Annual Credit Congress Open for Business in Grapevine, Texas

The 121st Credit Congress & Expo is officially open. The NACM board of directors and credit professionals from around the world were in attendance Monday for the general session at the Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center outside of Dallas.

Attendees were introduced into the world of unmarketing by keynote speaker Scott Stratten. He took them through a tour of the nontraditional approach to marketing and the perceptions surrounding millenials and business/customer relations. Stratten’s presentation included the philosophies behind marketing, selling and branding, using recent examples of “bad press” throughout his show. He described the generation gap as an allowed bias, but showed there is very little actual difference.

Branding in real time can affect a business, but it is important to remember to work with clients and customers, Stratten said. Communication that matters relates back to the medium the customer wants. Companies have been in the news due to this “bad press,” yet they can turn this into a positive interaction with customers with the quality and speed of an apology.

The general session also included NACM’s 2017 honors and awards winners, as follows:

•    Emerging Leader Award: Kevin Stinner, CCE, CCRA, Crop Production Services Inc.
•    CBA Designation of Excellence: Rianne McIntosh, CBA, Summit ESP LLC
•    CBF Designation of Excellence: Julie Anderson, CBF, CCRA, Stoneway Electric Supply Co.
•    CCRA Designation of Excellence: Theresa Lawler, CBF, CCRA, The Chamberlain Group
•    CCE Designation of Excellence: Melissa Kobus, CCE, Walters Wholesale Electric Co.
•    O.D. Credit Executive of Distinction Award: Larry O’Brien, CCE, ICCE, PotashCorp
•    GSCFM Student Leadership Award: Charles Edwards, CCE, Ferguson Enterprises Inc.

Among the other speakers at the morning's session was NACM Economist Chris Kuehl, Ph.D. He shared his thoughts on the Credit Managers' Index, which he joked makes him famous. Many indices are accurate and fast, but not both, Kuehl said. The CMI is both and "it is all because of you," he said, referring to the crowd of credit professionals. "Please participate. It is a valuable tool."

NACM Chairman Jay Snyder, CCE, ICCE, returned to the stage to welcome and thank the board, Stratten and everyone for attending the expo. Breakout sessions will be held through Wednesday, including valuable information on credit applications, bankruptcy, construction credit and cash flow.

To read more about our newest award winners, make sure to pick up the July/August issue of Business Credit magazine. It features a more in-depth profile of O.D. Glaus Award-winner Larry O'Brien.

– Michael Miller, editorial associate

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