on it now, the time spent in operations
and risk was fundamental to any success
I have in business development.
What role has mentoring played in your
In addition to the traditional support
relationships family, friends, colleagues,
etc., mentors can provide you with a
unique perspective. They are a key part
of an individual’s development. I have
had a number of mentors throughout my
career, some from within the industry and
some from outside the industry. I think the
most important thing, is to ensure there
is a good fit between mentor and mentee
as this ensures everyone gets the desired
results of a truly symbiotic relationship.
It is important to be honest in what you
are looking to get from the relationship.
Agree to a framework, and do not commit
to it unless you have the time to work with
the person. As my career has developed, it
has provided me with the opportunity to
mentor a number of our new graduates
globally. It has been a great experience and
something I look forward to continuing.
What is the best professional advice you
have been given and how have you implemented it?
Younger professionals enter the work
force thinking: we can conquer the
world in a day. When I joined Bibby
Financial Services under the graduate
program eleven years ago, I always knew
I wanted to end up in business development. I was in such a rush to get there!
The best piece of professional advice I
received very early on in my career was,
to “slow down and learn the business
first, as it will provide you the background knowledge needed to be more
effective.” I initially spent close to three
years in operations. Once I had developed a firm understanding of the operations side of the business, I was ready
to move into the risk department. As I
would later learn firsthand, the greatest
place to absorb a relevant foundation
of commercial finance is working on
the risk team. They see the opportunities coming in the form of new business
and see the variety of exit scenarios. I
worked in risk for about twelve months.
During this time, I got a 360-degree view
of our business and industry, working
on everything from collect-outs to new
business approvals and deal structuring. After nearly four years in operations
and risk, I finally felt ready to move into
business development. Reflecting back
lients and their advisors work with James Poston to structure and implement
flexible working capital solutions for their businesses. They appreciate his
ability to quickly grasp a comprehensive understanding of their unique situ-
ations and needs. James is Bibby Financial Services’ Executive Vice Presi-
dent Business Development. He is responsible for overseeing the sales and
marketing strategy for Canada. James is a product expert in receivables financing,
trade finance including purchase order financing, and asset-based lending.
James joined the team eleven years ago as a member of the graduate entry program. James’ experience in all aspects of the business allows for quick responses to
a company’s needs. James has been a top performer in all aspects of the business
and has been the number one sales manager for the past four years across North
James completed a degree in economics and political economy at McGill
University where he was also a member of the varsity football team. While working at Bibby, James also completed his Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA)
JAMES POSTON, CPA, CMA
EVP, Business Development –
Bibby Financial Services (Canada) Inc.
Is there a piece of professional advice that
you would give yourself if you could go
back in time?
ne thing someone once told
me that resonated was,
there is a difference between
hearing someone and
actually listening to them.
I would say very early on in
my career I heard a lot of what people
were saying, but did not listen to them
and, in certain instances, I really wish I
had. Listening is a good trait to have as a
business leader; the more effective you
become as a listener, the more adept you
will be at understanding the issues and
addressing concerns in the commercial
finance industry. It is important to sleep
on weighty issues and subjects to avoid
an emotional response you may later
regret. Carefully think of your response
to avoid emotional responses not based
on fact or relevance which can impact
your personal brand.