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Taking stock of the future: NACM's 101st Credit Congress.

During tour program packed days in May, more than 2000 credit professionals attended NACM's 101st Credit Congress in Salt Lake City, where they gained critical insights into the changing business of credit.

Attendees heard dynamic presentations from the keynote speakers. NACM's 1996-97 Chairman of the Board, Jim McIntyre, CCE, opened the convention by thanking the Convention Host Committee, and NACM Intermountain's President, Logan Bagley, CCE and his staff for the hours of support and assistance they provided. McIntyre noted that he thought it incredible that 12 short months ago, he stood on the stage in Chicago and accepted the challenge of serving as NACM's National Chairman of the Board. He said, "I remember reading somewhere that the one thing anyone can count on as a constant in life is change. And, as I look back on this past year, the recurring element has been change - for me personally, as well as for this great association of ours."

This year, attendees explored pathways to the future, because our industry has had to make dramatic changes to stay ahead of the technology curve and to compete globally with shrinking resources. Mcintyre also reflected upon the issue of change, saying, "As I prepared for this year's convention, I was reminded of how much we, as credit professionals, have had to face change. We have exhibitors next door on our Expo Hall floor, promoting goods and services that solve problems we didn't even know we would have five or 10 years ago. . .Where some see technology gains as the basis for cutting even more jobs, I think that we should view it as an opportunity to free our days from repetitive tasks, enabling us to concentrate on more strategic projects."

Attendees also heard the results of the Credit Research Foundation's study on the future of credit. Rich DelCore, Director of Customer Financial Services for the North American Region of the Procter & Gamble Company, led the project team. According to DelCore, the credit profession is facing a crisis. He suggested that credit professionals accept the idea that the pace of change is accelerating every day and that there are many factors working against a future as a credit professional, saying, ". . .there is a lack of knowledge within the credit community on managing global credit, despite the number of resources and training available, and the emerging growth of global commerce. . .credit professionals. . .are not generally pushing technology due to budget and time limits." He also said that they must ". . .recognize the need for new and different skill acquisition, to be prepared for the future." On the other hand, he said that credit professionals have the ability to influence, and lead the pace and direction of change. "You must step up to the plate, get outside of your comfort zone, and become a change agent," he said.

Volney Taylor, Dun & Bradstreet's Chairman of the Board, referred to an advertisement he had recently seen in the Harvard Business Review. It read: "You've had it with downsizing and rightsizing, so who do you call when you're ready for growth?" In Taylor's view, the copywriter tapped into a familiar resentment that people face today - that technology is putting constant pressure on all of us to do more work with fewer resources and that opportunities exist for all of us if we use technology wisely. "Our companies have made huge investments in technology in the last 10 to 15 years, but so far, most of the pay off has come from reengineering and not enough from growth, and we all know that downsizing and rightsizing can take you only so far," he said, "You can't succeed long-term by just cutting costs. The key to sustained growth is the continuous generation of profitable revenue growth - that's what we have to make happen." Taylor also recognizes that articulating that idea is easy and getting it done is difficult, but technology is going to be an increasingly important driver of profitable revenue growth for our businesses. He noted, "I'm certain that the business leaders of the future will be those who can use the increasing power and capabilities of computers to help them run their businesses successfully."

The accounting industry has been spectacularly successful in the past 25 years. It has taken its unique understanding of how businesses function - ultimately why those businesses succeed or fail - and they've used that knowledge to create new opportunities for their clients to prosper." Taylor believes there's a parallel there - the credit profession is in the midst of a similar transformation. He said, "We, in the credit profession have our own unique perspective on how businesses function and why they succeed or fail. We have a distinct set of analytical skills, market knowledge and information management expertise. We have a unique understanding of any company's most important asset - its customers - and when you put that knowledge and understanding together with today's technology, I believe you come up with tremendous opportunities for the profit-oriented credit professional." Taylor offered three suggestions for proving the added value of the credit function.

1. Opportunities to take a larger and more aggressive role in the day-to-day business of landing customers and growing the top line. 2. Opportunities to streamline the entire process of receiving and approving orders; shipping products, collecting cash and building the bottom line. 3. Opportunities to move from being a specialist in a narrowly defined company function into becoming a highly visible contributor to growing revenue earnings and shareholder value - a key player who helps make critical sales and marketing decisions. He said, "In short, if we're smart enough, aggressive enough, and above all, if we're open and willing enough to embrace and master technology, then we'll be there. Not on the outskirts of the decision making, but in the middle of the action, proving the value of the credit function's unique knowledge and experience and leveraging the increasing power of technology throughout our organizations." But, how can today's credit professional become a growth driver, considering the pressures of the job? Taylor offered three other suggestions: 1. Embrace technology - master technology, or technology will master you and your worst tears will come true. 2. Remember your roots. Credit was invented as a marketing tool - remember that and make that happen. 3. Communicate, communicate, communicate. . .with your customers, your sales and marketing people and, most importantly, with your managers. Communicate the value the credit function can add to your companies' futures. Taylor is convinced that the ability to locate information and to use it intelligently is the key to success. The information credit commands is an extremely powerful resource; Taylor called it a treasure and, he says, it's under-utilized. Credit's job is to bring that treasure to the surface; to put it on the laptops and desktops of all the people in our companies who can use it. He underscored the importance of making sure your management knows what you're doing to help your colleagues in sales, finance and marketing succeed, saying, ". . .demonstrate your value. Prove to them everyday that the sales prevention department is becoming the sales invention department."

Clearly, these speakers, along with the other instructors in Salt Lake City, recognize that as credit expands and becomes even more important to the company's strategic mission, credit professionals must work more closely with other departments to add value overall. NACM has recognized the changes that have occurred in the profession as a result of reengineering, downsizing and technology. In response, the landscape of continuing educational courses at Credit Congress and throughout the year reflect NACM's commitment to provide opportunities for the development of new skills and support for members who have become more skilled and, therefore, more flexible. Look for even more new seminars, books and continuing education programs in the coming year.

The Expo flourished again this year. The first Expo was held in 1988 with eight exhibitors; in 1997, 65 exhibitors filled the hall, providing more information and resources to attendees. Twelve companies contributed to the success of this year's convention by sponsoring products and events. Experian cosponsored the canvas bags; Predictive Business Decision Systems, Walker Interactive Systems, Data File Services and Chi Cor Information Management sponsored products contained in those bags; Creditek sponsored the entertainment at the Opening Party (as they have done since 1994); Equifax sponsored the Convention Dailies; Graydon America sponsored refreshments in the Expo Hall for the second year running; Experian sponsored Sunday's refreshment break, American Check Management sponsored the coffee service throughout the Convention, and Robert Half International sponsored Monday's refreshment breaks; and the Pyramid Group cosponsored the popular, Beer & Browse Reception in the Expo Hall. The success of this year's Expo proves that, as credit functions more and more in concert with operational management, we discover new strategic partners.

Another first for the Salt Lake Convention, was the addition of three new, nationally sponsored awards. The CBA Designation of Excellence; the CBF Designation of Excellence; and the CCE Designation of Excellence. These were awarded in addition to the National Credit Executive of the Year. The National Honors and Awards Committee took on the hard work of creating these new awards and the criteria for nominees, and were pleased with the number of qualified candidates. In fact, it was so difficult to select only one individual in each category, that the Committee selected two winners in the CBF and CBA Designation of Excellence categories. Other events are highlighted on the following pages.

Honor & Awards

NACM Awards

National Honors

CCE Designation of Excellence: Linda Chernault, CCE, credit manager, Wigwam Mills, Sheboygan, WI.

CBF Designation of Excellence: Dan Mason, CBF, credit manager, Ferguson Enterprises, Beltsville, MD and Vickie Bolinger, CBF, credit manager, Knoxville News-Sentinel, Knoxville.

CBA Designation of Excellence: Mary Anne Boyles, CBA, credit manager, Motionex, Inc., Charlotte and Jackie Lynch, CBA, credit manager, Amcor Architectural, Salt Lake City.

1997 Credit Executive of the Year: Jack Clark, CCE, corporate credit manager, Hughes Supply, Orlando.

Graduate School of Credit & Financial Management

Best Written Team Paper: Ken Minton, CCE, Southdown, Inc., Tampa; Diane Stoffel, Georgia Pacific Corporation, Atlanta; Leighton Williams, CCE, IMC AgriBusiness, Inc., Americus, GA; and Mike Zava, CCE, Tech Data, Clearwater, FL.

Best Team Presentation: George Schnupp, CCE, IMC Agrico Company, Bannockburn, IL; Gerald Uranker, CCE, Archer Daniels Midland Company, Decatur, IL; and Mary Woods, CCE, Dean Foods Company, Franklin Park, IL.

Best Student Award: Ron Wells, CCE, credit executive, Chevron International Oil Company, London

Meyer M. Kahn Memorial Scholarship Award

Pamela Maddock, CBA, credit and collection manager, Power Lighting Products, Inc., El Paso.

NACM Membership Awards

Group One (largest increase in membership): San Diego Wholesale Credit Association.

Group Two (largest increase in membership and positive membership growth for five consecutive years): NACM of Wisconsin.

Group Three (five consecutive years of positive membership growth): Nashville Association of Credit Management and NACM of Texas.

Group Four (gaining the largest membership growth for the past membership year): NACM of Puerto Rico and (maintaining positive membership growth for the past five consecutive years) NACM Greater Cleveland.

CFDD Awards

Distinguished Member Achievement Awards

Class A: Dee Christiansen, CCE, Tacoma Chapter Class B: Janice Purdy, CBF, Denver Chapter Class C: Christine Hollingsworth, Birmingham Chapter

Membership Awards

Class A: CFDD Houston Chapter Class B: Minneapolis/St. Paul Chapter Class C: Wilmington Chapter

NACM Membership Awards

Largest Number: CFDD Seattle Chapter Largest Percentage: CFDD Wichita Chapter

Program Awards

Regular Monthly Meeting Class A: CFDD Houston Chapter Class B: CFDD Rochester Chapter Class C: CFDD Mt. Vernon Chapter

Workshop/Seminar

Class A: CFDD Houston Chapter Class B: CFDD Spokane Chapter Class C: CFDD Birmingham Chapter

Publicity Awards

Class A: CFDD Seattle Chapter Class B: CFDD Denver Chapter Class C: CFDD Birmingham Chapter

Scholarship Awards

Mid Career School: Don Hogsett, Kansas City Chapter

Credit Management Leadership Institute: Don Jeffers, CBF, Houston Chapter

NACM Designation Fees

Cynthia Allen, Omaha Chapter; Tammy Bynum, CBA, Ft. Worth/Dallas Chapter; Terri Downing, Mt. Vernon Chapter; Claudia Ganzevoort, CBA, Grand Rapids Chapter; Cindy Graham, Pittsburgh Chapter; Janis Lucas, CBF, Seattle Chapter; Virginia Mosholder, Dayton Chapter; Debbie Shaffer, CBA, Cleveland Chapter; Dawn Willcox, Wilmington Chapter; Raeann Zeigler, Grand Rapids Chapter

Self Study Courses

Francoise Wass Bowe, CCE, Tulsa Chapter; Carolyn Brown, Ft. Worth/Dallas Chapter; Sharon Campbell, CCE, Ft. Worth/Dallas Chapter; Priscilla Castro, Albuquerque Chapter, Judy Dewey, CCE, Toledo Chapter; Janice Duncan, Kansas City Chapter; David Erickson, Portland Chapter; Todd Fahrenthold, Memphis Chapter; Almeda Fleming, Wichita Chapter; Larry Glenn, CBA, Kansas City Chapter; Patsy Isbell, CBF, Birmingham Chapter; Donna Lancaster, Memphis Chapter; Christine Marchewka, CCE, Kansas City Chapter; Melanie Sensenbrenner, Evansville Chapter; Kim Sizemore, Mt. Vernon Chapter; Peggy Stark, Tacoma Chapter; Catherine Stevens, Evansville Chapter; Kandy Wallace, CBA, Memphis Chapter; Donna Watson-Pistole, CCE, Kansas City Chapter; Rhonda Wilcox, Knoxville Chapter; Carol Wilson, N. Alabama/Florence Chapter

Conference Registrations

Sue Ballard, CBA, Evansville Chapter; Connie Barrett, CBF, Spokane Chapter; Sandra Cain, CCE, Birmingham Chapter; Alice Campbell, CBF, Portland Chapter; Lenore Donnenworth, Tacoma Chapter; Christy Feist, CBA, Grand Rapids Chapter; Patsy Gregory, Richmond Chapter; Brett Hanft, CBA, Portland Chapter; Dottie Haygood, N. Alabama/Florence Chapter; Debra Hollins, CCE, Kansas City Chapter; Tyler Hooker, CCE, Denver Chapter; Jim King, CCE, Pittsburgh Chapter; Dianna Linquist, CBF, Spokane Chapter; Jeffrey O'Banion, CCE, Dayton Chapter; Nancy Scheneman, CBA, Grand Rapids Chapter; Cheryl Wahlberg, CBA, Portland Chapter

Expo Drawing Winners

$500 Drawing Winner

Dennis Adams, CCE, Clover Club Foods, Kaysville, UT

Raffle Winner

Receivables Outsource Management (ROM), an exhibitor at the 101st Credit Credit Congress, picked the winner of their drawing for a 19" color television. Edward J. Martin, National Credit Manager, Sealed Air Corporation, Saddle Brook, NJ, was the lucky winner. The staff at ROM thanks all the participants and looks forward to seeing you next year in New Orleans.

1997-98 NACM Officers and Directors

Chairman R. Craig Seavers, CCE, is manager of financial services at Inland Paperboard & Packaging, Inc. in Indianapolis. Seavers has been a member of NACM for 18 years. In that time he served as president and director of the Indiana Association of Credit Management, spent two years as chairman of the Education Committee and one year as director of NACM-FCIB[R] Corporation, to name a few. Seavers has also served on various committees including the Accreditation, Finance and Budget, Strategic Planning, and Government Affairs Committees.

"My vision is for NACM is to help you reach your fullest potential. This will take the combined efforts of national and the affiliates working together more closely than ever to respond to your need for value added products and services. These products and services will provide you with the tools necessary to find and take advantage of opportunities that will allow you and your companies to meet the ever changing needs of today's and tomorrow's 'global' business environment. The manner we used in the past to prepare for the future was vastly different than the way we prepare for it today and must be vastly different than the way we prepare for it tomorrow."

Chairman-Elect Lloyd N. Riffer, II, CCE, is credit manager of Dolese Bros. Co. in Oklahoma City. Riffer has been a member of NACM for 25 years, elected to the National Board in 1989 as a director from the Southern Region. He was elected vice chairman in 1993 and again in 1995, served two years as chairman of the Honors and Awards Committee and one year as chairman of the Affiliate Liaison Committee, and has been a member of the Resolutions, Membership, Business Credit Reporting, Government Affairs and Budget and Finance Committees.

"My primary goal for NACM this year will be to strengthen the partnership between the national and the local affiliates, which will provide better products and services for the entire membership.

"The future of business credit is very bright, while change marks the future. The importance and recognition of the credit professional and the credit function will continue to increase. I see further downsizing. However, the department will be staffed with highly educated and skilled professionals."

Vice Chairmen

Central Region

Janice J. Welte, CCE, is controller of Ford Tractor of Fargo, Inc. in Fargo, North Dakota.

Eastern Region

Robert J. Sabol, CCE, is corporate credit manager at Buchanan Ingersoll Professional Corporation in Pittsburgh.

Central Region

Robert C. Togtman, CCE, is general manager of William Wrigley, Jr. Company in Chicago.

Southern Region

Jack R. Clark, CCE, is corporate credit manager for Hughes Supply in Orlando.

Eastern Region

Valerie Venable, CCE, is corporate credit manager for Wyman-Gordon Company in North Grafton, MA.

Southern Region

Kyle Dugger, CCE, is corporate credit manager of of the H.T. Hackney Co., in Knoxville.

Western Region

Donald S. Richmond, CCE, is manager of Credit and finance services for Riverside Cement Company in Diamond Bar, CA.

Western Region

Michael A. Allem is vice president of Allied Business Consultants in Salt Lake City.

Directors

Central Region

Donald Gallinat, CCE, is corporate credit manager for Lilly Industries, Inc., in Indianapolis.

Central Region

Ronald E. Mefford, CCE, is director of credit for Cooper Lighting in Elk Grove, IL.

Eastern Region

Ralph J. Rimualdo is vice president for Case Supply in Syracuse, NY.

Western Region

Kenneth H. Merkel is vice president, corporate secretary and credit manager for Layrite Products Company in Spokane.

Western Region

Clint B. Techmeyer, CCE, is general credit manager for Jack B. Parson Companies in Odgen, UT.

Southern Region:

James M. Andrews, CCE, is finance manager for CPS Corporation in Franklin, TN.

Eastern Region:

Mark Tuniewicz, CCE, is director credit and collections for Handleman Company in Troy, MI.

Southern Region:

Vickie Bolinger, CBF, is credit manager for the Knoxville News-Sentinel in Knoxville.

Directors-At-Large

Christopher J. Kramer, CCE, is manager of credit and claims for the C.H. Robinson Company in Eden Prairie, MI.

Gary White, CCE, is corporate credit manager for McCoy, Inc. in Houston, TX.

Richard T. Rehn, CCE, is manager of credit and risk management for the Procter & Gamble Distributing Company in Cincinnati.

Stanley R. DeGroot, CCE, is national financial services manager for WESCO Distribution, Inc. in Phoenix.

Congratulations!

Honorary Advisory Member

James A. McIntyre, CCE, is president of McIntyre Enterprises, LTD in Minneapolis.

Secretarial Council General Chairman

Not pictured:

Connie Cheak is president of NACM South Central Region in Louisville.

Representing FCIB

Not pictured:

Ken Cruz is vice president of business development for Ingersoll-Rand Company in Bethlehem, PA.

Representing CFDD

Marilyn Daugherty is assistant treasurer for the CHI Corporation in Solon, OH.
COPYRIGHT 1997 National Association of Credit Management
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Copyright 1997 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

 
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Title Annotation:includes list of National Association of Credit Management awards and officials
Author:Jeschke, Katherine R.
Publication:Business Credit
Date:Jul 1, 1997
Words:3047
Previous Article:The future is here with electronic funds transfer (EFT).
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