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Jul 01 2011
Credit Congress A Must--Reasons to Plan For 2012 Credit Congress in Dallas, TX
DeAnna Leahy, CCE, Sunroc Corp

Nashville - the Music City, NACM's 115 Credit Congress & Exposition

NACM Credit Congress is the premier educational and networking event for anyone working in credit. Learning new skills or improving skills keeps all professionals at the top of their field, and the NACM Credit Congress provides a wide range of educational development programs tailored to every level of experience-from the career credit professional to the business credit novice. I look forward to this great opportunity each year.

It is a great way to stay up on current topics, listen to fabulous speakers, learn from the knowledgeable presenters as well as networking with peers from all over the country. Attending the NACM Credit Congress is also a great way to earn CCE recertification points!

It was amazing to me to see the beautiful gardens of the Gaylord Opryland Resort. Nashville should be applauded for demonstrating that it is a city of resilience in the wake of last year's massive and damaging flooding on the Cumberland River that left the Grand Old Opry and the Gaylord Opryland Resort, host of this year's NACM Credit Congress, submerged. The large atriums and lush landscaping of the indoor gardens, cascading waterfalls and indoor river was truly a wonderful setting for this year's conference.

In the General Session, the Honors and Awards Committee recognized members who went above and beyond in several categories. The 2011 award winners who were recognized at the General Session at the Gaylord Opryland resort were:

     O.D. Glaus Credit Executive of Distinction Award: Mike "Pooch" Puccinelli

     Chairman Award: Phyllis Truitt, CCE

     CCE Designation of Excellence: Sheila Romes, CCE

     CBF Designation of Excellence: Don Kruggel, CBF

Toni Drake, CCE, TRM Financial Services, Inc. was named the 2012 Chairman Elect.

The General Session speaker was author and motivational speaker, Tom Flick, featured in the book Speaking of Success. Flick reflected on stories from his days as an NFL quarterback, including a game where he found himself face-to-face with feared Pittsburgh Steelers great Jack Lambert. He was still a backup at the time, and Flick recalled that the Hall of Fame linebacker pointed at him and sarcastically asked him "Who are you?" during a play. Later he thought about that question "who was he?" He still uses that question to evaluate himself and strive to be better.

During Credit Congress' Super Session, NACM proudly unveiled the National Trade Credit Report, featuring credit scores and days beyond terms statistics as a new tool designed to provide specific trade payment data drawn from a database of more than seven million trade lines.

The Super Session Speaker, Joe Calloway, author of the best-seller "Becoming a Category of One" used Nashville's own Grand Ole Opry as an example of a business reinventing itself. While that was by necessity as an aftermath of massive flooding, Calloway said that more businesses and professionals should take an opportunity to really look at things from their most basic level and try to redefine and differentiate yourself as an individual in a marketplace of sameness.

This is the second year that Executive Exchange Sessions were offered where attendees from all industries could gather for high-level discussions on certain skill sets and timely topics focusing on building and construction, collections, credit management, international credit, and legal issues. During the Executive Exchange session on collections, it was noted that using the web and various social media platforms has proven very helpful in the collection of information. NACM Intermountain's own Scott Lee was the Moderator in this session. Scott noted his collections people use social media as well as Google searches to find those debtors who don't want to be found because they don't want to or aren't able to pay. He said, "It's amazing what you can find out simply from what people post themselves."

This year's NACM Credit Congress had several bankruptcy sessions offering both practical and academic looks at how creditors can stay ahead of their struggling debtors. Preference issues were addressed during these legal-focused sessions.

Some of the education sessions included an informative two part "Bulletproofing Your Credit Department," "How to Collect the Debt and Keep the Customer," and "Leadership vs. Managership" just to name a few.

At NACM's booth at the Expo, representatives from national and affiliate offices were available to answer questions about NACM's many educational offerings. They answered questions about upcoming educational opportunities as well as any questions about NACM's certification program.

Of course I cannot fail to mention the Closing Night Party! The hotly anticipated cruise prizes donated by United Tranz*Actions went to Jay Woulfe, CCE of Trelleborg Automotive USA, Inc. and Elizabeth Chamorro CICP of Yaskawa America, Inc. The Closing Night Party band was the talented LoCash Cowboys who played songs ranging from country music to rock, and artists from Prince to Motley Crue. A good time was had by all!

The NACM Credit Congress remains the most complete educational and networking experience for credit professionals of all ranks. Everyone should plan on joining me for the 2012 NACM Credit Congress and Expo June 10 - June 13, 2012, in Dallas Texas!