“I'm a Banker, in the traditional sense of the job,” states Vice President and Treasury Sales Officer, Michelle Coates. “I sell solutions – not products – and would never sell a client something that they don't need. I believe in integrity.”
When Michelle Coates joined the Howard Bank team 5 months ago, she brought more than 35 years of banking experience with her. She started her career as a drive-in teller and then worked her way up through branch management, credit, credit administration, sales management and on to Treasury Management.
Treasury Management opportunities like the one that Michelle fills for Howard Bank are difficult to find. So she was happy to accept the position and the chance to establish Howard Bank as a bank of choice. “I want to be the clients’ Trusted Advisor, someone that they call because they want my opinion or advice.”
Many clients are also curious about the services that are used by similar companies. Michelle recognizes that, while some clients within each industry may use similar services, each client is wholly unique. “When we pro-actively engage our clients in conversations and listen to their needs, we can offer solutions that add value to their business. We offer a Relationship Team approach to better serve our clients.” A general approach to all clients in a specific industry does not address each individual business’s needs.
“I believe we should work to own each interaction with a client, internal or external, as if this was our business. The bottom line: It is.”
When asked specifically why customers come to Howard Bank, Michelle says, “The Howard Bank choice is the difference of having an account at Howard Bank and having a relationship. It's being able to pick up the phone and speak to a person that is empowered to make a decision or own the issue until a decision is made. It's about seeing your ‘Banker’ in your community, out and about, living and active. We are different.”
In the community, you might find Michelle at an Anne Arundel County Public Library, where she serves as a Director of the library’s Foundation. She also teaches financial education to Women in Recovery and believes that a woman with a strong financial education and an education in general is better prepared to lift up herself and her community.