Mar 13, 2021Liked by Loren Feldman

We were with middle-of-the-road regional bank for 24 years. Although they were smaller...they acted like a big bank.

The people on the front-lines (tellers, teller supervisors, and branch managers) were all nice people who had absolutely ZERO power to do anything that was anything outside of the book (including once not cashing a check that slightly spelled our company name wrong). And when it was time to ask for a small ($200,000) line of credit (we are a $10M and very profitable company), the real decision makers turned us down flat for because it didn't meet their minimum requirements (although they would never actually explain what those minimum requirements were)

About 3 years ago...a friend told me about a new local bank and gave me a contact name. Within a few days, I was invited to have breakfast with the bank's president, CEO, and chief credit officer. Within days I opened an account with them...I was approved for a $250K LOC (which I still haven't used after 3 years).

Last year, when I applied for a PPP loan, they provided me with all the information I needed to apply and was approved within 48 hours...6 months later they help me to navigate the forgiveness paperwork and my loan was forgiven in 4 weeks after applying for forgiveness. When the 2nd round of PPP became available, they reached out to me to let me know that I might want to consider applying, and again, within 48-hours my business was approved and funded a week later.

A giant shout-out goes to Endeavor Bank, Steve Sefton - President and Dan Yates - CEO for really behaving like a true partner to me and my company

Expand full comment
Mar 13, 2021Liked by Loren Feldman

I was a true believer in Credit Unions until I opened my business and the CU I'd been dealing with for a few years had a "no business accounts" policy. I then moved to a small, local bank that handled mortgages as well as businesses, both large and small. When I was interviewing banks, I took note of how long their VPs/SVPs had been there to see if there was a lot of mobility to/from the bank and it appeared as though there was very little - indicating that decision-makers liked it there. High on my list were two things: The ability to talk to the right person when I walked in (or shortly thereafter if they were busy and no appointment) and the ability to talk to a person in less than two "press X for" on the phone. I also checked their stability in so much as I could and wanted to get a feel if they were going to get slurped up by one of the Bigs anytime soon. After interviewing three banks, I chose one and haven't looked back since. While my bank does offer credit cards for both business and personal use, I stuck with the Bigs because of the reward programs associated with those cards.

I have both my personal and business accounts there. They handled my mortgage. During the 2020 COVID crunch they expertly navigated the system for both PPP and SBA EIDL loans. They were conservative in their advice with respect to PPP application and forgiveness paperwork (and they handled all of the paperwork for me).

My 2-cents. Anytime you have the opportunity to work with a person and to hold them accountable for their actions (or inaction) you're better off than working with the machine.

Expand full comment

I'm looking forward to this discussion Loren and really appreciate you putting it together.

The past year has challenged the banking environment in ways it was never challenged before. I believe that meaningful change often requires adversity. In my mind, it is clear that adversity to a strong multiple happened. I'm excited to see the innovative and important changes it can help facilitate.

Expand full comment