Billy Beane and Jeff Baxter were joined on stage by Sarah Snell Cooke, Editor-in-Chief of CU Times, Stan Hollen, President/CEO CO-OP Financial Services and Frank Diekman, Publisher CU Journal to discuss challenges and hot button issues. Challenges Sarah mentioned that aging is a real challenge for the credit union industry, how can the industry attract younger people, find new, passionate employees? The other challenge mentioned was today’s success of credit unions and how the industry can effectively integrate it into the current business model. Hot Button Issues Capital is a huge issue since the Fed keeps the interest rates down and it’s hard to put this capital to work. Jeff Baxter urged credit unions to tap into the culture and people of the local community. Be agile, learn and engage with people. Frank Diekman argued that credit unions don’t have to reinvent themselves but they have to communicate their USP better without spin. Be real, be authentic. Credit Unions are on the right track but they are moving too slow. Jeff Baxter inserted that when you’re doing well, you should be digging deeper. The biggest failure in the credit union industry is not that members can’t tell the story, employees can’t tell the story. Billy Beane shared his personal credit union story, being so impressed that his branch answered all his questions when he was a young adult and helped him to find a prosperous, financial path, developing a trusting relationship. Credit Unions should focus more on financial education, working with high schools and teach them on the value of money. The term ‘Credit Unions’ is still a challenge, especially for young people. More importantly, how are credit unions are dealing with the new way members want to communicate with? Young people don’t go to the branch anymore, they expect to do all their financial transactions through their mobile devices.This is the challenge for years to come. Jeff Baxter urged credit unions to deliver tangible value over time. What is the message you would give to your credit union members? - Look at what your members want and serve them the way they want to be served. - People need to know the fundamentals and build upon it. - Communicate with your members. They are your best ambassadors. - Build a platform that allows members to be an ambassador. - Learn from other businesses, not only from your industry.