by: Ronaldo Hardy, CEO, Shell Geismar FCU
For the last 47 days I have been subjecting my body to one of the most intense workouts I have ever done in my life. I’m sure you’ve heard of it by now. It’s called Insanity, and it is truly the most insane workout I’ve ever done. Throughout this process, I have had the opportunity to change my life, and I’ve learned a lot. You may think I’m crazy, but I really think there are some valuable lessons credit unions can learn from this program.
1. How to create fans that promote your brand.
One of the first things you’re asked to do as a new customer of Insanity is to utilize your social networks as a workout diary. It allows you to create an accountability system amongst your friends and followers, which keeps you motivated to continue. It also serves as free marketing for the program. All across the country people are telling their friends and followers daily that they completed the workout, and how it made them feel. Believe me, I’m one of them! Oddly, it really does keep me motivated, and it has also resulted in several of my friends choosing to try the program. Now that I have remained on the program for a while, I am a believer in the product and I constantly look for opportunities to tell others about it.
Can credit unions look for a similar method to get their members to talk about them daily in social media? How about a savings diary or even a debt diary? It would keep the member accountable to whatever plan was established, while providing an opportunity to promote your brand. We all know word of mouth continues to be the best marketing.
2. How to motivate people to do what seems impossible to them.
I’m not sure if you know anyone doing the Insanity workout program, but most people I know who are using the program are average people who would not ordinarily workout. Some have never worked out before, aren’t currently working out, and have generally dreaded working out in the past. Nevertheless, they are willing to commit to this program. So, how does he do it?
- He developed a program that encouraged quick results. Shaun T understood that the average person dreads workouts, and that most are fixed on getting the quickest results possible. For most people, 60 days is not a long time to transform their body, so they are willing to get on board.
- He doesn’t force people to move at his pace. He understands that everyone is different; therefore, they must each move at a different pace. Instead of forcing people to work at a rate that is uncomfortable for them, he helps them to find what works for them in order to produce the best results.
- He keeps you motivated when it gets tough. Because this is one of the most intense workouts you will ever do, he finds ways to keep you motivated at the toughest moments. Just when it seems you’re about to lose all of your energy, Shaun T is there to encourage you to Dig Deeper.
As credit unions, we often have members who face obstacles they feel are impossible for them to overcome. Poor credit rating, limited savings, and financial illiteracy are just a few of them. These financial challenges are equivalent to an Insanity workout to an out of shape person. How can we make it seem possible? Are there ways to break down the larger goal into smaller obtainable goals? Can we modify the pace for each member? And can we find ways to encourage the member when it gets tough? I don’t have all the answers, but I believe applying this process to our decisions could go very far in helping our members to reach their goals.
As we continue to evolve as credit unions, it is necessary that we look for new ways to get our message out, and to help our members to grow in their finances. Insanity is a good teacher to all of us on how to get it done.
Ronaldo Hardy is no stranger to the financial community. Though he originally started his career in banking ten years ago, he was bitten by the credit union bug when he joined La Capitol Federal Credit Union in 2004. During his tenure in the financial industry he has served in several roles including Teller, Personal Banker, Loan Underwriter, Member Service Supervisor, Electronic Services Supervisor, Branch Manager/Business Development Officer, Sales Manager, and he currently serves as CEO of Shell Geismar FCU.
He is devoted to making a difference in the financial well being of people. He has a special desire to be a voice and leader for Generation Y in the credit union movement. Recently, he competed in CUES national search for the Next Top Credit Union Executive. He finished as runner up in the competition, and attended CUES CEO Institute I in April of 2011. His goal is to make an impact on the credit union movement for many years to come. www.sgfcu.com