Ed Silberstein started L.E.S., LLC Collections in 2016 from his home in New Jersey with his wife, Linda, at 70 years old. Pushed to start the firm by his wife and two daughters, Silberstein had been a social worker and accounts receivable consultant and said he has married both of those skillsets into the empathetic approach to collections he brings to the office everyday. His only regret? Not starting the business sooner.
Starting a collection agency in this day and age is a fairly rare occurrence. The barriers to entry are incredibly high, when you take into account the licensing and compliance requirements. Couple that with being 70 years old and getting a collection agency off the ground may seem like an overwhelming task. But Silberstein, who was profiled in a local newspaper in New Jersey over the weekend, approaches his day with a passion and conviction for collections.
“The life lessons I was taught transfer well into a business mindset: treat everyone — in this case everyone on both sides of the debt-collection process — with dignity, respect and a certain reverence and you efforts will be rewarded and appreciated,” Silberstein says in the Q&A. “I was always taught to go the extra mile, no matter what I was doing, and I still do this today. Everyone that uses L.E.S. LLC comes to know that I leave no stone unturned and finish everything I start.”
Profiles like this one are a great step forward for the ARM industry. They put all of the best qualities associated with running an agency on display for everyone to see. For an industry that is always fighting against a negative stigma and a few bad actors who spoil the industry’s reputation for everyone, outreach efforts like these can go a long way toward helping re-shape the public’s image and perception of the credit and collection industry.