Q&A with Taylor Moseley of General Financial
Taylor Moseley, one of the latest additions to the Fundbox roster of top-notch broker partners, is a proud son of a broker. As a Commercial Finance Broker at General Financial, Taylor works with small business clients around the country. He brings a deep expertise in helping connect small business owners with the financing they need to grow.
In this Q&A, Taylor shares his personal mission and approach to helping clients. We discussed how he ensures repeat business, his reflections on getting started with Fundbox, and a few thoughts about how the financial services industry is changing.
Taylor Moseley, Commercial Finance Broker at GE Financial Services, LLC.
Fundbox: Let’s start with a quick introduction. Tell us a bit about you and your firm.
Taylor Moseley: The company I primarily work for is GE Financial Services, LLC, also known as General Financial. I’ve been in this industry for about six years now. I’m a son of a broker: my father started GE Leasing in 1986.
We provide equipment financing and alternative financing products for the construction industry. While I prefer cranes, vocational vehicles, and directional drilling, I generally don’t say no to any business request. That’s a little bit about me.
Would you say that the majority of your clients are construction and building industry clients?
TM: I would say the majority of them are. I do the occasional restaurant here and there. Manufacturing is big for us right now, too. With construction, I dive deep into segmentation, I think segmentation is key to success. Knowing your products and how they affect your clients gives you a competitive edge in our industry.
When I’m talking to customers, I’m not just trying to sell them. I want to understand how they’re making money, how the equipment’s going to work for them, what their invoicing process is like. Put me in your shoes so I can walk through the entire start-to-finish of your business. The better I know their business, the better I can align them with products that are going to help propel their business into the future.
Construction is a fun industry, and I like it because every company is different. No business is the same.
That’s what drives me out of the bed in the morning: learning all the different ways that people make money and how I may help them improve their business and improve their cash flow.
Would you say that’s your favorite part of the job?
TM: Problem-solving is the best part, absolutely. It’s rewarding when a customer comes to me through a vendor or a dealer and says, “I want to buy a dozer.” I start to ask them why they want the dozer. They say they need more money, and I say, “Okay, how do you get paid?” They say, “Well, I get paid net-30 and right now, we’re pushing net-60. If I get another dozer, I can make more money and get caught up.” I say, “Ah, you don’t really need a dozer, you need to solve your delay in accounts receivable. Let’s address this together and evaluate how these may affect your bottom line.”
Then once we have that conversation, if they’re willing to listen, the light bulb goes off for them: “Taylor really cares about our business. He’s solved a problem that I didn’t even see that was there and gave me the option of how to move forward and solve that hole.” I think that’s something that separates allows me to stand out in our industry.
The value of long-term relationships
Why should small businesses work with you and General Financial instead of somebody else or instead of going it alone? It sounds like they get a lot more than just access to funds if they work with you.
TM: Yes. They’re going to get somebody who will pick up the phone and who cares about their business long-term.
I don’t want to just finance one piece of equipment for them. Often times, I’ll have great credit customers come to me and want to finance a piece of equipment. I tell them, “Look, my rates are going to be higher. You need to go to your bank and here’s how you can best approach it.”
I’ll take the time to explain how they could go about getting that loan from their bank where they may have previously been denied, and shape it so that the bank can fully understand the request, and hopefully approve it.
Nobody that I’ve met really does that. What I’m doing is, I’m not turning away business, I’m looking for that long-term relationship. I want that customer to remember that I was straight up, truthful, and 100% transparent with them and call me back next time. Sometimes, it’s better to lose one and win more along the way. Referrals go a long way. I rather have that, than to make a quick buck and never talk to them again.
Has your strategy of really trying to work with clients for the long term been working out positively? Do you see people coming back for a second or a third time when they need help?
TM: Always. They come back for more and then they tell their friends, the people that they’re working for, the contractors, and referrals. It really eliminates a lot of the pressure to go out and find more business when you know that you have a great portfolio that looks to you for advice, and that decreases marketing cost. You’re on the top of their mind, they’re bringing you business because they have a relationship with you.
When it comes to these business owners that you’re working with, are there specific challenges that come up again and again?
TM: A lot of small business owners don’t understand business credit. Everybody understands their credit score, but as a broker in the industry, you have to be able to explain to them, “Yes, you have a 750 credit score but we’re not loaning on your credit score. We’re loaning on the business’s ability to repay.”
What I find particularly interesting is that these people that are operating these businesses, they’re in the daily grind of trying to make money, make payroll, and try new things, they don’t understand that there’s a whole business side to their credit. How does the Dun & Bradstreet report look, are they paying their trades? Do they have an 800 number? Do they have a brick and mortar [store]?
Enlightening those business owners of this whole new side of credit they didn’t understand before is really rewarding.
Fundbox first impressions
You started working with Fundbox recently, right? Do you have anything to share about your experience so far?
TM: Onboarding with Fundbox was great. Porter, I met him in person, he was very knowledgeable. It was nice to speak to somebody who understood exactly what I was trying to accomplish. I asked a lot of very complicated questions, and the onboarding was fast and simple.
Fundbox, in general, has been great. We’ve hired a new salesperson just to handle Fundbox itself.
By the way, Fundbox supplied me with all the tools in my fingertips as soon as I signed up. That was incredible. I will say that the “wow” moment for Fundbox, for me, was this: I had a client who called me, and we were solving multiple problems. I said, “I have something new, let’s try this out.” I literally walked him through signing up for Fundbox on the phone, and within five minutes, he had access to $45,000. He had the money the next day.
There’s nowhere in the industry that you can do that without getting killed, in terms of interest rate and fees. The paperless process, the automated processing, the instant decisions, the portal, everything is perfect.
When that happened and the client said, “I’m approved” and he took [the funds he needed], in less than five minutes on the phone…that was the “wow” moment for me. I said, “This is a very powerful tool.” We need to harness this power.
How technology is changing lending
One of the ways that we’re able to do things so quickly is because of our machine learning risk models, removing some human intervention from the process. Do you have any thoughts in general about the ways that machine learning, artificial intelligence, or other technological innovations are going to continue to affect the future of lending?
TM: Yes: smart contracts. I think our industry, in particular, is behind on realizing how close we are to the future of commercial financing. The whole industry landscape is changing. I think, as a broker and as a funding source, whatever you are, if you’re not looking into smart contracts, machine learning, and AI because you think it’s just a sci-fi story, you’re going to be in for a big surprise.
When you say smart contracts, can you explain what that means?
TM: Take any physical equipment contract that you would normally sign or DocuSign, and program that into software that’s dynamic. That’s a smart contract.
Soon, most of the equipment and lending world will get to using smart contracts. The question is, are you going to be ready for it or not? The smart contract is essentially what you have accomplished with your [Fundbox] portal. Machine learning, automating reading the bank statements, and certain credit parameters, whatever your risk model is, and you’re spitting out an assessment.
You’re never going to totally replace the need for people, there’s always that need for personal attention to every client. But the more you can automate the tedious tasks, the more time you can spend with the customer. That’s what’s important, your relationships.
Right. I think most people wouldn’t want to replace the personal attention. We have automated key things in our business, but not everything. For example, our customer support, we think it’s really important to have helpful human beings who are local and available to talk on the phone, and people appreciate that because there are some things that you just need human-to-human communication to get done.
TM: Absolutely. I agree with you 100%. That’s another thing I love about Fundbox: If I have a question or a need, Porter or Antonios is one call away. While they may not answer my call every single time that I call, I’m guaranteed to get a call back that day or the next day and have that human interaction.
That’s really important. As our industry becomes more automated and faster, that we don’t lose that human touch.
TM: That’s why we get paid the big bucks.
Absolutely. Thanks a lot for the kind words and all your insights, Taylor. Is there anything else that you’d like to mention?
TM: I appreciate you, thanks for giving me the stage and the opportunity.
Lastly, I would like to mention the American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers, the number one association for Commercial Finance professionals to network and provide the tools and resources necessary to grow.