The CUInsight Experience podcast: Brian Branch – Global exposure (#83)

“When you see a problem, you need to find a solution.” - Brian Branch

Brian Branch - The CUInsight Experience

Thank you for tuning in to episode 83 of The CUInsight Experience podcast with your host, Randy Smith, co-founder of This episode is brought to you by our friends at PSCU. As the nation’s premier payments CUSO, PSCU proudly supports the success of more than 1,500 credit unions.

Across the globe, credit unions have stepped up to serve their members and communities throughout this pandemic. On this week’s show, I’m talking with Brian Branch, President and CEO of the World Council of Credit Unions or WOCCU, about the leadership role credit unions have to make changes both in the U.S. and around the world going forward. Brian and I also discuss some of the success stories he’s seeing on the global stage. 

During the episode, Brian and I also discuss some of the struggles we’ll all likely feel from a global recession. He shares how his team is adapting to further engage with the global credit union community and keep conversations going. Brian also shares his thoughts on why US credit unions must be active in the global credit union community, and why he believes our current crisis is an opportunity for credit unions to build loyalty and grow their membership. 

In the leadership and life hacks portion of the show, we learn about Brian’s 30-year tenure with WOCCU and how the inspiration has changed with time on the job. He tells us about developing the ability to make difficult decisions, how mentors have helped shape his career, and what people can do to get involved with WOCCU. Brian also shares a big win from early in his career with WOCCU when he helped change the credit union model in Latin America.

We learn in the rapid-fire section that Brian wanted to be a paleontologist when he grew up. We also find out that a trip to Mexico in high school inspired Brian’s love of traveling. Brain shares that he loves riding his bike or walking when he has a day off and that his favorite album of all time is Sticky Fingers by The Rolling Stones. If you have ever wondered about the global credit union community, this is an episode you don’t want to miss.

Find the full show notes on

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Books mentioned on The CUInsight Experience podcast: Book List 

How to find Brian:
Brian Branch, President and CEO of WOCCU
Facebook | LinkedIn | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Show notes from this episode:
A big shout-out to our friends at PSCU, an amazing sponsor of The CUInsight Experience podcast. Thank you! 
Check out all the outstanding work that Brian and his team at WOCCU are doing here. 
Shout-out: George Ombado
Shout-out: African Confederation of Cooperative Savings and Credit Association
Shout-out: CUES
Shout-out: CUNA’s Governmental Affairs Conference
Shout-out: Jill Nowacki
Shout-out: Lois Kitsch
Shout-out: Bill Cheney
Album mentioned: Sticky Fingers by The Rolling Stones
Book mentioned: Way of Love: Recovering the Heart of Christianity by Norman Wirzba
Shout-out: Mahatma Gandhi
Shout-out: Martin Luther King, Jr. 
Previous guests mentioned in this episode: George Ombado, Jill Nowacki (episodes 4, 18, 37, 64 & 82), Lois Kitsch, Bill Cheney

In This Episode:
[02:21] – Welcome back to the show, Brian!
[04:20] – Brian shares some success stories he sees from the global community.
[07:25] – They speak about people working from home and those who don’t have that opportunity.
[09:20] – Brian discusses how his office is communicating and assisting global offices during the pandemic.
[12:30] – Why is it important for US credit unions to be involved with the global credit union community?
[14:25] – Brian shares what he will be most proud of that his team has accomplished a year from now.
[15:50] – What inspired you to take the position at WOCCU?
[16:35] – Brian shares that the inspiration hasn’t changed in the years he has been at WOCCU.
[17:11] – Make a difference. It is something his team hears him say all the time.
[18:04] – Brian says that he had to cultivate the ability to make hard decisions.
[19:33] – How have mentors helped you build your career?
[20:02] – Brian shares how to get in contact with his office if you want to get involved with the global community.
[21:20] – Brian speaks about how the golden rule treats others as you would like to be treated and has served him well over the years.
[21:41] – Brian discusses what a regular workday looks like now and what a perfect workday would be.
[23:18] – Brian shares a big win he had early in his career.
[24:40] – What do you do to recharge when you have a day off?
[26:00] – Brian wanted to be a paleontologist when he grew up.
[26:40] – What is the best album of all time?
[27:08] – Is there a book you think everyone should read?
[27:34] – Brian shares that time with his family has become more important and doing things that have less impact has become less important.
[28:33] – Gandhi, Martin Luther King, are the two people who come to mind when he hears the word success.
[28:59] – Brian shares some final thoughts.
[30:25] – Thank you for being on the show, Brian!

Randall Smith

Randall Smith

Randall Smith is the co-founder of, the host of The CUInsight Experience podcast, and a bit of a wanderlust. As one of the co-founders of CUInsight he looks ... Web: Details