Get Ready for a Brand New Mix of Virtual and Live THINK Events in 2021!

By Samantha Paxson, CO-OP Chief Experience Officer & Founder of CO-OP THINK

When we made the decision to cancel our live THINK conference last spring and take it virtual, we were crushed.  We were wanting to gather so badly and I personally had no idea what to expect. In a year unlike any other, we knew that credit unions were hungry for strategies to address the tidal force of change catalyzed by the pandemic; but we couldn’t have possibly anticipated how strong the response would be. All told, more than 2,000 credit union professionals showed up and contributed to the success of our first-ever THINK Virtual event series!

My Favorite Moments of this Year

When we first started this effort, it was really unchartered territory for us. While we had produced virtual events in the past, we wanted to be absolutely sure we could deliver the magic and energy of the live THINK event within a virtual format – connecting leaders remotely all across the country.

We’ve had so many insightful experts and compelling keynotes that drove the practical conversations that helped accelerate credit union progress over the course of the year; it’s hard to choose…but here were a few of my favorite moments:

  • When Taco Bell CEO Mark King challenged credit unions to develop a “growth mindset” by investing into the intellectual capital of their employees.

  • When our credit unions reimagined the future of member service with Adobe Chief Product Officer Scott Belsky, at our Future of Workplace Forum (watch a replay here) or when we looked at the intersection of data and the uncertainty of forecasting your strategy in today’s business environment with TED Speaker, CEO and author, Margaret Heffernen.
  • All of the real-time conversations that happened in our chat box! It wouldn’t be THINK without our credit unions connecting, collaborating and learning from each other =)

We’re Just Getting Started…

As we begin to slowly creep out of the shadow of COVID-19, many credit union peers of asked me what I envision for the future of THINK. While I’ve learned that planning in the age of a pandemic is near-impossible, I am feeling emboldened by the success that we’ve accomplished together with THINK this year – nine events, 80 percent return rate, averaging 2,000 CU leaders each time…we collaborated, even though we were far apart. We’ve proven that there is an ongoing need within our movement for a platform that brings inspiring experts, collaboration among credit unions, and actionable strategies; and I am proud that CO-OP continues to offer that platform.

To that end, I am thrilled to announce that we will be continuing our THINK series through a mix of virtual and (we hope) live events in 2021! We’ll be introducing a brand new lineup of inspiring business experts and content-rich sessions designed to help you accelerate growth at your credit union and find your next great idea. And best of all, many of these events will be FREE and open to everyone in the credit union movement!

We will be announcing the official lineup of THINK events in the coming weeks. Once again, I cannot thank you enough for your participation and your thinking and we look forward to an even BETTER series in 2021.

I’ll see you there!

– Samantha Paxson