Senior Vice President, Client Services, Orion First Certified Lease & Finance Professional Member, American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers Member, Equipment Leasing and Finance Association Member, National Equipment Finance Association
Jennifer Wood has held many positions at Orion First over the years and seen small ticket commercial finance from all angles. This broad background has allowed her to be more intuitive with clients’ needs and wants, which is imperative at a servicing company.
VISION FOR THE FUTURE:
“I see a future in which men know how to offer critique constructively and tactfully; they know to ask my thoughts and opinions. And we need to help them get there. We can’t promote women in the industry without men alongside us walking the walk.”
Wood’s breadth of experience helps her to do just that and to be strategic in client partnerships on all levels. Her reputation hasn’t been made by any single milestone or project but through the sum of all her client projects. Wood knows how the whole machine works and how to help keep it well-oiled and running smoothly. This mindset allows clients to focus on originations and sales and trust that all aspects of their customer experience is positive and well thought out.
“Jenny’s broad knowledge and experience has had a significant impact on our companies’ success,” Orion First CEO David Schaefer comments. “In working with prospects and clients to scope services, she has a deep understanding of the complexities and nuances of lease and loan operations. Her ability to communicate effectively and find ways to meet our customers’ needs is second to none. Her involvement in the industry and with the ELFA’s Women’s Council will be a plus as she shares and learns with others.”
Wood also believes her experience gives her a unique perspective and stake in the industry as a whole. In addition to her work with the ELFA, she supports the work of LeasePAC and encourages staff and peers to become actively involved as well.
“We can’t sit by and allow changes without our input; we must have a persistent voice in the small business arena,” she says.
Always a passionate advocate, Wood has seen the shape of that advocacy evolve over time, along with her perspective. She continues to look for ways to help the younger generation become more involved in the industry and grow their companies. With the rapid changes commercial finance has gone through in the last ten years, she believes it’s imperative to embrace change and adaptation, especially in technological fields. As a leader, she focuses on listening to younger colleagues who question norms and encourages them to take risks. And, should a particular idea not pan out, Wood is determined to pass on lessons of resilience — to continue to take risks even in the face of fear.
Monitor recently caught up with Tom Slevin, founder and CEO, and Brian Dundon, SVP corporate development at First Financial Equipment Leasing ahead of their company’s acquisition of NorFund, an independent leasing company specializing in capital equipment, solar and alternative energy and vendor finance programs.