May 20 2013

Credit Unions as Member Mentors: Takeaways from Crashing the AC&E

The Crasher group poses with Sundeep Kapur, who presented "Credit Unions as Member Mentors" at the AC&E

The Crasher group poses with Sundeep Kapur, who presented “Credit Unions as Member Mentors” at the AC&E

Last week, Carrie Susemihl, Jennifer Knapp, and I got to spend four inspiring days “crashing” the Michigan Credit Union League’s Annual Conference & Exposition. Why am I willing to tell you about it?

Well, surprisingly, “crashing” is welcomed in the credit union world. It’s a special opportunity for credit union professionals under 30 to attend the industry conferences frequented by execs, senior managers, and board members. This year twelve crashers from credit unions throughout the state (led by two fearless leaders, one of whom is our own Carrie) got to join the thousand or so attendees at the AC&E in Detroit.

As we’re all in different roles at our respective credit unions—marketing, lending, IT, finance, even collections—we’ve each got a slightly different perspective on the day to day operations that keep our credit unions going.

We had the opportunity to attend various educational sessions with expert speakers from throughout the industry. The one that most stuck with me was on how credit unions can serve as mentors to their members.

At the risk of taking the magic out of social media, I’m going to let you in on a secret: The majority of the time when you’re commenting on the Consumers Facebook page, tweeting us, and asking us questions, I’m the one who’s responding.

Why does that matter? Because I want you to know that I—that we as a Consumers family—know you. And sure, I can find out a lot without you ever telling me a thing via Facebook or Twitter. I know, for instance, how many of our followers live in each of our communities and how many of you fall into a particular age range.

But those numbers in themselves don’t mean much. At Consumers, we know your names when you walk into our offices. I know many of you face to face, as I’ve worked in our Riley and South Haven offices, and filled in or shadowed at many others. On our Facebook page, I remember what you share each week on our Winning Member Wednesday questions and the comments you leave on our photos. When you tweet about the staff member who made your day, it makes mine to pass along the compliment to her.

In the AC&E breakout session Credit Unions as Member Mentors, we talked about the importance of recognizing our members on every channel—in the office, on the phone, and online—so that we can keep up a continuous conversation as we work with you to help you reach your financial goals.

As I get back into my daily routine, I’d like to encourage you to share why you engage with us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or YouTube. How can we bring you more of what you’re looking for? Is it financial education? Pictures of our awesome employees having fun at work? Member success stories? Let us know. We’re here to keep the conversation going and continually improve your Consumers experience.

Interested in more takeaways from the AC&E? Find my live-tweeted notes on Twitter: @EmENickerson / #mculace.

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