During the opening session of the CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference on Monday, March 11, Executive Director of the Foundation, Gigi Hyland, took the stage. She started out by demonstrating the power of our language when it comes to greetings – how East-coasters might greet one another with a “how ah ya?”; how those from Hawaii say “aloha”; millennials and their use of emojis; etc.
This topic of language and how it’s relative and specific to different states, regions and countries applies not only to our verbal dialect, but also relates to how we “speak” to our credit union members. Are we really speaking the language of our members?
This means, are you sure that the products and services that you are providing for your members are really aligning with their needs? A great example of this was demonstrated by a map of the D.C area and the life expectancy of those living in downtown Washington, DC versus those living just 20 miles away. These numbers were different from each other by seven years. Why?
Those living within the city had a lower life expectancy because many people have less access to affordable housing, food, and financial services. We know that when people are struggling financially, this doesn’t just impact their wallets but their mental and physical health as well.
Speaking the language of our members means knowing where they are in life and understanding that financial health is related to physical health – and it’s crucial that we start making this connection to find solutions.
The Foundation is a catalyst for change in the credit union movement by igniting understanding around financial health and finding those solutions. Coming up in April, the Foundation, BALANCE and the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues will be jointly hosting the CU FINHEALTH19 Conference. This conference brings together leading experts in the field for engaging and interactive discussions on the topics of member financial health.
This conference is a great way to connect with others who are focusing in on member financial health, as well as an opportunity to learn strategies, tactics and measurable ways to better serve your most valuable asset – your members.
The Foundation also has a whitepaper entitled, “Health and Financial Well-Being: Two Things That Go Better Together”.
We hope to see you at CU FINHEALTH next month so we can continue working on speaking the right language to improve member financial health!