The “Getting to Know” series is sponsored by Applied Innovation. Applied Innovation is helping to shape the future of accounts receivable management. Product development is driven by customer feedback, agency profitability and compliance and includes platforms addressing client portal access, document management, payment negotiation, Regulation E focused electronic payment authorizations and TCPA communication authorization platforms. Partner with a company who understands your business challenges and evolves to provide cutting edge technology to overcome those challenges and achieve success.
Reading the answers below, how can you not believe in serendipity, fate, or destiny? It seems too naive to just say it was luck that landed Gwen Gullicksen a job at Sentry Credit 10 years ago — especially when you read that she believes she found what she was meant to do when she walked through the doors of the company for the first time. The conviction you feel as you read her answers only serves as more proof that she was meant to be here. Read on to learn more about Gwen, her Spock-like approach to collections, and how not always having a destination in mind can be a good thing.
Name: Gwen Gullicksen
Job Title: Training Manager
Company: Sentry Credit Inc.
Length of Time at Current Company: Almost 10 years (in January 2022)
Length of Time in Industry: Almost 10 years (in January 2022)
How did you get your start in the industry?
A simple referral changed my whole career path. I was cold calling for a fundraising company and it had started to run its course as far as how far I could move up. I had a friend at the time who was a collector at Sentry Credit Inc. She referred me to an orientation that led to a one-on-one and I started less than a week later as a collector. And I have been here ever since.
What is your career highlight so far?
As a collector, it was joining the Million Dollar Club once I was able to generate over $1,000,000 in fees. As a trainer, I get highlights on much more regular basis. Watching the people that I develop feel the same pride I felt as a collector helps
When or how are you most productive?
I am most productive under a deadline.
Which industry professional do you admire most?
I admire the long-haul collectors the most. The people handling the day to day with consumers and have been doing it successfully through all the changes over the years. There is something to be said about a person who can continually find a way to resolve other people’s obligations without causing them any “damage”.
What is one thing you do better than everyone else?
Appealing to the logic of my consumer. I believe that when you truly listen to someone’s situation you have a better ability to overcome their roadblocks with them.
What do you like most about this industry?
It is a daily challenge, regardless of the position, to create workable solutions for those who need/want them.
What is one thing you wish you could change about this industry?
The idea that it is a “lesser” profession. I think if more people understood the service that our industry provides, more of them would want to join in. I try to teach my collectors the value of what they do, creating solutions and keeping the money flowing.
Describe a typical work day.
I don’t really have a typical workday. As the trainer, my days are built out of need, dependent on who needs what from me. The main goal is development so if I do not have a class of new hires, my day could include call calibrations with individuals and/or teams, QA reviews, side by side training/coaching, and material updates.
If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing?
I have no idea. I believe I found what I was meant to do when I walked into Sentry. I find this industry rewarding and challenging. It’s not for everyone, but it is for me.
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What is your guilty pleasure?
Turning off my phone and heading to the mountains. I like to spend my time in the woods wandering with no destination and no expectations.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
Adapt and overcome. When I first started in this industry it was overwhelming how many regulations there were, and how often procedures would change to align with the ever-changing landscape of requirements and restrictions. This one tiny piece of advice has seen me thru all of it and proven to not only be good work advise, but good life advise in general.
What are you currently reading?
“Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” with my daughter
What is one fact you’d like everyone in the industry to know about you?
I only know what I know, by educating myself as I go. Knowledge is power.
Who else would you like to see answer these questions?
Kayde Anderson. She hired me, she trained me, and she is still going strong and working hard everyday.
The “Getting to Know” series is sponsored by Applied Innovation. Applied Innovation is helping to shape the future of accounts receivable management. Product development is driven by customer feedback, agency profitability and compliance and includes platforms addressing client portal access, document management, payment negotiation, Regulation E focused electronic payment authorizations and TCPA communication authorization platforms. Partner with a company who understands your business challenges and evolves to provide cutting edge technology to overcome those challenges and achieve success