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« When Members Can Make Confident Decisions, You Profit | Main | CEO Institute I: 'We Did Not Let me Down' »

Employee Motivation Drives Success

By Kristin Gilpatrick

Do you meet with every employee, in person? If you’re a small credit union, ‘yes’ is an easy answer. It should be just as easy an answer for a large credit union, according to the success achieved by the most recent CUES Outstanding Chief Executive award winners.

Both the 2011 winner, Robert W. Hoefer, now retired CEO of Dupaco Community Credit Union, Dubuque, Iowa, and 2010 winner Randy Smith, CPA, CCD, CEO of Randolph Brooks Federal Credit Union, Universal City, Texas, told interviewers for Credit Union Management magazine they meet with every employee at least once in order to pass on—directly from the top down—the credit union philosophy, strategy and goals. In both cases, this meant personal meetings with more than 200 people.

Smith met with new employees for a full day to detail credit union and member service philosophies as well as his expectations for performance. “After they have gone through the basic training and they’ve been in the field about six months, I spend the day with them,” he said. “We have breakfast and lunch together and we talk about the history, religion and philosophy of credit unions. We discuss why we are in business, what we are about and what we are planning to do.”

Hoefer had similar discussions with his employees to ensure credit union philosophy and Dupaco strategy were incorporated from day one, he said. “We only hire people who believe in Dupaco Community Credit Union’s mission … and [during orientation] we meet [to] relay the importance of owning the interaction with the member and delivering a positive Dupaco experience.”

Personal attention to staff education and development is a significant part of the motivation strategies each employed to grow their credit unions into industry and community powerhouses during respective 40- and 20-year turns at the helm. What do you do to drive success at your organization? 

Kristin Gilpatrick is a freelance writer.

Appreciation for the personal motivation and support is part of what prompted these credit unions to nominate their leaders for the prestigious CUES Outstanding Chief Executive award. Nominate an executive you know who displays professional achievement, motivates employees and is dedicated to their community for the 2012 CUES Outstanding Chief Executive award by June 1.

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Reader Comments (2)

Employees make or break your brand. The more you invest in your employees, the more you are investing in your brand. In fact, your employees will treat your members only as good as you treat your employees.

May 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMark Arnold

Kristin - the examples you provide for both leaders illustrates the importance of hiring people for their future fit in the company - embracing company culture and mission during the orientation process and continuing it by example. Often when I write about employee motivation I find it important that leaders connect with their staff in very similar ways. Thanks for sharing.

May 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWarren Rutherford

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