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Jon Swan

Jon Swan

Director
Forums International Ltd

The following article was originally published in CCR Magazine, October 2021. A PDF copy can be accessed here.

The new networking opportunities for those new to credit

I am starting this article with four questions:-

  1. Are you new (or newish) to the Credit profession?
  2. If so, do you want to start to network with other credit professionals outside of your company and sector?
  3. Do you want to network with experienced senior credit professionals who can help guide you on your career path?
  4. Are you a credit manager/leader that seeks to encourage your team members to network more within our profession and therefore enhance their learning and development?

If the answer is Yes to any one of these questions, then please read on.

There are very few professions that network quite like the credit profession. I had an FD as a boss at Dell who couldn’t understand our desire to network – his thought was “I can’t think of anything worse than being in a room full of other accountants”!

Having said that, over many years I have observed that networking and forging relationships with others tends to be mostly at management level.  Therefore, it is not easy and potentially daunting, for those new to credit who want to start networking. When I say “new to Credit” I include all those on apprenticeships, school leavers, graduates, and anyone more mature who has moved into Credit from other areas and wants to learn more and interact with fellow professionals.

So what are the advantages of networking? As someone who has been an active member of several forums for well over 25 years the pros considerably outweigh any cons (I’m not sure there are any!). The chance to talk with fellow professionals who share the same challenges and issues is a great way to find solutions. The “wisdom” of senior credit folk when I was younger proved invaluable and I would say without any doubt that my networking through forums enhanced my career particularly during the ten years I spent at Dell.

Over many years I have observed that networking and forging relationships with others tends to be mostly at management level. Therefore, it is not easy and potentially daunting, for those new to credit who want to start networking.

At Forums International we are working on an initiative that will develop a networking forum exclusively for those new to Credit.  It will give people a chance to talk and share experiences with others across all sectors and for those studying, such as CICM, a valuable opportunity to learn and gain from networking. It is also a social benefit for people to not only develop professional relationships but friendships as well. We will have excellent presenters facilitating the latest and best advice and updates whether it be insolvency law, economic outlook, software developments or any other Credit related topic. There won’t be a forum that you will not take something away from as a learning experience – guaranteed!

When we set out on a career we will be faced with difficult hurdles and some of them may seem too daunting and without doubt you will have major concerns at taking big steps forward, for example, managing people for the first time and having to make decisions. Wouldn’t it be great to have a forum to listen to the experiences of credit professionals who have started that journey as well as those experienced managers who have achieved success at a senior level? That would be a huge confidence booster as well as a invaluable learning experience.

Credit Management is a great career that provides huge opportunities for development for those that desire it and, as part of that toolbox of skills, knowledge and ability, networking is very much a key component of that development.

If you want to learn more about this opportunity, please get in touch as we want potential members to help us shape this forum so it delivers what is really needed.

Contact Us for More Information

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