Women Eye Opportunities in the Equipment Finance Industry
Coming into equipment finance around 2003, Reid Raykovich found that there were very few women in the field. Attending her first Captive and Vendor Finance conference through ELFA with 300 people, she realized she was only one of three women in the room. Fast forward to current day, Raykovich has seen a great influx of women come into the industry and she herself is now the CEO of the Certified Lease & Finance Professional (CLFP) Foundation, the organization that helps individuals in the industry achieve exceptional standards of professional conduct and technical expertise. She first attained that position in 2012 when she was only 34 years old. From there she has watched change come firsthand. Associations like NEFA, AACFB, and ELFA have also made efforts for women to be more involved and have a seat in leadership positions, according to Raykovich.
“I think that people are now aware that it’s not just having them work at a company, it’s giving them opportunities to go out, so the conference composition is no longer – to give the phrase ‘stale, male, and pale,’” Raykovich said. “It is changing and there’s certainly a lot more women…”
“Women just offer a unique value to the industry,” said Jena Morgan, COO at 360 Equipment Finance. When Morgan was first employed at a working capital provider, only 10% of employees were women. These days she’s a C-level exec for a well-known equipment finance company. Although she has gradually noticed more women being embedded into the industry, she still finds situations where she is the only woman at the executive table.
“A lot of times, I’ve seen women just spin off and start their own business, because they’re not able to move up how they want to,” said Morgan. “And so, I think sometimes that’s part of it, part of why you’re seeing more women in equipment finance is because they’ve spun off and just started their own business; and then they hire women.”
Like Morgan, Raykovich of the CLFP Foundation echoed the possibility of making a change if a ceiling has been reached.
“I think the best advice is if you’re at a company that’s not acknowledging your role as maybe a mother or a woman, move on to another company,” said Raykovich. “The amount of opportunities in this industry is just limitless. You can do any position, anything you want to do and you can find that in this industry if you do it well, you will never leave because you will have a name and people will want to hire you.”Last modified: March 13, 2023
Anaya Vance is a reporter for deBanked. Connect with me on LinkedIn.