Whether your startup is your first or fiftieth business venture, forging a new business relationship with a bank is rarely the thing on your to-do list that you’re most excited about. But that doesn’t need to be the case – by changing your mindset about the type of role a financial institution can play – banking needn’t be a chore. Consider these suggestions when it comes to choosing which bank to invest with.
Think of Your Bank as a Business Partner
First things first: don’t think of your bank as a necessary evil and instead think of them as a business partner. Once you start thinking of them and treating them the same way you would another supplier or investor, it will make the relationship infinitely easier to manage, at least mentally.
Consider a Smaller Bank
As a startup, your financial needs are very different from a corporation or established independent business, and you need to ensure that your bank understands your needs and is willing to support you. This might mean that choosing a smaller bank might be a better fit for your business that a huge, multinational one. If you’re on the fence about this, do some research into the banking options available in your area and make appointments with banks of different sizes in order to figure out which type of bank might be right for you.
Interview Your Relationship Manager
When you go in for your first banking appointment, you may feel as if all the pressure to impress is on you. But, really, it’s a mutual interview. Yes, the bank will need a lot of information from you, but you also need a lot of information from them; and making sure that you’re comfortable with your future relationship manager should be a major factor when choosing where you ultimately open an account. After all, you’ll work closely with this person, perhaps even turning to them for financial advice and guidance. You need to make sure that not just the bank, but the manager is the right fit.
Share Your Business Plan and Goals
Once you’ve decided which bank to work with and it’s time to get the ball rolling, you should share your business plan, insights about your industry, and your business goals with your relationship manager. Be open and honest during this conversation – they need to completely understand your company and your growth objectives to provide you the best assistance.
As your business grows, your financial needs will too, so establishing a healthy working relationship with your bank is paramount to success. Another key point to consider is communicating any issues, changes in plans, and successes with your relationship manager so that they can better help you steer your company’s money and future investments. So long as you’re treating your bank as a business partner, you should be golden.