Thursday, February 25, 2010


The Credit Union Way

Client loyalty and service are front and center at not-for-profits: While banks have long groused that credit unions (CUs) are nothing but banks that don't pay taxes, advisors and program managers who have worked in both types of institutions say that there's something profoundly different when clients aren't just customers, but owners.

"A bank is a profit-making institution answerable to its shareholders," says Pete Snyder of Snyder Consulting Services in Roseville, Calif. "The delivery model is generally dog-eat-dog. Banks would do well to try to encourage more of a service culture."

A number of advisors and program managers who made the switch from banks to CUs swear by the customer loyalty that a true service culture provides. Michael Gradl, a program manager at Redwood Credit Union in Santa Rosa, Calif., says, "The relationship with members is just incredibly compelling, and the internal support is also amazing, because the employees at a CU have a real drive to make a difference in the members' lives..."

BIC: The Credit Union Way

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