Your best foot forward

I was catching up on technology news this morning and found a piece about a mobile application for building and sharing resumes. It caters to service industry professionals. This comment from the CEO caught my eye:

“We really want to help these candidates put their best foot forward and provide a great experience to find and apply to jobs using their mobile phones.”

As you can see from the preceding post, I spend a lot of time thinking about the implications of big data for our customers, small businesses and business owners. Put much more simply, I want to make those data available to our customers so they can put their best foot forward in commercial credit evaluations.

Business lending is a classic example of such an evaluation. It’s like building a stellar resume for a job hunt. Just as uses of professional profiles at, say, LinkedIn have grown exponentially, I hope to see economic growth from a well-done business credit profile.

In the case of my profile, I am constantly updating content as well as other aspects of it that disclose more about how I look at the world, a personal philosophy that informs the kinds of businesses I start and my business network. I’m not looking for a job but I can cite to this profile when connecting with prospective investors or business partners or people who I hope will join our team.

In the case of commercial credit, our mission is to support a similar presentation of business credentials that tells various audiences more about why they can trust this business and its team as well as its creditworthiness. It’s a combination of professional presentation and just the right substance to make the case.

Here’s where I felt it was so important to follow up on yesterday’s post. We are helping business owners tap into lots of data, some of which is completely confidential. How much information is presented to which audience is pivotal. In our private beta currently underway, we are supporting three “default” levels of access rights. Simply select which of the three is desired and the profile view changes for those who are invited to that private group.

This function will become more configurable and flexible. Ultimately, it would be great to offer a business user choices among several performance badges they could embed in other places online such as the business website. In effect, it’s a portable trust credential. For sure use it with lenders but also with current and prospective business partners, major customers, investors, and advisers.

Whatever the level of disclosure, you know your business always looks great to viewers.

May your best foot always be forward.

–LaVonne

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