Is Your Dog More Expressive Than Kristen Stewart? Mine Is!
I was surfing the net last week when I came upon this comparison between Kristen Stewart and the author’s dog. (was I bored or what?) Now, being a dog person, I immediately knew my boys were/are/will be more expressive than any actress. Well, maybe not more than Kate Upton, but that’s a story for another time.
After ruminating on this for awhile, and enjoying the time looking at pictures of my boys it occurs to me that the title could have been “Is Your bank More Expressive Than Kristen Stewart? My Credit Union Is!”
I started thinking about my credit union and if it is more expressive than Kristen Stewart, or in this case, a bank. We all know that banks and credit unions do the same things, right? Well sure they do. They offer the usual assortment of savings, checking, CD’s, IRA, loans for everything under the sun and more, but credit unions, because they are owned by their members, help people. Not to mention they offer lower loan rates and much smaller fees.
Other than those two important differences, I came up with a couple of others that prove my credit union is more expressive than a bank.
Now you’ll notice the picture of the bank above is the typical one you’d see in many cities across the country. Check out the picture the credit union, MY credit union above. They do things differently. In that picture, they were celebrating Member Appreciation Day. That’s where they give you a FREE grilled hot dog lunch, just for having an account. Not bad huh? They set up a canopy, grill hot dogs all day long and even hand out free gifts.
Does the guy on the left look like your typical banker? Yeah, mine too, at my old bank. The same bank that charged me huge fees, offered high loan rates and once tried to levy so many fees, it would have closed my account. Although I should thank them, because they led me to my credit union.
Now the woman on the right works at my credit union. They were doing a face painting day (to celebrate their Annual Meeting) and she decided to get her face painted, along with a lot of the other employees. Can you imagine walking into a financial institution, let’s say for a loan, and seeing this young woman? While they take their work of helping people very seriously, they obviously like to have fun.
What? That doesn’t happen at your financial institution?
Is the top left picture the way you see your bank? When you enter to deposit your paycheck or need to beg for a loan, is this what you see? You’re not alone. Most people walk into a wall when they enter their bank. It’s often cold, unfeeling and drab.
Check out the picture above, right. This young girl just won a Kindle. She entered some contest the credit union was having and at the end of the month she won. I asked one of the tellers and she said they have contests darn near every couple of weeks, giving away everything from iTunes cards to Kindles and Netflix subscriptions. Hmmm, my bank never did anything like that!
When arriving at my old bank, the picture above, left was what I was faced with most often. I would stand in line, waiting for a teller to open and sometimes it was waiting for two tellers to stop talking. You know, I don’t mind if you get caught up on the last episode of Seinfeld, but not when there is a line.
I walked into my credit union a while ago and I was greeted with the picture above, right. They were selling stuffed animals to help with their financial education programs. That aside, every time I walk in it’s something new. A contest about this, a giveaway for this, new interns, a new promo, but mostly I encounter people who truly care about me.
My credit union is always giving away something. If it’s not a gift bag, it’s a check to a local non-profit or an iPod to a local student. The point is, my credit union is able to do everything a traditional financial institution can, and still give back to the community as well as give me stellar rates and smaller fees.
Heck, my credit union even has their own candy bar.
Now for full disclosure, my credit union is also my employer and as such, I see first hand what we do for people. I don’t mean just the terrific service, which is usually what people mention first. I see the thought, consideration and work that goes into helping people get a mortgage or helping a student get their first car without mom or dad cosigning. I see the way we work with people who experience a financial hardship, such as losing a job, or losing a loved one. None of us want to face those terrible decisions alone and doing business with my credit union affords me the confidence to know I won’t have to.
I’ve had many bank accounts in my life and I can’t remember one account or one bank that made me feel good, never mind comfortable, about doing business with them. My credit union, and to be fair, I belong to two other credit unions and they are ALL the same way, allows me the freedom and confidence to bank there and understand that while they need to make money to keep the lights on, they are honestly looking out for me and all of their members.