Pride in their job and pride for your credit union is something you unequivocally expect from your employees. You want them to be loyal. You want them to be excited about the credit union and share it with anyone and everyone.
But I am going to ask you a hard question right now. Are you, the leader of the credit union, as equally excited to share your credit union with the members who want and need you?
Let’s say you are at a restaurant enjoying a meal with your spouse (and you’re the CEO of your credit union), and the waiter is asking what you do for a living. You say, “I work for a bank.”
The waiter, working at this restaurant to subsidize his income because he is an entrepreneur at his growing company, is hustling to build a better life for himself and his family. He begins asking if you do small business loans.
Not even looking him in the eye, you say “you have to qualify for membership and we don’t work with very many businesses,” trying to end the interaction.
Serving people in any industry isn’t always convenient and on your timeline. Peoples’ financial needs are always on their mind…not just when the credit union is open. They may not be the “ideal member” you have in your mind. They may have more than one job to support their family. They may be drowning in debt or they may be recovering from a big financial tragedy and are starting to fight their way back.
I will end with a second hard question: If you were a fly on the wall at the restaurant witnessing that conversation between the waiter and one of your employees, would you be upset with them? Would you see the pride for your credit union that you expect them to have?
Pride, enthusiasm, inspiration, and excitement are all attributes that can and should be developed daily among employees at all levels. Credit unions continue to have the best brand story of any industry (yes I may be biased) because credit unions do all of the things that members need and want but they do it with fewer financial and human resources. Which means you work harder.
Why do you work harder? Because you have a heart for the mission of your credit union. And how should that work make you feel? Proud.