‘Tis the season… from Roy Stout, CMA Board Chairman

‘tis the season…

I will let you fill in the blanks.  I suspect each of us has a phrase or two that suits us.  I can think of several:

…to be thankful.

Think of the tremendous support we receive from so many others.  We have the opportunity to work with a lot of terrific people within our companies.  We should be grateful for the support they provide us in accomplishing our goals.  This is a great time of the year to extend acknowledgment and appreciation to as many people as you can for the help that they have given you to succeed at your job.

How about a little something extra in the stockings of those love ones who make certain sacrifices, so that, we can pursue our professional careers?

…to be thoughtful of our past associates.

Think of all the people who have helped shape our lives both personally and professionally.  A short note to keep in touch with those that we have let drop from our day to day activities will reap huge rewards. 

Take a moment to reflect about those who have passed on to realize what they meant to us and to remember how they inspired us.

…to be introspective of recent accomplishments and recent disappointments.

This is where we, as credit professionals, excel.  We always reflect on our numbers every month, every quarter and every year-end (which is just around the corner for a lot us).  But I have often been a proponent of the belief that one is best served by a thorough review of our major disappointments.  For I feel that is where the best lessons can be learned and the greatest opportunities lie. 

This is an excellent season to mend fences with friends, peers, fellow workers or anyone with whom you might not have been the best person that you could have been.

…to think strategically about the future.

Another thing we credit professionals do pretty well.  We never have long to celebrate our successes or mourn our defeats, as time marches on and we need to concentrate on the next month’s collections.  But I think as we approach a new year we need to take a long hard look at everything.

Did you experience personal and professional growth this year?  If not, make that your commitment for the next twelve months. CMA, NACM, CFDD all offer excellent classes, webinars and now on-line courses.  Even educational institutions now offer more relevant courses for our profession.  Get your certification.

Were the goals of your company and your department met?  If not, now is the time to dedicate yourself to the task of meeting those goals during the next year.  If all of the goals were met, then set new and loftier goals.  In my opinion, the accomplishment of something you thought unattainable is among the most gratifying feelings.

Did you have an opportunity to mentor someone?  Another truly rewarding experience.  If not, try to accomplish that this next year.  It is easier than you think.  It can be started as simple as asking one of your peers to attend an industry credit group meeting or a seminar with you or even share a webinar.  The rest is easy because they will realize that someone is interested in their growth and success as a credit professional.

Were you mentored this year?  Seek out a mentor.  There is an overwhelming abundance of information and experience that so many seasoned credit professionals are willing to share with you.  Do not miss this opportunity.

…to enjoy!

So, I hope each and every one of you continues to have a great holiday season with friends and family.  I also hope, like me, you can’t wait to get started on the pursuit of next year’s hopes and dreams.

Until we meet again, enjoy your successes, don’t fret about your failures and keep pedaling as fast as you can.