Sales Rotation: Feb-Jul 2020
My first rotation is nearly over. For the last 5 months I have been lucky enough be welcomed into the Wagga Wagga Rural Bank team. This team is split between the Bendigo office and the Elders office, where I have spent most of my time over the last 5 months in the Elders Wagga Wagga Branch. Regardless of all the interruptions with COVID-19 recently occurring there is certainly no underestimation in saying these last 5 months have been a massive learning curve for myself and the workplace itself.
Throughout the last 5 months, I have been exposed to numerous elements of the Rural Bank banking processes. From new to bank business to long standing clients wishing to increase their loans. But being apart of this graduate program has definitely given me the flexibility to witness how an Agribusiness Relationship Assistant (ARA), Agribusiness Relationship Manager (ARM) and Rural Customer Managers (RCM) all operate on a day to day basis.
Giving me the opportunity to assist with all these roles but also generating a strong overview on how different individuals operate. Through this I have had the ability to sit in on a manager’s loan discussion meeting, then help complete submissions for a property valuation, assist with client reviews, along with helping conduct Farm Management Deposits (FMD’s). This diversity of areas within the business has been something I’ve not only really enjoyed but also has really helped me broaden my understanding of the banking environment.
In regard to working on a diverse range of tasks, undertaking a sales rotation in the Elders Branch also helped me broaden my workplace experience by being immersed in the agricultural banking sector but in the midst of a partnered rural merchandise business. This I believe has been a largely beneficial experience as I can still easily keep up to date with how livestock markets, land values etc. are going as it is all common everyday conservation in this workplace environment.
As my sales rotation was my first stepping stone into the Rural Bank Graduate Program and into the full-time workforce it has been an ongoing learning curve. Adjusting to the elements of working every day, 5 days a week in comparison to working casually and attending university classes. Thus, I have really appreciated the structure and consistency that being in a full-time position with the Rural Bank Graduate Program has provided.
The beginning of my graduate program has flown by, and I am excited to start my next rotation into the Operations team to see how another side of the business operates.
Day in the life
Alarm noise pierces through my eardrums forcing me to get up and get my life together. Stretching out of bed and finding my joggers to go for a quick morning walk.
Shower time and pack my lunch before I make myself breakfast. Watch the quick headlines on the news before I get myself ready and leave the house by 8:15am.
Arrive at work, this is either at the Elders Branch or the Bendigo Bank Business Centre, depending on who I am working with for the week or day. A brief good morning to everyone in the office and to my office to start up the computer. First things first, is to check any new emails so I know what is ahead of me throughout the day and to add anything to my ‘to-do’ list. Some of the emails provide information about current interest rates, online meetings or annual reviews due that need to be checked.
Teatime but everyone else generally drinks coffee. After a quick morning catch up, it’s back to the desk. As I’m still learning all the processes of the bank, I have been working alongside an Agribusiness Manager. This morning I filled in a client’s financials for the last three years, updated their assets and liabilities in order to help complete elements of the review submission. Once completed I then reported back to the Agri Manager. This allows us to both go back through the data and make sure I have collated it all correctly into the Agribusiness Banking System (ABS).
Lunch Time. I’m having a quick early lunch today, as myself and an Agribusiness Manager are visiting clients this afternoon. Normally I would go home for lunch, but I’ll be staying in the office today. Going home for lunch helps refresh myself for the afternoon’s work, gets me out of the office and get a bit of fresh air.
Now to jump in the car with one of the Agribusiness Managers, Jo. This afternoon we are heading to the North of Wagga Wagga to a small farming community which is about an hour’s drive. Car trips with different people can be quite daunting sometimes, however I’ve found that asking different questions, both business and personal can help make the car trip fly.
We’ve arrived at the first client’s property, and after greeting we were shown around the main infrastructure of the property in order to take photos for the property’s valuation. I always find it so interesting going out and visiting clients on their properties, seeing how everyone operates differently, but with the same passion for the agricultural industry.
Hopped back into the car to drive to another client’s property, about 15 minutes away, which also requires a valuation to be completed on its infrastructure. This property is a sheep stud that has been operating for 48 years. The owners are extremely passionate about the quality of their livestock that they produce and wish to continue into the future.
Whist visiting this client we were given a tour in order to take photos of the infrastructure and then sat down and had some afternoon tea to discuss how the business is going, how the recent drought has affected them, and if the bank needs to provide any further assistance. I really enjoy getting to know different clients and their situations and involvement within agriculture. This is probably one of my favourite parts of the job so far, as farmers can be so welcoming.
After a cup of tea and a piece of fruit cake we jumped back in the car and headed back to Wagga Wagga, discussing with the manager along the way what I thought of the client’s operations and their business focus.
Arrive back at Elders, dropping into the office to drop off documents from the day and pick up my bag from the office to finish for the day and head to the gym.
Go to a gym circuit class, which helps me get active after big days of sitting, especially spending each day in the office.
After I finish at the gym, I go home, have a shower, do some washing if needed and catch up with my housemate on her day at work.
I have gotten into the habit of cooking my dinners for the week on a Sunday night, so they are already just need to be heated up, it saves me coming home and figuring out what to cook. I then have dinner, relax and watch tv with my housemate.
Hope into bed and either read a book or just like the rest of our generation scroll through your phone but aim to be asleep by 9:30-10 to get a solid night’s sleep for the next day.
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