Doug can't wait for the next golf outing at Firestone Country Club!
ACG Member Since: 2000
ACG Involvement: Past Board Member and Vice President of Sponsorship
St. Patrick’s Day was memorable from a very unexpected perspective as Huntington Business Credit (HBC) pivoted to completely working remotely from each of our homes. From a daily operations standpoint, the transition could not have gone smoother with only small annoyances that we have worked through well. HNB and HBC technology allowed us to successfully make this pivot and it has given us great confidence going forward. From a customer standpoint, we have proactively worked with customers to provide additional flexibility and liquidity during the unprecedented challenges during the pandemic. Additionally, we successfully worked with all of our customers that requested access to the SBA PPP loan program, which provided critical SBA loan proceeds and liquidity. We have continued to not only help our customers meet their financing needs, but also have won and closed new business opportunities with new customers.
The financial markets' resiliency and HBC’s ability to pivot so quickly to working remotely has been very encouraging during this unprecedented difficult period. Technology has enabled us to look at how we can work most efficiently and also keep in contact with our customers and prospects.
Like many, we have been able to utilize video conferencing through Microsoft Teams and Zoom to virtually meet with customers and prospects and to network with COIs. It has been very interesting and striking how creatively and quickly the market pivoted to virtual meetings. HBC has relied on this technology to continue to actively prospect for new financing opportunities.
We will see lasting changes. The most obvious ones are the long-term shutdown's effect on retail and office space versus e-commerce and working from home. Travel and leisure markets have been affected greatly in the short-term, but the long-term effects are still unknown. The COVID-19 shutdowns accelerated trends that had already existed and also changed how we think about how we live and work and conduct business.
Relative to winners, and if there is any humor in this, at the top of the list of biggest "winner" surprises has to be the demand for paper products. Technology companies are likely the biggest winners, but that was an accelerated impact that is of little surprise. Those at most risk during the COVID-19 shutdowns and the "losers" during the pandemic have been less surprising; but looking back, the quick, harsh impact on those markets that had been at near full capacity prior to the pandemic is striking.
The only silver lining has been the increased time spent with family. Our increased confidence in technology has allowed us to work remotely successfully. This will be a benefit in the future as we look at work/life balance.
My favorite ACG Cleveland event is the golf outing at Firestone Country Club, given not only the obvious, I love playing golf, but also that I was an instrumental ACG Cleveland Board member that advocated for the demand of the event and was the Firestone CC member that sponsored the initial outing. I take great pride in how successful the golf outing has been for not only ACG Cleveland, but Firestone CC.