Find a need and fill It

I was observing focus groups the other night, taking notes and trying to monitor the body language. In the course of conversation, which was about financial institutions, one of the participants sighed, raised her head and said, “Please, just make my life simpler – not more difficult.” As all of the other participants laughed and agreed, I said to myself, “Isn’t that the truth!” It turns out that there are several requests that are packed into that plea.  Here are a few:

  • Do not over complicate things (e.g., loan applications, overdraft/debits/credits rules).
  • Provide outstanding access (e.g., excellent online/mobile apps that are easy/intuitive/powerful, long operating hours, many locations, many ATM locations).
  • Be trustworthy, efficient, and put my needs over your needs.

That’s a “need.”  Can it be met?  Should it be met?  Some have said and continue to say that this list above includes actions that are great for Members, but too costly for credit unions to consider.

Leaders will make this happen. Our business is already disrupted by the growing use of technology – from smartphones and wearables to beacons, et al.  Even more stagnating is the continuing mindset that the objective of delivering a positive customer experience (CX) will take the back seat to other priorities, which will not grow a credit union or its relationship with its Members.  Rather, it will likely only reinforce “transactional” relationships.

A recent report on improving the customer experience in banking found that:

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