Michael Paterson didn’t immediately follow his siblings into the collections world, but everyone is happy that he eventually found his way here. Now a collection manager with Professional Account Services, Paterson has come to love the competitive nature of collections and all that the industry offers. Read on to learn more about Michael, why spontaneous road trips are better than planned ones, and why there is no such thing as failure.
Name: Michael Paterson
Current Role/Job Title: Collection Manager
Company: Professional Account Services, Inc.
Length of time at current company: 20 years
Length of time in industry: 20 years
How did you get your start in the industry?
My siblings have been in the collection industry since the mid ’90s. After suffering a shoulder injury, a career change from commercial construction was in order. In 2003, I moved to Nashville, Tenn. from the suburbs of Washington, D.C., and pursued my career in collections.
What is your career highlight so far?
The position I currently hold is my highlight to this point of my career. I manage and guide a team of our company’s highest-tenured, top-performing collectors.
When or how are you most productive?
I am most productive early in the morning. I enjoy logging in and getting my day started with a cup of coffee before the staff starts reporting to work.
Which industry professional do you admire most?
I have had three different individuals who have all profoundly impacted my collection career — Miller Magness, Faye Tucker, and Dennis Bennett. I have been extremely fortunate to learn the industry from this trio of talented professionals.
What is one thing you do better than everyone else?
One of my strengths has been analyzing KPIs, processes, and workflows to increase proficiency and production.
What do you like most about this industry?
I enjoy the competitive nature of collections.
What is one thing you wish you could change about this industry?
Not all collectors or collection agencies are evil.
If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing?
Commercial Real Estate
Describe a typical work day
My day starts early with reporting and stats to gauge if we need to make any changes to the day’s workflow. Then it’s off to the races responding to emails, chats, attending meetings, and monitoring the collection staff.
What is your guilty pleasure?
I really enjoy spontaneous road trips and the adventures that they bring.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t let your last call dictate what happens on the next.
What are you currently reading?
“To Sell Is Human” – Daniel Pink
What is one fact you’d like everyone in the industry to know about you?
I am a firm believer that it’s only a failure when you don’t learn anything from the experience.
Who else would you like to see answer these questions?
Jason Davis with Professional Account Services Inc.