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Question (from a Business Banker): I would love to hear your suggestions on what I could read up on to become a better banker. I would like to strengthen my knowledge on credit and industry trends – specifically, manufacturing, real estate, and dental practices. Would you mind sending me some ideas?

 

Answer: I applaud you for taking the initiative to reach out. Quick thoughts:

  1. Explore some LinkedIn groups in the areas you are interested in. Look for ones that have some of the prospects you are targeting.

  2. Subscribe to some blogs or publications sponsored by industry associations or “thought leaders.” (There are consultants to all those industries who are churning out relevant information on a regular basis.)

  3. Use industry research. Most of the providers offer updates when they publish something new.

  4. Use Google alerts to track specific prospects.

  5. For dentists, check out the material on the website of a bank you have never heard of but may have lost business to—Live Oak Bank in Wilmington, NC. They are a niche player and major SBA lender that caters to—among others—dentists. Pay attention to the articles they have for dentists.

  6. Talk to your Sales Manager about what internal or external courses he might suggest to help you beef up your credit skills. RMA is a great resource.

Think about your own professional development. Are there any courses/ webinars/ books out there that would make you a better banker? Do you need to get smarter about LinkedIn? Not sure what to focus on? Ask your bank’s Training Department or send me an email at nmiller@mzbierlyconsulting.com for some ideas.