Four tips for repaving the path to P-Card success.

How do you take a leadership role and drive Commercial Card program success, especially if you lack card experience? Obtain tips from a pro who has been there and done that. Tiffany Lovelace, CPCP, Kansas City Southern, has taken a P-Card program from stagnant to sensational, including 150% growth in volume over four years! Following are her words, which are part of a three-page series about her journey and card program transformation

Make Use of Your Unique Skills

If you have inherited a program, but lack direct card experience, don’t let that be a barrier to success. Embrace your inherent skill sets and transition them to the world of Commercial Card payments. I had no experience in Commercial Card payments or in the accounts payable arena. What I did possess was the knowledge and fortitude to successfully evaluate and market programs and products. 

Build Strong Relationships

Build strong and consultative relationships with: (1) other organizations within the Commercial Card space, (2) your issuer and (3) internal peers.

Humility is a good thing. While you may have moved mountains in your previous positions, leaning on industry experts, admitting you do not have all the answers, and exerting the willingness to educate yourself will help pave the way for success. 

Break the barriers standing in the way of your success and that of the card program.

Break the barriers standing in the way of your success and that of the card program.

Sync Up Your Strategy

We have a saying in our department: If it makes sense, do it. Our organization was willing to rethink how we utilize Commercial Card products and services. We created program goals and objectives to be in sync with accounts payable, strategic sourcing and treasury, as all three business functions are critical elements, contributing to the overall program success.

Market, Market, Market

My expertise in marketing provided the opportunity for our team and super users to become an extension of our issuer’s account management team. We launched surveys, formed focus groups, and created process maps to unveil issues plaguing our program. With this new-found knowledge, we birthed a new program and crafted targeted messages for our marketing campaign to promote solutions across our organization.

Read the complete series to gain additional tips from Tiffany.


About the Author

Blog post author Lynn Larson, CPCP, is the founder of Recharged Education. With more than 15 years of Commercial Card experience, her mission is to make industry education readily accessible to all. Learn more

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Re-ignite a spark in your card program.

Has your card program become too routine, lacking the attention it deserves? It is never too late to give it a boost. I am sharing simple things you can do, inspired by my mother’s upcoming wedding. Bride and groom are both over 70, but they are throwing one heck of a party for more than 200 guests. Take a cue from this and create similar energy on the job. Your program could benefit from it.

Be Visible/Extend Invitations

Step away from your desk and say hello to cardholders. Ask about their biggest P-Card challenge (it could help drive program improvements). Thank them for their role in the program. Also expand your reach beyond cardholders. Raise awareness of the program and the many benefits by:

  • meeting one-on-one with internal business units, discussing their card usage and opportunities; provide reports with historical data, which also support control efforts per the previous blog post
  • offering 30-minute “lunch and learn” sessions open to the organization at large
  • participating in HR-hosted training for new managers

Maybe it’s time to assemble a new steering committee or advisory group to help guide and improve the program—much like such a team does during the initial implementation stage. 

Give your card program a spark of energy through a blend of promotion and celebration. 

Give your card program a spark of energy through a blend of promotion and celebration. 

Celebrate

Just as a big wedding can be acceptable at any age, there’s no reason why you should not share and celebrate achievements in the workplace. For example, celebrate:

You don’t have to go overboard. In some cases, simply announcing an achievement is a sufficient celebration.

Be Positive

Too often, there’s a negative energy hanging over a card program—overly prohibitive rules (“do not…”), magnifying a minor issue, only reporting what is wrong or could go wrong, etc. Regularly introduce some positivity to retain program interest and excitement.

The results you achieve will be in direct proportion to the effort you apply.
— Denis Waitley

For more information on program management, visit the related webpage. See also how one end-user made marketing a priority


About the Author

Blog post author Lynn Larson, CPCP, is the founder of Recharged Education. With more than 15 years of Commercial Card experience, her mission is to make industry education readily accessible to all. Learn more

Subscribe to the Blog