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Brooke Chandler is a Commercial Lender II, Vice President at Today’s Bank in Springdale, Arkansas.

While my job title may state “Commercial Lender,” one of the perks of working for a community bank is that you get to do a little bit of everything. One day I may be focusing on a large commercial loan, and the next day I may be helping someone finance the construction of their primary residence. Every single day is different, which I love and it allows me to continually expand my knowledge base within lending.

What is the greatest advice you have ever been given?

“It’s not whether you get knocked down, It’s whether you get up.” – Vince Lombardi
No matter a person’s career choice, there will be tough times. We will struggle. We will make mistakes. We will feel like failures. However, those are all moments to learn and grow from in hopes that the struggle won’t be as tough the next time. Admitting you don’t know something or made a mistake is tough, but running from those struggles won’t solve anything. We must learn from those hard times and continue to put one foot in front of the other and take it day-to-day.

What is the most effective daily habit you possess?

The most effective daily habit for myself is to create a to-do list each day and prioritize items on that list. It has taken me a long time to realize that you can’t always get everything finished in one day, but that’s okay. If I focus on specific tasks, I still feel accomplished by the end of the day for the items I was able to complete. Of course, items may get added/rearranged as the day goes on, but it gives me a starting point for each working day.

How has leadership changed in 2021?

Leadership has evolved from primarily face-to-face mentorship to being much more digitalized. Throughout this pandemic, it has been important for individuals to stay home more often and sometimes needing to work from home – whether it’s to quarantine, kids not being able to attend school, etc., there have been many different, unexpected reasons for individuals needing to stay home. Leadership now allows for continued learning and growth – just through a different method. Meetings and conferences are now held via video conferencing such as Zoom or WebEx. Leaders have adapted with the changes and are still accessible and helpful even when not available in person.

The ELS Spotlight is an ongoing series to highlight our Emerging Leaders from around Arkansas.