Credit Union executives from all across the country listened, networked and collaborated at THINK 15. And, they shared their insights and ideas throughout the conference on various social channels. The THINK team analyzed the social data to understand better what speaker insights connected with the audience.

Speaker Insights

1.“Really big ideas look very small in the beginning because no one can see it. It gets bigger as more people see it.” – Nilofer Merchant

When you hold an idea in a closed fist, you control it. It is yours. And no one else can access it. Ideas held tightly — as if in a fist — can’t be seen. But an idea held in an open hand can evolve. It has space to grow bigger. Ideas are actually organic, living things. If they have room to expand, they can quite possibly spread, and be picked up by others and grow into something much, much bigger than what you imagined.

2.“Help others find meaning. Engage them in something important.” – Nir Eyal

In an era where we get beaten down by 24/7 work demands on our time and increasing levels of stress in all areas of our lives, it is critically important that leaders find ways to help all of their employees connect or re-connect to what is important, to a purpose, to our universal search for meaning. And just as importantly, leaders need to re-connect with their own sense of purpose to be able to continue to fuel their own inner fire.

3.“Sometimes you have to completely let go of your old paradigms to create truly innovative solutions.” – J.B. Straubel

The shift in management paradigm to focus on innovation is as transformational as the shift from the medieval view that the sun revolves around the earth to the view that earth and the other planets revolve around the sun. It is a fundamental transition in world-view. Once you make this shift, everything is different.

4.“Create a narrative to understand what the user is trying to solve and how they feel. Design to the narrative.” – Lisa Gansky

If you want to understand the needs and desires of users, design empathy into the organizational structure. Part of this design needs to be the understanding that the other departments will be antagonistic towards being measured. If your credit union is truly interested in providing user-centric products and services, empathy needs to be a core foundational narrative of your organization.

5.“Don’t forget to use your emotions as data!” – Sara Critchfield

Rationality can work to save us from impulse decisions based on negative feelings that aren’t justified. But relying exclusively on rational thought can easily backfire. When the rational brain takes over, people tend to make all sorts of decision-making mistakes. They ignore the wisdom of their emotions, and start basing their arguments on things they can explain rationally, like survey data. Emotions need to be as important for business decisions as data.

Leadership is both an art and a science. These tools are guidelines, not rigid rules. Everyone has to develop his or her own individual leadership style. Make these tools a part of your arsenal and use them well as you strive to reach people on an emotional level. Be Human. This Matters.

THINK 15 is now behind us. The conversation continues on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. And THINK 16 is right around the corner, our special Insider rate offer only available until June 5. Keep thinking. And doing.