Name: Rekha Welsh
Job title: Loan Officer, North East Scotland
What’s your role at DSL, and within SMF? My role at DSL is to support the delivery of the Scottish Microfinance Fund, offering support to local businesses who are struggling to secure loans from elsewhere. Building good relationships is essential to being successful in this role and it’s important to understand who you are working with, whether it be clients or intermediaries. When we get a new SMF enquiry, I ensure we offer mentoring throughout the process and aftercare to help businesses stay on track. It’s all about making sure businesses are supported.
What do you enjoy most about your job? Helping businesses achieve their ambitions. Once a loan has been approved, I feel as though I’ve been on a journey with that business and it’s a rewarding feeling when they give an update on progress. The process of meeting new people then nurturing that relationship is vital, which is why the DSL team takes such a hands-on approach.
What’s your background? Before joining DSL Business Finance, I worked for 15 years at Royal Bank of Scotland supporting businesses in Dundee, Angus and Perth. I spent six years in personal banking and nine years in business and commercial banking, starting with business development and then from 2011, I was a business relationship manager responsible after a portfolio of 200 clients. My role varied from supporting companies with funding of up to £500,000 to providing business advice or checking in with clients over a coffee.
What one piece of financial advice would you give business owners? Make sure you know your figures and you have a solid business plan. Have a clear idea of your vision and what you want to achieve from each stage of development and ensure you have suppliers you can trust. Finally, know your competition and do your research to stay ahead of the game!
If you started a business, what would it be? Definitely a coffee shop – I am a foodie! I really enjoy food as well as having a good chat with people.
What’s the most interesting business you’ve ever supported? I supported a distillery producing premium spirits and wasn’t familiar with the distillation process to get the end-product (it takes two weeks to produce one batch!) The business has gone from strength to strength since receiving the loan, and I’m looking forward to visiting the site in the near future.
Tagged With: loan officer; north east; SMF