There’s one thing we say over and over again at Quantus, we love our people. Well, that and we like to have fun too.
This year, we decided to bring those two things together, launching a new show called Around the Cooler (Netflix, we’re coming for you). In each episode, we’ll sit down around the cooler with one of our brokers or industry friends, have some laughs, maybe a few drinks, and play a game.
Think In Between Two Ferns combined with Jimmy Fallon. Sounds like a solid show, right?
To kick things off in our inaugural episode, we invited our broker Jan Hicks to sit with Quantus co-owner, Todd Fralic, around the cooler. It’s fair to say, Jan is born to be a TV star, if she ever decides to move on from brokering.
Tell Us A Bit About Your Background
I’m originally from Regina, Saskatchewan which means I’m a Rider’s fan (Go Riders!) and I’m going into my 36th year in this industry!
I started in Household Trust in Regina, moving to Royal Bank where I worked for six years. After that, I moved to Manitoba where I worked at Scotiabank in Brandon, followed by working at the local co-op as the credit manager.
I headed back to Regina, working as the Credit Union assistant manager before my ex and I made the decision to head to Alberta.
We moved to Red Deer, where I worked with the credit union as a travelling loan officer, which was awesome. Then, I moved back to the Royal Bank where I was the branch manager in Red Deer before I decided to move into mortgages.
I moved onto TD where I was a road rep. I trained for eight months before I turned to the dark side—brokering. That was in 2003 and I haven’t looked back since!
I actually still have clients calling me asking if I’m still doing mortgages. I usually say I’m going to be 83 and still doing mortgages…I’ll broker till I die! So, I love what I do.
What’s Been Exciting For You in the Last Few Years
I’ve very excited to have two new people on my team; my son, Zak, and my daughter, Zoe.
Zak just finished his university finance degree and he’s come on as a full-time broker, working out of Regina. Which is cool, I’m Alberta and he’s Saskatchewan (in case anyone needs a mortgage in Saskatchewan!)
Then Zoe, who has finished her degree in Sociology from Lousiana Tech, where she played softball. If you ask her what her degree is she says softball. She’s been able to play Pro Ball in Amsterdam travel the world, so softball has been great for her. Now, she’s doing our client relationship management as well as my social media.
It’s been lots of fun and it’s been very cool to have them working with me.
What Is One Thing People Don’t Know About You
Well, I’m kind of an open book (in case you haven’t been able to tell, I have a hard time talking to people.)
But, one thing that people don’t know is that in all my years of being a banker, I have not had a cup of coffee. Not one.
I’ve smlled it in the coffee room, but I’ve never, ever had a cup of coffee.
What Are You Most Proud Of?
I’m going to try not to get teary-eyed, but I’m most proud of the human beings I’ve raised. They are my best achievement ever. Even if I did a bazillion dollars in mortgages, it doesn’t come close to how proud I am of my kids.
In my business, I enjoy what I do. I have wonderful clients. They’re caring, they’re loving, and a lot of them have been friends for a long time. You know, I’ve had previous clients refer other clients who are moving to Alberta from other parts of Canada saying, “So and so said you could get this done for me,” so that’s just really cool.
What Makes You Laugh the Hardest?
I love to laugh. And when I laugh at something, like really belly laugh, it’s like my mom is right there with me (she’s been gone eight years now).
But, what makes me laugh the hardest? Probably Norm’s (my husband's) stupid dad jokes. And, I have to hear them like 18,000 times, but they are still quite funny.
Tell Us About Your Love For the Q
The main reason I use the Q, besides being so proud to be a Quantus member, is because it generates conversation. It’s simple. People ask, “what is that?” I’ve actually completed someone’s mortgage after they asked me what the Q was about.
I’ve got the Q on everything; I’ve got it on all my golf gear, my jackets. Norm wears it. Zach and Zoe wear it. My brother in Regina wears it. We make sure it’s spread around!
On That, Tell Us About Your Unique Tattoo
Oh yes, we have to get this in writing! It was for our Quantus 10 year in 2019 and we had all gone to Vegas. And that first night, we had all gone for dinner and had some drinks, and everyone says, “let’s get a tattoo!” So, I say, “what about the Q?” and everyone loves it.
Well, the next day, the tattoo idea was still in my mind but we hadn’t gone yet. Then the next day, it was Thursday, it was our last day as a team and we’re like, we need to book our appointment! So, I sent the shop a picture of the Q and went in.
Now, this is my first tattoo and I didn’t really know what a tattoo was, I thought it was really dark ink…I didn’t know there was going to be pain! So, with the help of a friend holding my hand, I get through it and we went to our last team event.
So I show up and I see Todd first. Someone goes, “Todd, look what Jan did!” Not a word of a lie, Todd looks at my ankle and with a straight face goes, “well, that’s a pretty big commitment!” I immediately started thinking “what did I do?!” and then I go show Paul (other Quantus owner) and he hugs me and tears come to his eyes. It was quite funny because Todd did not smile at all!
Of course, we’re never rebranding now!
To clear the air, Todd likes it and is very honoured that Jan would use the Q as her first tattoo!
What Some of the Charities You Like to Support
Besides Community Key, which a portion of every mortgage we do goes into, Zak and I have sponsored a Special Olympics soccer team in Regina. They are the gentlest, more amazing people and so appreciative.
Zak was just there in December handing out their new jerseys and gear, which of course all have the Q on them! Because Zak played hockey in university, they all think he’s a superstar, which is always so fun. He attends all their practices, so we are very, very fortunate to be part of that organization. It’s something near and dear to our hearts.
Thank you, Jan for joining us for our first-ever, Around the Cooler. It was a fantastic interview and we could have probably kept going for another hour.
Make sure to follow Jan and her crew on social media (thanks to the help of Zoe!).