Erik Julson, Starion Bank
IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Erik Julson, AVP, business banker, Starion Bank.
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1. What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?
The most rewarding part of my role is watching a customer grow and flourish with the financing that my team was able to provide. Working with multimillion dollar real estate investors or providing an upstart business with an SBA loan — it makes me proud knowing that I helped them reach their goals. The challenging part is reminding customers of potential risks and recommending different scenarios to minimize or remove those risks.
2. Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?
A former manager of mine in Illinois. He paid for his own college, got into commercial banking at a small bank, and was able to work his way up to the Midwest manager of commercial real estate and CMBS markets for Chase Bank. I learned a ton from him and follow his mantra of, “It’s okay to make a mistake, just don’t make it twice.”
3. What has been the high point of your career so far?
Moving to Madison and not knowing a single person in the business community, immersing myself in various organizations, and getting myself in front of way more clients than I expected. It is a true testament to how much activity is going on in Madison. If you are a true professional and can deliver on your promises, you can be very successful.
4. Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?
Always force yourself to try new things, attend new events, join a new group, etc. There is always something you can learn by interacting with other people; at the same time, teach others something new, as well. The easiest way to earn customers and their trust is by telling the truth, whether it’s what they want to hear or not.