The pandemic has taught us
things, personally and professionally. Working and communicating remotely, managing projects and teams, and being creative to stay in business, are just a few of the pandemic lessons.
COVID-19 placed a spotlight on the depth and quality of your company's banking relationship. The PPP loan program was an essential bridge for thousands of companies, most of whom needed the money to blunt their business's downturn due to the economic shutdown. Everyone scrambled to understand the PPP loan program while they navigated their way through it. Businesses and banks alike rose to the occasion, and despite some stumbles, accomplished a remarkable financial lift for businesses in a short time.
Are you still satisfied with your banking relationship? Did your bank serve you well during the crisis? If not, how do you begin the process of finding another bank?
Before You Look for a New Bank, Do this First
Your banking relationship starts with the needs of your business. When you have clarified the banking services your company requires to move forward, it becomes easier to identify the bank that can best meet those needs.
Remember, banks are like any other business. Most banks have developed a market segment in which they are experts. If you want to eat sushi, you don't go to a Mexican food restaurant. Choosing a great bank partner is no different. You have to know your company's needs before you start looking for a new bank.
Take the time to analyze your company's financial needs before seeing a new banker.
As a business leader, analyze your company's deposit requirements, Treasury management needs, and the usability of the bank platform and technology. What type of loans and debt does your business need for its capital structure?
These are just a few of the areas to analyze inside your company. At Shields Legal Group, we have helped a large number of closely-held companies select the right bank. The analysis does not start with the bank, but with an internal, objective determination of your company's needs.
Two Reasons to Start with Your Company's Needs First
There are two reasons to review your company's banking needs before starting the search for a new bank. First, when you understand the banking services your company needs, you can hone your search and target those banks who are experts in those areas.
Second, when you know what your business needs to survive, you can set expectations with the bank officer, creating several advantages. When you establish expectations early in the process, it reduces time and yields better results. Another advantage is to explain to the bank officer that you need a quick "no" to any request. A prolonged "no" can be damaging because it hinders your ability to act. Finally, setting expectations early in the new relationship sets the stage for your company's financial needs to be met by a trustworthy banking partner.
What to Do Next
Responsive, trustworthy and resilient banking partners are more important than ever. Please reach out to me at jshields@ShieldsLegal.com or call me at 972-267-3467, to learn more about our proven process. We can help your business connect with the bank that suits your needs.