The most critical component of 2023 planning

A strong talent strategy is essential to engage employees and yield strong business results

Gallup’s 2022 State of the Global Workplace Report stated that 60% of people are emotionally detached at work and 19% are miserable. A quick review of the CUInsight Weekly Job Report tells a compelling story —job openings are increasing weekly. While I wish I could attribute this change to industry growth, the honest truth is that employees are making changes, which can have major impacts to our credit unions.

With the close of 2022 in sight, most of us have entered Strategic Planning season. This year, it’s critical to prioritize workforce engagement. Setting a Talent Strategy that has a strong connection to your credit union’s purpose, values, and goals is a crucial first step. A strong talent strategy helps everyone understand how they contribute to organizational success and empowers employees to do their best work, driving desired business results— a win-win.

We’ve developed some questions to help you take inventory of your talent strategy. Review the following questions on Purpose, Values and Goals and create or update your Talent Strategy!


Most of us have taken inventory of our personal and professional lives over the past couple of years to determine what’s most important to us. Employees certainly have, and they want to know why a company exists – beyond making a profit. When leaders are able to help employees understand that they are a part of something greater than themselves, and that the work and tasks they do every day are making a difference.

Questions to ask:

  • If you asked an employee what the organization’s purpose is, could they share it?
  • How would employees respond to ‘The purpose of the company makes my work feel important’?
  • Do employees feel they are empowered to live out the purpose?


When employees’ personal values align with the organizational values, they have a stronger sense of belonging and engagement. But a single descriptor for a value is not enough. You must define specific actions and behaviors to ensure employees know not only what they should do, but how to do it.

Questions to ask:

  • Does each organizational value have behaviors/actions tied to them?
  • What stories are being shared with employees? Do they reinforce how your values show up?
  • Do your employee programs (benefits, pay, time-off, policies) reinforce the values or contradict them?
  • Are values integrated into all of your talent practices—Recruitment, Performance, Development, Recognition, Incentives, DEI?


Having a meaningful Purpose and defined Values create a strong culture foundation. But to ensure genuine connection and a sense of belonging, it’s critical that employees understand how they contribute to achieving business objectives—  individually and as a collective team.

Questions to ask:

  • Does every employee have goals tied to the strategic plan and clear expectations for their role?
  • If you asked employees to name your company’s top measures of success, could they do it?
  • Can employees describe how their work helps drive key results?

Take action!

In our engagements we see that credit unions that develop and maintain a talent strategy attract and retain employees and ultimately drive measurable business results. Here are three things you can do to get a pulse on the effectiveness of your Talent Strategy:

  1. Reach out to ten employees from across the organization and ask them:
    • What is our purpose?
    • What are our values?
    • What are our key measures of success/goals?
    • How does your role contribute to the goals?
    • How often are you connecting with your leader on your goals?
  1. Review your corporate communications for the last week.
    • Are the purpose, values and goals reinforced in the messaging?
    • Is your 2022 business plan easily accessible for all employees?
  1. At your next leadership team meeting, share your insights and plan for your talent strategy to address gaps and enhance the employee experience!

As you check-in on your strategic plan with your board and leadership teams this fall, make sure talent attraction, succession planning, and employee engagement are at the forefront of your 2023 business plan.

Chary Krout

Chary Krout

For over 25 years, Chary has dedicated her career to coming alongside credit union employees and leaders, helping them solve problems, and creating better workplaces for everyone.  Chary believes in ... Web: Details