I visited a branch of my credit union recently. They have a nice picture of their board members with the credit union's mission statement underneath. It says 'Offering members exceptional and innovative financial services.'
Now, I personally know of one innovative thing they offer right off the bat. When my turn came, I went through my transaction waiting for a lull to ask my question. When it happened I asked, as I pointed to the picture on the wall, 'What innovative services do you offer?'
The teller looked at it and then replied 'Oh I don't know. They just made that up.' We had a good laugh and I went my merry way.
It's not a big deal. I got done what I came to do, had a friendly encounter, and a laugh at the end. If someone had been standing outside and asked me to rate my experience on an extremely satisfied to extremely dissatisfied scale, I would say it was close to the former. (Check back in a few days to see why I think member satisfaction is the enemy of a great credit union brand.)
But... let's think "what if."
What if she had responded immediately with "I can tell you three things that are innovative about our credit union." After all, I asked the question, so why not let loose and really own the statement?
Tip to all credit unions:
- Make sure your staff can explain anything you've posted or displayed in the branch in the blink of an eye.
- If staff have a tough time putting it into words, change the words. Odds are your members' eyes are glazing over at the "corporate-speak" anyway.
Do you have a simple yet inspiring mission statement?