Nine Credit Union Industry Experts Tell Us What To Watch For In 2012

I like to say that one of a visionary leader’s most important functions is seeing over the horizon and recognizing opportunities and threats before anyone else does, and then shaping the strategy and tactics of the organization accordingly.

So for our year-end blog post I asked our Preferred Partners to tell us what they see coming over the horizon, from their perspective, that credit union executives need to be focused on and/or prepared for as we head into 2012.  Here is what a few of them said —

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Cementing Gains From Bank Transfer Day With Innovative Onboarding

One of my favorite books about how the Internet and digital technologies have changed the way we do business is ‘Blur: The Speed of Change in the Connected Economy.  Written way back in 1999, the book was remarkably prescient in talking about how ‘speed, connectivity and intangibles’ will combine to transform business processes throughout the enterprise –

Speed is the shrinkage of time through near-instantaneous communication and computation. Connectivity is the shrinkage of space with the advent of the Web, E-mail, beepers, and other media of communication. Intangibles are values without mass, most importantly knowledge and its mobility, made possible through Speed and Connectivity.

Most important, when it comes to creating value the traditional lines distinguishing products from services are “blurring.”

There are many lessons to be derived from the book, but I want to focus on applying this insight to one credit union business process in particular – the onboarding of new members.  Specifically, not just the discrete process of signing up members (i.e., filling out applications), but the process of engaging them in order to transform your credit union into their primary financial institution.

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Do Your Members Still Trust You Today Like They Did Yesterday?

At the core of the loyalty that members have displayed over the years is an unabiding trust placed in their credit unions, to the point that it has become a brand attribute for credit unions.  But there have been significant changes in the way members view financial institutions in general, and these new perspectives affect how they view credit unions and their loyalty toward them. Have you done everything you can to adapt to the challenges and opportunities offered by this shift? I attended a packed breakout session at the NAFCU Annual Conference today called “Standing in Your Member’s Shoes,“ from Martie Woods, VP and Chief Experience Officer (I love that title!) for Deluxe Corporation.

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