Reimagining the piggy bank: How daydreams drive innovation in the credit union universe

Let’s face it, the image of a trusty piggy bank filled to the brim with coins feels a tad … well, quaint. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a certain charm to that childhood symbol of saving, but isn’t it time we challenged the familiar? Because here’s the thing: reimagining what’s “normal” is the launchpad for innovation, collaboration, and—you guessed it—ultimate sustainability for the incredible credit union movement.

So, round up all the dreamers, and let’s head off into a world where “what if” isn’t just a question for curious toddlers, but the fuel that propels the credit union industry into a bright, innovative future.

What if … our branches became community hubs?

Instead of sterile, silent lobbies with barriers between member and staff what if credit unions transformed into vibrant spaces buzzing with life? Think workshops on financial literacy for kids, co-working areas for local entrepreneurs, or even rooftop gardens where members can connect over a community garden, a coffee shop, or a brewery (and maybe a friendly game of trivia!).

What if … collaboration became our superpower?

Credit unions are already known for their member-centric approach. But what if we took it a step further? Imagine a network of credit unions working together to develop cutting-edge financial tools, sharing resources, and amplifying each other’s impact. Think of it as a credit union Avengers team, assembling to tackle financial challenges head-on! NACUSO Board Chair, Becky Reed, always says, “Collaboration is our superpower, and CUSOs are the superheroes” and we couldn’t agree more! Recognizing that you alone, don’t have to be everything for everyone.

What if … sustainability became the new black?

Okay, maybe not literally black (because green is pretty darn symbolic), but what if environmental and social responsibility became the cornerstone of every credit union decision? We’re talking eco-friendly office spaces, loans that prioritize renewable energy sources, and community outreach programs focused on financial empowerment in underserved areas. We know that younger generations that credit unions are targeting are purpose driven and they’ll want to know what you can offer them beyond traditional banking services.

The beauty of these “what ifs” is that they spark curiosity. They nudge us to break free from the confines of the ordinary and explore the extraordinary possibilities that lie ahead. Now, I’m not saying we ditch the piggy bank entirely (sentimental value is a thing, after all). But what if we saw it as a steppingstone, a reminder of the simple act of saving that can blossom into something truly revolutionary?

So, the next time you find yourself wondering “what if,” don’t push that thought away. Embrace it! Because within that question lies the potential to transform the credit union experience, fostering a future that’s not just sustainable, but downright fantastical.

Let’s reimagine the familiar, dream big, and collaborate like never before. After all, the credit union universe is waiting for its next set of innovators. Are you ready to answer the call?

Amanda Reed

Amanda Reed

Amanda Reed joined NACUSO in December of 2021 as the Marketing and Membership Officer. She has a background in education and served as a middle school English teacher before being ... Web: Details