What to do when your credit union brand takes a beating

first_imgOn a recent trip for a speaking engagement about transformational leadership, I decided to drive rather than fly. I left extra-early that morning to make it to the hotel in plenty of time for dinner, to prep for the presentation and to catch game three of divisional baseball playoff series between the Toronto Blue Jays and my beloved Texas Rangers.I stay at the same chain of hotels whenever possible. I know what I’m getting. A clean and comfortable room, breakfast in the morning and a reasonable price. This all works when that brand promise from the hotel delivers. Why when it doesn’t, the brand takes a beating.That beating happened on this trip. The front desk worker did not greet me as I came in (in fact, it was obvious he was far more interested in the football game playing in the lobby that in my arrival). He did not welcome me as a rewards card member. And he showed little to no interest in the fact that their cable provider didn’t offer FS1 as a channel (where the game was being televised) nor that the hotel Internet signal was so weak that I couldn’t stream it to my laptop.All this may sound petty. No, I didn’t expect the front desk clerk to magically become a cable repairman or somehow acquire the IT skills necessary to boost the Internet connection. But I did expect him to show enough care and concern to make me feel like a valued customer. He didn’t and the brand promise of the hotel chain was broken.At credit unions, we also make brand promises. They vary from place to place. For example, your brand promise might be quick turnaround times on loan decisions. Or the relationship-building experience your staff offers. Or close ties to the community you serve. Whatever the case, if you fail to live up to the brand promise, brand damage occurs. While not always irreparable, it will certainly cost you in the long run.That is why it is so critically important for credit unions to adhere to the brand promises they make to members. All it takes is one bad day or sub-par performance from any employee to risk brand damage. Ongoing and relevant brand training for your staff is a powerful way to help avoid this scenario. Another is a vibrant and energetic onboarding program both for new employees and existing employees at various times during their tenure at your credit union. Finally, another solution to avoiding brand promise damage is to rely on your executive management team to live the brand every day in front of staff. They will see this behavior and its effect will trickle-down to their daily job performance once they realize it is important to the individuals that lead the credit union.You cannot simply launch the brand, introduce it to your staff and then expect them to carry it forward ad infinitum. You must reinforce your unique credit union brand with your staff on a daily basis, at every opportunity. I have a feeling the young man working the front desk at the hotel that night was not overly-familiar (or concerned) with their brand promise. I was tempted to point it out to him — after all, it was printed on the little sleeve of paper in which he places my door keycard. However, at that point I figured out how to watch the game on my phone and the evening was saved.Playoff Baseball – 1Hotel Brand Promise – 0How does your credit union brand promise score? Only you know for sure. 49SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Mark Arnold Mark Arnold is an acclaimed speaker, brand expert and strategic planner helping businesses such as credit unions and banks achieve their goals with strategic marketing insights and energized training. Mark … Web: www.markarnold.com Detailslast_img read more

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NextGen know-how: Take responsibility for your life

first_img 13SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr I recently had the opportunity to attend a week-long conference with Jack Canfield, co-author of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and The Success Principles: How to Get From Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. The event was focused on helping people break through to higher levels of success.The first principle of success Jack introduced was “Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life.” Most of us have been conditioned to blame something or someone outside of ourselves for the parts of our life we don’t like. But the truth is, there is only one person who is responsible for the quality of life you live: you.When Jack first introduced this success principle, my immediate thought was that I didn’t have room for improvement. I take responsibility for my life. I don’t blame others for my outcomes. But as we got deeper into the topic, I realized there are places where excuses linger and I don’t take full responsibility. continue reading »last_img read more

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New feature on the Foundation’s interactive Impact Map

first_imgAt the beginning of the year, we debuted an Impact Map to highlight the Foundation’s programs, projects, and Credit Union Development Educators (CUDEs) in each state.  The Impact Map displays to credit unions and credit union professionals what their state is involved in when it comes to Foundation programs and initiatives, such as Biz Kid$, Experiential Learning programs, Non-Prime Auto Lending, Development Education (DE) projects and participants, and more.We have just released the second phase of the Impact Map, which is a “by program” feature to offer a different way to showcase the impact we are having across the United States. When viewing our Impact Map, you can now choose which way you would like to view how we are making a difference – either by state or by program.The “Browse by program” feature provides an interactive way to see which states are using specific Foundation programs, grants, or training’s.  For example, if a credit union organization wanted to see which states have participated in the Enhanced FiCEP Program, they could click “Financial Counseling” on the right, and see the highlighted states on the map.  Users can also click the “read more” below the map to learn more information about Financial Counseling. continue reading » 4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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From Apple Pay to Zelle: 7 trends shaking up the future of payments

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » Here’s everything you need to know about payments in the year to come — from digital wallets and mobile P2P to Venmo, Zelle, and Apple Pay.Few industries have been rocked by digital disruption as much as banking. This is particularly evident in the payments space, where dominant incumbents must contend with a dizzying onslaught of challenges.According to a report from Accenture, new payment solutions from digital competitors, fintechs and challenger banks are now “threatening the very existence of traditional players.”And despite the plethora of options consumers have today, they consciously think about payments less than they have in the past. As Accenture explains, payments in the digital age are quickly becoming “invisible.” For example, Accenture cites voice-enabled solutions powered by natural language processing as an emerging trend that could not only upend traditional physical payments but even newer mobile payment tools. Given the popularity of Alexa and its ilk, that’s not at all far-fetched.last_img read more

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Doing the right thing

first_img continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr In her 25 years with Capital Credit Union in Green Bay, Wis., Mary Kamps has helped the credit union grow to $1.4 billion from $70 million in assets. She played a key role in serving on the merger team when Capital Credit Union and Pioneer Credit Union merged in 2014 to create the billion-dollar institution.At the same time, both were undergoing a core conversion.Kamps’ job was to keep the front-line staff up to date, trained, and prepared to serve members during the transition.“It was about developing a training plan for what used to be 175 employees and was now 360,” Kamps recalls. “At the same time, we had to determine how the new core fit our business needs, along with the policies and procedures of two different credit unions. We came up with a plan, and put the pieces in place through a train-the-trainer program.”last_img read more

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How to stay away from debt in 2020

first_imgHave you ever done a Facebook cleanse, where you start removing these “friends” that you don’t talk to anymore or only met one time at a party? It’s an annual activity for me. Well this year, you need to remove someone from your life that definitely isn’t your friend. It’s name is debt. 2020 is the year to send debt packing! Debt isn’t always evil (if you’ve ever bought a house, you’ve gone into debt). But there is a lot of evil debt. Sometimes we just get in a bad habit of buying stuff. No matter how you’ve acquired your debt, it’s time to get free of it and kiss it goodbye. Here are a few ways you can kick the habit of building up debt…Forget about that extra cash: It’s the first of the year, so there’s a chance you’re starting off the new year with a pay raise. If you’re finding yourself in this situation, do something with that extra cash before you can spend it on frivolous things. Set your budget as if you’re still making what you made last year. You can send that extra cash into your 401k or your emergency fund, or make a new savings account that will help you save for trips or fun things you’d normally put on a credit card.  Even if you only got a small raise, it’ll add up over time.Set goals and stick to them: Money goals are key to keeping your finances on track. Your budget is a big money goal. It shouldn’t be a difficult goal to accomplish. You know how much you make, so it’s time to map out your monthly bills and stick to your spending allowances. Automating bills and savings deposits is one way you can help yourself stay on track.Let your credit card collect dust: Of all the cards in your wallet, your credit card should be the one you reach for least often. If you’d like to see your debt dwindle down to nothing, you’re going to have to start telling yourself no. It’s fun to buy stuff, but how often are those things really worth having more debt over? 106SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John Pettit John Pettit is the Managing Editor for CUInsight.com. John manages the content on the site, including current news, editorial, press releases, jobs and events. He keeps the credit union … Web: www.cuinsight.com Detailslast_img read more

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House passes Phase 3 coronavirus relief

first_img continue reading » Following Senate passage earlier this week, the House today passed the Phase 3 coronavirus relief package – the CARES Act – which includes several provisions for which NAFCU had advocated. The president is expected to sign it.NAFCU aggressively lobbied Capitol Hill throughout negotiations on the bill to ensure credit unions have the relief they need to serve members and communities as the coronavirus introduces challenges.The final legislation includes several wins for credit unions, including:flexibility for the NCUA in dealing with troubled debt restructurings (TDRs);an adjustment to the definition of eligible institutions to ensure credit unions are eligible for new Small Business Administration (SBA) programs; ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Berger to Americans: Stand together during coronavirus pandemic

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » “The challenges that lay ahead are no match for the will and perseverance of the American spirit. This belief has never been truer than it is today,” wrote NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger in an editorial published in CEO World.As the coronavirus outbreak continues to impact our economy and the everyday lives of the American people, Berger penned an opinion piece to encourage our nation to remain united and stand together during these uncertain times.“It is, like the pandemics before it, threatening our nation and the social fabric of our communities as we have come to know them,” wrote Berger. “[But] with this bad can come a lot of good. Everyone – and I mean everyone – has a part to play in making sure we get through this and that we come out better.”Berger went on to encourage readers to soldier on and be the best versions of themselves for their fellow Americans. “Our mission right now is to do our best, to be our best, and to make the sacrifices necessary. Because, as the saying goes, ‘a rising tide lifts all boats,’” said Berger.last_img read more

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Letter to the Editor: We can’t wait: Now is the time to support our local businesses

first_imgRocky Mountains 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr To the Editor:I’m writing today to advocate for quick action on behalf of the heroes of our American economy, small and local businesses. As the President & CEO of Canvas Credit Union, we serve over 4,000 business members across Colorado. We exist to serve our members and right now these organizations are experiencing acute frustration and pain. As has been well publicized, the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program’s (aka the PPP Loan) funding was exhausted yesterday.I’m one person seeing the pain of many. In this unprecedented time, there are many things we cannot control. What we can control is how we respond. Now is the time to respond and to respond quickly.Even before this funding issue arose, our credit union was not able to serve our business members through this program. To give a bit of background, as part of the CARES Act, the U.S. Government allocated $349,000,000,000 of stimulus funds for businesses with up to 500 employees to help soften the economic impacts of COVID-19. I believe that our leaders created this program to help the backbone of our economy, our small business owners. The execution of that program has been challenging for some financial institutions including Canvas, but most importantly for business owners and their employees.As the bill was drafted, and ultimately enacted into law, the government appointed the financial institutions of the U.S. to act as their agents to receive and process applications and disburse funds for PPP Loans. The first set of draft rules for this program were published just hours before the SBA began directing businesses to apply with banks and credit unions, unfortunately putting financial institutions like Canvas in a spot where we lacked necessary information. Small businesses were directed by the SBA to begin applying for loans at credit unions and community banks, even though those institutions didn’t have access to the critical information and systems they needed to be able to process these loans. For example, Canvas only received access to the SBA’s online portal this week, just before funding for the program ran out, and the SBA has still not issued a final rule or all of the necessary details on how these loans will be closed and funded. As we move forward, ensuring the SBA can handle the volume of requests will be critical.There are moments in life when patience matters. This is not that time. I want to encourage our leaders in Congress and at the Small Business Administration to be impatient and act expediently. This is not about loans. It’s about caring for the employees of these businesses. It’s about putting food on their tables. It’s about these owners living up to their promises they’ve made to their customers. It’s about seeing the American dream flourish. We need to not only listen, but act.Credit unions are the first responders of financial services. We are ready to stand with the businesses we serve. We need funding and the guidance to put our support in motion through the PPP. We can’t do that alone and I’m calling for the leaders of our country to demand action.In a time when so much is uncertain, we can act to bring peace of mind. We can provide more support and stand with those that have made our communities great. At Canvas, we will not stop working to find ways to support our business community. Serving Colorado small businesses is what we are all about. Until we have answers and new funding, we are offering other options including loan payment deferments for our business members.To our more than 4,000 business members, we stand with you. You matter. We hear you. We won’t stop working to serve you.To members of Congress and the Small Business Administration, please stand with me and with so many business owners and their employees. Show your impatience for solutions that matter and act now. I am optimistic that the spirit of this great country to take extraordinary action in the face of challenge will inspire us in this moment to work together.As I always say, the best is yet to come.Be well,Todd MarksberryPresident/CEO, Canvas Credit UnionAbout Canvas Credit Union (http://canvas.org):Canvas Credit Union (Formerly Public Service Credit Union) is a safe and insured financial institution with over $2.7 billion in assets and more than 250,000 members. Canvas provides a full array of financial products and services, including savings, checking, loans, mortgages, and online and mobile options. Serving Colorado communities for more than 80 years, Canvas currently has 29 branches.last_img read more

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How to save a little extra during crazy times

first_imgIt’s a tough time for a lot of Americans right now. Some out-of-work individuals are into their 3rd month of being without a paycheck. Hopefully the stimulus checks and PPP Loans have helped put some cash in everyone’s pockets, especially those that need it the most. But, being stuck in quarantine isn’t all bad. Introverts are probably in hog heaven. (What is hog heaven? If you have any insight, tell me about it in the comments. I really want to know.) The one advantage of being at home is that you’re not out-and-about spending money like you probably used to. It’s bad for the economy, but it’s good for your wallet. If you’ve got a good handle on your budget, you should take cash you’d usually be spending and put it towards retirement or your emergency fund. And if you’re looking for a few extra ways to save, here are three to consider…Let your car help (because it’s doing a lot of sitting): You’re not using your car much these days. And it’s not just gas stations that have noticed. Insurance companies have noticed as well. A lot of companies have already started giving discounts on premiums because they’re not having to pay out claims at the same rate as before the COVID-19 crisis. GEICO, for instance, is giving a 15% policy credit to all customers at the time of their next policy renewal. Not all companies are giving out discounts without the customer asking first, so find out what your insurance company is doing and take advantage. Every little bit helps.Cancel unused subscriptions: It’s hard to come to terms with getting rid of subscriptions. I haven’t been using my Netflix lately, but it’s hard to let it go. I bought a year of both Disney+ and The Athletic and haven’t really taken advantage of either one of them. I watched The Mandalorian (of course), and read tons of articles about my Tigers during college football season, but haven’t really used either subscription in the last few months. I’d be willing to bet you have similar subscriptions that you probably don’t think much about. It may only seem like 5-10 bucks a month, but cancel one or two and that’s a couple hundred bucks a year.Stop buying the most expensive version of everything: I’m just going to say this up front . . . there’s no way I’m replacing Diet Dr. Pepper with Food Lion’s Diet Dr. Perky. It’s just not going to happen. But everything on your shopping list isn’t as big of a deal. If you don’t believe me, buy the store brand sliced or shredded cheese the next time you’re at the grocery store. It’s just as good as Sargento or Kraft. Don’t @ me. If you don’t know what that means, ask your kids. 173SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John Pettit John Pettit is the Managing Editor for CUInsight.com. John manages the content on the site, including current news, editorial, press releases, jobs and events. He keeps the credit union … Web: www.cuinsight.com Detailslast_img read more

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