What does it mean to be part of your team

I was blessed to facilitate forty strategic planning meetings in 2022, and in those sessions spent more time discussing human resource challenges and opportunities than any other topic. For good reason—successful strategies have always begun and ended with people. But times are changing. Credit union leaders find themselves in a very different human resource climate, […]

Global collaboration, inclusion and impact

Cooperation among international credit unions is important to the strength, sustainability and global impact of the credit union movement. A great example of this, and it is only one of many, is the relationship with UK and US credit unions and their associations. Expanding financial inclusion For the past 10 years, ABCUL and Inclusiv have […]

The housing blues — One Bourbon, One Scotch, and One Beer

I don’t drink, but I’ve enjoyed the classic blues song, “One Bourbon, One Scotch, and One Beer,” for as long as I can remember. In 1977, George Thorogood sang a compelling story about a man who lost his job. Unable to pay his rent and thrown out by his landlady, he tries and fails to […]

Break the ties that bind you

These days it is hard to avoid trade articles or hear watercooler conversations about mergers and the shrinking pool of smaller credit unions. There is a growing consensus that small credit unions just can’t survive the competitive road ahead. When I hear or read about these conversations, I’m reminded of credit unions past, that could […]

CDFI, DEI, OTP – an alphabet of hope and concern

The 2022 CDFI CORE funding round just closed. So, anything related to CDFI is top of mind for our team right now. Like anyone involved in the CDFI space, this was a record-breaking year. More certification and more grant applications than ever before. This increased awareness and participation is exciting! But this ramped up output […]

Credit unions and the aggregation of marginal gains

As a strategic planning consultant, I’m always proselytizing the pursuit and achievement of a big vision and goals. I am a believer that we are capable, individually, collectively and as organizations, of doing hard things and achieving big audacious goals. I see it happen all the time. It’s essential to have a clear and robust […]

Small credit union lenders – kicking ass and taking names

According to CUNA Mutual’s Credit Union Trends Report – December 2021, credit union consumer loan growth peaked at 10.5 percent in 2016. It has decreased annually since then, reaching 5.9 percent in 2021. Drilling down a bit further, the chart below reflects the loan growth challenges smaller credit unions have faced during the past two […]

Being a credit union of substance

I recently had a wonderful conversation with a friend about people we know who are of real substance – those people in our life who we admire and who have made a big difference in the lives of those around them. These people bring more than a set of ideas; they also have the character, […]

CDFI credit union rising

The unprecedented pandemic related stimulus money that has been approved for the CDFI Fund has created a historic response from credit unions. Existing CDFI credit unions are stretching to expand their community development and outreach programs. Many more low-income designated credit unions are pursuing CDFI certifications in pursuit of greater community outcomes and of course […]