PPP Lesson Learned: Build a Solid Banking Relationship

Our three surveys on the financial impact of the coronavirus crisis made one insight clear.

Whether it be a global, national or regional bank is not what matters. What matters is that it be with a bank and banker that knows you, that knows your firm, that understands the cash needs and seasonal flows of your business.

We all appreciate the spirit of the PPP program. It saved many PR firms from closing their doors. It saved many executives and employees from losing their jobs. It also taught the PR firm C-Suite about how important it is to build a banking relationship. Whether it be with a major bank, like Chase or Bank of America or Wells Fargo, etc., the key is the relationship with the banker and the bank. Whether it be a local branch of a national or global bank or a community bank, what is critical is that they deliver for you when in need. And now just about every PR firm is in need.

So, ask yourself now if your bank delivered for you.  If they did not, I highly recommend you shop now for a bank that will deliver. Meet with them, share with them your business profile, specialties and seasonal cycles and cash flow needs.

Share with them your experience with your present PPP application. Get their commitment for a line of credit at least equal to your present one and that they will facilitate your application for the next inevitable round of PPP. Do not terminate your banking relationship with your present bank until the new relationship is solidified, in writing.

As we have learned, hundreds of large companies received PPP funding under the program, which was intended to help small firms pay payroll (75%) and overhead (25%), specifically rent.

The spirit of the funding was to help small firms survive. Ask yourself now if your bank delivered for you.  If they did not you should immediately start meeting with local banks and see which bank will commit to support you when cash flow demands a banking partner.