One of the last steps before securing a business loan is the business interview. Once you have gathered your documents and developed a business plan, it’s time to sit in front of your potential lenders and tell them about yourself and your goals.
Interviews are a way for lenders to get to know the person that they are loaning money to. It’s one thing to craft a business plan and collect the documents, but presentation matters as well. Here are four tips for preparing for your loan interview.
- Know your business plan inside and out. First, it’s important to know your business plan inside and out. The interview is all about ensuring that you understand the gravity of the money you are asking for and your plan for the money going forward, so if you do not have a good handle on your business plan, you may not do so well in the interview.
- Research your lender. It’s also important to know your lenders. Through online research and word-of-mouth, you can learn a little bit about what kind of businesses your lender prefers and how they conduct the interview process.
- Have any relevant documents on hand. While it may not be necessary, bringing all relevant documents to the interview doesn’t hurt. You may consider bringing your financial records, proof of past employment, another copy of your business plan, and any other business documents you can think of to strengthen your argument for your loan.
- Be confident. Finally, be confident. Don’t hesitate to practice interview questions, wear your favorite suit, get a good night’s rest and have a good breakfast before you go into your interview. It’s important to do whatever it takes to feel confident when you step into the lender’s office.
Not every lender interviews their potential borrowers, but if you are applying for a traditional loan from a bank or credit union, you may be subjected to a loan interview. If you are, make sure you step into the lender’s office with confidence and knowledge, so you have the best chances of acing it!