Updated: Apr 16, 2020
How to satisfy the Customer and your internal clients.
What are any of us trying to accomplish in our pursuits? We want to build, engage others positively, experience satisfaction in a 'job well-done', and build an honorable reputation.
So what are we building?
Let me suggest, our 'builds' are, or should always be win-win. The 'positive end-product' can be intrinsic or tangible value creation, innovation, a vision realized, serving others, acclaim, and profit. It may mean building a positive reputation, establishing a future income stream, or setting up charitable endeavors.
So what is the engagement of others?
It a prerequisite for business activities and a requirement or a healthy life. In order to generate value and income, we need to engage customers, suppliers, workers, experts, and visionaries to bring an idea to functionality and eventually profitability.
The engagement of these players should bring satisfaction, a sense of family, and encouragement to move forward towards the stated vision. The free flow of ideas, shared experiences, respect of persons, and collaboration is the fertile ground for innovation and success.
So what is satisfaction?
I have a deep satisfaction in my job when I know I have met a need. It's emotional. The moments in the workplace I remember are where I impact the 'builds' personally or professionally of others. The satisfaction manifests itself in greater focus, energy and a positive disposition.
So what about reputation?
We cannot 'build' including reputations, if we do not understand the goals of those with whom we work and engage. If our 'builds' are not in sync, or counter are productive, self-motivations become dominant and friction is created. Our goals and builds must be in harmony or integrated.
Satisfying the Customer
From a credit perspective we need to know the requirements Customer in the short-term and long-term.
Credit communication with Sales is key as is the communication between Sales and the Customer. The effort of Sales organizations to find and foster relationships for the long-term is difficult and can be frustrated by credit, or other administrative functions, if they are not cognizant of the efforts. Sales is effective in developing current and future sales when it takes the time to know the customer.
Sales organizations are to be admired, when they meet with Customers to truly understand them. This includes knowing their: a) business plan or 5 year plan, b) product preferences, c) regional or national requirements and restrictions, d) finance condition and challenges, e) competitive pressures, f) character of management and g) business reputation.
It is my primary burden and satisfaction, when Credit can preserve the ground work, facilitate the sale, and establish credit to meet the current and log-term needs of the Customer.
When involved directly with Sales or the Customer, Credit looks to establish 'credit-worthiness', determine a ceiling at the outset, establish the Customer's short-term and long-term needs, and what if anything more is required from the Customer.
You should be able to say that the Credit Department has not lost a single sale for its organization. It's not hard to do, but that is also not to suggest sales are not lost. Credit is charged to determine 'credit worthiness', recommend mitigation options, or build a profile so the 'business' can make a decision in light of their tolerance.
Be clear, Credit has the lighter burden. Sales does the heavy lifting, Credit assesses and approves, and management is burdened with exception decisions or the cost of protecting the Company's interest. Credit sets up the mitigation apparatus.