What does it take to be a good credit manager?
Being a good credit manager takes organizational and analytical skills. It takes someone who is able to see all the pieces of the credit puzzle and then organize those pieces so that wise credit decisions can be made.
What’s tricky for many people is that the puzzle pieces often look like they’ll never fit together. Before the pieces are sorted, they can appear unrelated and unworkable. But with the right skills, a good credit manager can pull all the information together, making sense of a lot of information.
Do you possess the skills to be a good credit manager? Take a look at our list to see how you measure up:
Do you know the laws?
Local, state and federal laws vary from state to state. Can you sort through the details to understand how credit is affected in your area? Comprehension of the U.C.C. (Uniform Commercial Code) is essential but it’s not the whole puzzle. For instance, in some jurisdictions, your creditors actions may create a liability for you. It’s your job to know what those liabilities are.
Are you analytical?
There’s meaning behind every figure on a financial statement. Are you able to understand the data that created the numbers on the page? In order to spot a trend, you must be able to compare statements and analyze the meaning of the changes you see and then anticipate how the changes might affect your company.
Are you a people-person?
Do you work well with people? Are you able to analyze individual situations in order to negotiate toward a sound credit decision? In order to negotiate skillfully, you must be able to connect and communicate effectively. Which leads us to the next point:
Are you an effective communicator?
Do people easily understand what you’re saying? Do you have a knack for persuasion? As credit manager, you’ll not only speak with customers, but you’ll also find yourself working to bridge communication between departments within your company. Are you able to see a situation from every vantage point?
Are you easily swayed?
A good credit manger must analyze and weigh the facts, independently of the opinions of others. Are you the type who can compartmentalize facts, emotions and opinions in order to make decisions?
Do you own your decisions?
Are you a ‘the buck stops here’ type of personality? As a credit manager, you and you alone must bear the responsibility of your decisions.
Are you flexible?
Do you handle curve balls with finesse? When things don’t pan out the way you anticipated, do you go with the flow and make it work? Handling unforeseen circumstances with the right attitude is a must.
Do you have integrity?
There’s not a person reading this who would say, “No” when answering this question. Of course you have integrity, right? What you have to ask yourself is this: Am I willing to do the right thing even if it’s inconvenient or complicated?
Not everyone is cut out for the job of credit manager. But if you possess the skills listed, you may just have the right stuff.
What do you think makes a good credit manager? What would you add to this list?