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This Is Your Time!

Date:

BY KENNETH C. BATOR

What does the Miracle on Ice 1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Team have to do with the present state of the credit union industry? If there is a time for everything, now is the perfect opportunity for CUs to focus on growth. This formula for success will set your credit union on the path toward greatness. 

For as far back as I can remember, I have been a big sports fan. Baseball, football, basketball, hockey, full-contact checkers… OK, maybe not the last one but definitely the other four. Being a Chicago native, hockey was particularly disappointing this year, with my beloved Blackhawks getting swept out of the first round of the playoffs. Maybe that’s what motivated me to recently watch the movie “Miracle” for the umpteenth time about the 1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Team. Yes, I know it’s a bit campy and everyone already knows how it ends before even seeing the film, but I defy any American to tell me they don’t get a bit riled up over Kurt Russell’s “This is your time!” speech as he is portraying legendary coach, Herb Brooks.

This latest time watching the movie made me think of my work with credit unions and that now really is “your time.” While there are still some lingering effects from the Great Recession, there is a feeling that it’s time for credit unions to concentrate on growth again, rather than controlling expenses like an elderly woman clutching her purse while walking through the worst of neighborhoods. Whether you’re a fan of the Trump administration or not, the odds are there will be less regulation coming our way. This shift will allow executives to concentrate on members rather than compliance every minute of the day. And consumers are still skeptical, if not fostering a bit of healthy dislike, for the big bank brands.

All of that adds up to a potential formula for success for those credit unions that are ready to grasp a tremendous opportunity. Here are a few tips to snatch this chance for greatness:

  • 1) Tell your unique story.

The rise of social media over the past decade or so has not only changed marketing; it’s also changed branding. It’s all about telling your unique story. People today care about who you are as much or more than what you offer. Consumers spend a little extra for shoes when they know the company will also send a pair of shoes to a child in need when they buy them. People buy watches that are a particular color, representing a specific type of cancer to honor a survivor they know or a loved one they lost all too soon. Nowadays, people buy the story before they buy the product or service.

This content is for CU BUSINESS eMagazine , Special Deal: 2 websites , and NEW! The Leadership Team Builder Group Subscription members only.
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