Which Hat Are You Wearing?

As a Texan, I own many hats: a Cowboy hat, a baseball cap (Texas Rangers) and a Dallas Cowboys hat. I even own a special hat (that absorbs sweat) for when I run and a hat (old and beat up) for when I do yard work. It seems like there are hats for every occasion.

So when it comes to managing your financial institution, what hat are you wearing? Too many times in credit unions and banks we are wearing our executive hat. Maybe it’s time we put on our member or customer hat instead.

As author and Harvard professor Youngme Moon says, “I tell my students that marketing is the only function within the organization that is expressly designed to sit at the intersection where business meets people. Real people. And the problem with real people is they don’t see the world the same way a businessperson does. They don’t speak the same language of bullet points; they don’t organize the world into flowcharts and frameworks. People, real people, view the world organically. They are idiosyncratic. They are unpredictable.”

When wearing your executive hat, you ask the question, “how does this {insert project or product} help our bottom line? When wearing your member/customer hat, you ask the question, “how does this {insert project or product} help the people we are serving? It is a completely different perspective.

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