3 Questions Featured

8:00pm EDT July 26, 2009

Marcin Bielecki has more than seven years in the banking and financing industry and currently serves as Susquehanna Bank’s vice president and business banker for the Philadelphia region. He also serves as a committee member for Little Smiles Philadelphia and Ronald McDonald House Young Friends board in Camden, N.J. Bielecki resides in the Philadelphia area.

Q. How can a company work with its bank to save money and become more efficient in this economy?

Managing cash under any circumstances is the No. 1 concern of most companies. Under current economic conditions, businesses should look to closely manage three key areas to improve their cash position and lower the cost of borrowing: expenses, revenue and innovation/technology. Expenses: Look at areas of your organization that are successful and use those best practices in other areas of the business that may not be doing as well. Conversely, look at areas of your organization that are not as successful and determine if you can limit your resources. Revenue: Know your competitive landscape and how your company fits within your market. Good management teams look for ways to distinguish themselves in tough times as an industry leader to take advantage of opportunities that may arise from weakened competitors. Innovation/Technology: A company that can use innovation and technology to produce an equal or better product with less cost will improve its profit margin.

Q. How can a business develop a strong relationship with its bank?

Communication is key when it comes to forging a strong relationship with your bank. It is absolutely imperative that your banker understands your business. You should periodically review what your current services are and be open about what you need or want.

Q. What information should a business update its bank on?

A business should keep its bank informed of any changes that may affect the current business, including the personal position of the business owner. You should have regular conversations on short- and long-term goals and review your business plan on a semiannual basis, including financial reports and any changes in products and/or services offered.