The Value of Community Banking
Most business owners need a relationship with their banker. Someone who is connected to the community, understands the business and the market in which the company operates. There is no question being on a first-name basis with a customer trumps an impersonal relationship where a customer is merely a number.
Loudoun County may be in the Washington, DC suburbs, but in many ways each of the jurisdictions that make up Loudoun County has the feel of a small town. It is a nice small town feeling when your banker knows the name of his customers. It also is nice to sit and visit about happenings in town or how your business is doing. It’s great to be a part of the community. It’s even better to have these relationships with fellow Loudoun County residents.
Let’s face it; we all know small businesses create the majority of jobs in the United States. Whether these are startup companies or are established, they depend heavily on local banks for financing. Although small and mid-sized banks control less than one-quarter of all bank assets in the U.S., they account for more than half of all small business lending.
For the community and our local businesses, it’s hard to beat the relationship one finds with a community bank. Mergers and acquisitions can often result in corporate culture changes. Depending on the acquiring bank, contacts customers previously enjoyed may fall victim to corporate bureaucracy. Decisions may no longer be made at the local level by people who live in the community but rather in another part of the country. Community bankers have personal business relationships with customers and have a finger on the pulse of the local economy. With this personal involvement and knowledge of the local business climate, community banks are more likely to be receptive to small business loans.
In a nutshell, community banks are intimately tied to the lifeblood of their communities, and everyone benefits from a prosperous community.
- R. Bruce Gemmill, Senior Vice President, John Marshall Bank
For more information on how a community bank can help you and your business, visit John Marshall Bank at http://www.johnmarshallbank.com
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