This session featured insightful research and customer insights, as well as real-life examples of how three different Credit Unions build loyalty – internally and externally.

Brent Dixon (Filene Research Institute) talked about The Crash Network, a group of young Credit Union professionals, catalyzing the movement through meetups, development projects and mentorships. The main point of his presentation was to talk about selected studies of the Filene Research Institute:

  • 36% of Americans trust banks, 57% trust Credit Unions. However, younger people trust Credit Unions less.
  • 86% of online bank customers said customer service is reason they wouldn’t switch. Online customers define service differently.

After the brief introduction, the next three speakers talked about ways to create functional value.

  • Sasha Kemble (Verity Credit Union)  spoke about creating a valuable company culture. It’s not enough to just provide a paycheck and a safe, predictable place work. Credit Unions need to provide a place where people feel loved and a sense of belonging is part of the whole package. In addition, employees need to feel that there are opportunities to grow within the Credit Union and ways to connect their individual passions with the mission of the Credit Union.
  • Chris Wolgamott (Meritrust Credit Union) discussed ways to build loyalty through education. Financial education satisfies an important need in the US since 42% of American’t don’t follow a budget and 32% have no savings. Banks are deeply involved in teaching their customer financial literacy and Credit Unions need to be frontrunners to stay ahead of the game. Credit Unions often function as a transactional company, not as an advisor. Only advisors with trusted relationships will be able to advance from a pure transaction to a real interaction. As Henry Brooks Adams said: “A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.”
  • Last but not least, Ronaldo Hardy (La Capitol Federal Credit Union)discussed how to create loyalty through the in-branch service experience. Members expect your undivided attention, transaction accuracy and quick service that meets their needs. These are the basics. In order to take loyalty to the next level, employees need to remember names, build a quick rapport and get involved in their lives. Real loyalty is contingent upon the strength of the relationship. We must focus our attention on relationship building in order to build the loyalty we’re seeking.

The first day started with a bang. We can’t wait for the next three days.