiling a glossary in that language as a resource for your clients. Do you love working with first time home-buyers? Does that bring out the nurturer, the teacher, the counselor in you? Position yourself as the First Time Home Buyer Specialist! Do you remember getting your first home? I do! And it was tough. No one wanted to take the time to explain all the details to me. There are wonderful booklets available free or close to free from the government’s printing office in Pueblo, Colorado. Keep some on hand to enhance your image, and offer helpful information. Are you really good at government loans or creative financing? That takes a certain amount of experience and expertise that not everyone has. We’ve all seen perfectly good loans rejected because an amateur didn’t know the ropes. And while a lender can back you up 32

We work together to make it happen. Again, make sure that clients and potential clients understand that what you do is not easy. We’re not talking whining but perhaps you’ve compiled “a 54 item check list to assist your clients in the process of repairing credit and getting a loan.” ¾ so that they can actually buy a house. If nothing comes immediately to mind, you might track your last 50 buyers and see if more than 20% of them had anything in common. It might be a product, it might be a personality type or an occupation. For example, if you find that accountants really enjoy working with you and you serve their needs well, that might be a specialty that you could pursue. Once you figure out what your specialty is then add that catchy phrase to your business card, write a couple of press releases and start giving talks at civic, social and service clubs to let people know what you do and how good you are. Now isn’t that special? Linda Brakeall, GRI, CRB, is a nationally recognized expert in sales and marketing for Realtors®. Linda, a Realtor® for 13 years, three of which were as an award wining sales person, spent the next ten years as a manager and corporate trainer. She has been speaking professionally speaking, training and consulting since 1992. Copyright© 2001, Linda Brakeall. All rights reserved.For info about Linda, please contact The Frog Pond Group at 800-704-FROG (3764) or email susie@;

ExecutiveAgent Magazine

You are a professional. I’m sure there is something that you do better than most other RealtorsŽ

ExecutiveAgent Magazine


Our bone marrow transplant reunion is now standing room only. Each year, City of Hope invites bone marrow transplant recipients and their families to attend the “Celebration of Life” event. It’s a joyous time during which survivors of blood cancers such as lymphoma, leukemia and myeloma embrace their health, their life and each other. It began more than 35 years ago when City of Hope created what is now one of the largest and most successful bone marrow transplant programs in the world. In fact, we’ve completed over 11,000 transplants and, according to national reports, our outcomes are among the best in the nation. The goal of curing cancer isn’t just something we work at. It’s what we live for. If you have cancer, make us your first call. Or ask your doctor for a referral. We accept most insurance. 800-826-HOPE

COH-0726_BMT_Hem_fp_4c_ExecAgt.indd 1

WE LIVE TO CURE CANCER. Science saving lives.

11/25/13 6:02 PM

Contact us today for more information about this exciting program! Finance of America Mortgage Newport Beach NMLS ID-1071

o: (949) 398-3650 f: (949) 502-3765

Profile for Executive Agent Magazine



Profile for