Take a look around your office at all the new gadgets you have to assist you in your job that were not available 5, 10, 20 or 30 years ago. Five years ago, there were no tablet PCs portable enough to carry in your pocket capable of holding the contents of your entire desktop computer. Ten years ago, your mobile phone’s purpose was to dial out and receive incoming phone calls (not to mention they were a lot heavier), now it is a mini computer allowing you to run your business and play Candy Crush while posting status updates on Facebook. Twenty years ago, email began replacing faxes and 30 years ago faxes replaced waiting for snail mail to arrive. You had to go to the library to look up information, and you could afford to wait days to get it. Today, no so much.
Within this timeframe, industry credit groups have changed as well. Thirty + years ago, these groups were 95% male and the liquor bill was double the food tab. Now they are predominately female and iced tea is the drink of preference. All of these changes have provided today’s credit manager with better tools to make decisions, monitor those decisions and react immediately and appropriately.
Why then, has the credit group meeting gone virtually unchanged for the 3 decades I have been attending? My theory is that the system of exchanging up-to-the-minute credit experiences within your industry, sharing Best Practices and networking with your peers provides more valuable data than any technological advances that have been developed to date.
At a June meeting, a member’s inquiry about a new credit application resulted in two responses of pending litigation. In 30 seconds, her work on this file was done, NO credit report ordered, NO references sent, No phone calls made. Clear half a dozen accounts and the hour-long meeting has saved you 8 hours of investigating and updating.
So the next time you scan a file from your IPAD, download it to your IPHONE and email it to your attorney for suit, consider whether this all could have been avoided had you attended your industry group meeting?
Some things just cannot be improved on.
Have a great August
Supervisor-Industry Credit Groups