It has always been said that parents do not have a favorite child.
They love all their children equally for their unique talents, perspective, and heart.
I have one older sister.
Did I mention she is older? She is.
We are three years apart and couldn’t be more different if we tried.
She barely had to crack a book in school to get an A.
I, on the other hand, would have to have an official relationship with said book.
She is quiet and reserved.
I am not.
She would rather be silent than speak to a crowd.
I look for the loudest folks and form a tribe.
No, parents aren’t supposed to have favorites.
Right mom? *wink wink*
So, it goes without saying that when we are dealing with members, we should not play favorites either.
I have seen front line staff completely avoid someone who walked in for assistance because they don’t particularly like that person.
I have seen someone put up a “next window sign” as soon as they see their car pull in.
Or what about the mysterious urgency to urinate at the exact moment this pesky member arrives?
I know this is not a news flash and it is definitely not new information, but we are here to serve ALL of our members.
Yes, this means the members that are difficult on a consistent basis.
There are folks out there that will get an attitude with you if you print a receipt for them when they did not state if they even wanted one.
Then there are folks that smile, take the receipt, and dispose of it elsewhere.
People are different.
My sister is the type to tell a member service representative thank you and walk away when she was just treated poorly.
I am the person that will ask what happened to make you so cranky.
Neither is wrong.
We are both unique individuals and just like our members we handle things differently.
I must admit, it annoys me when I see people treating certain members with distain.
Sure, they may have given you a hard time with some situation, but they are still a member and they still deserve respect the next time they walk in.
We can’t keep a tally of bad behavior on members and expect our membership to grow or the power of word of mouth to help us.
Maybe this guy is arrogant.
Maybe this gal stops into the credit union 5 to 10 times a day.
Maybe this kid refuses to sign up for online account access and gets upset when he doesn’t know his balance.
No matter what member we have facing us, they are a member and they are the reason we operate.
Maybe instead of marking them on your proverbial list of naughty no no’s, you could take it as a challenge to try different approaches to assist them.
So he is arrogant.
Ask him about his profession and how he got there.
So she stops 5 to 10 times a day.
Ask her if she is excited for warmer weather soon so that she can walk.
So the kid refuses to sign up for online.
Grab your cell phone and show him how easy the app is.
Look, you won’t always win people over.
Humans aren’t always going to like other humans that they meet.
Sometimes there isn’t a valid reason.
Sometimes it was an experience you had with that particular person.
Sometimes they just simply don’t like your face.
I said it.
From time to time it really is that unreasonable and simple.
Regardless, we are here to serve them, assist them, and create an environment that keeps them coming back.
I am not saying take verbal abuse.
I am a firm believer that there are direct, thick lines where service and abuse need to cease.
If they are difficult, maybe the best way to think of it is that it just isn’t about you.
Maybe you are the one person that treats them kindly in the duration of their entire day.
Maybe you give them the comfort to be.
So, I know nobody is supposed to have favorites.
I live with that status every single day.
But maybe, just maybe, it isn’t about who you like more.
Maybe it is about who needs your assistance the most.
Maybe it is about spreading that credit union difference all up in their world.
Maybe . . . it’s that simple.