Calling all financial superheroes!

financial superheroes

Halloween. You either love it or you hate it. I love it. Luckily, my daughter is a Mini-Me in that regard. She’s also a kindergartener who has struggled to make a decision on her Halloween costume since July.

Her great costume debate started with the immensely popular Elsa from Frozen. Then we purchased a pricey polka dot Bo Peep costume. In the end, I’m happy to report I will be trick-or-treating with a Cleveland Browns’ cheerleader this Halloween.

Why was it so difficult for her to decide on a costume?

She gave me a simple answer with stars in her eyes: “Because on Halloween you can be anything you want to be.”

True. Which is why I knew my daughter was going to encounter a number of superheroes on Halloween. Besides Elsa, cinematic heroes like Superman, Spider-Man, Batman and The Avengers are popular with boys and girls alike. Everyone wants to be a hero – but it takes a lot to be a hero.

That got me thinking about the people I work with at community banks and credit unions. Luckily, I don’t need to wave my daughter’s Elsa wand (yes, we had already purchased that as well) to turn these employees into superheroes this October. They already are!

Here’s why:

 Superheroes are brave

Superman is committed to protecting and defending the innocent. He takes the necessary risks to protect the people he has sworn to serve.

Community banks improve our towns and cities by funding small businesses and using local dollars to help families purchase homes, finance college and build financial security. These superheroes channel most of their loans to the neighborhoods where their depositors live and work, helping to keep local communities vibrant and growing.

Meanwhile, credit unions are not-for-profit because their purpose is to serve their members and their communities. They have been doing so in the U.S. for over 100 years. Putting people before profit is not only the right thing to do, it’s brave as well.

Superheroes are strong                                       

With his ring, the Green Lantern can create anything he wants just by thinking about it. An army under his command, for example. After all, there’s strength in numbers. Like the 7,000 community banks with more than 50,000 locations that exist throughout the United States. Any villainous team should fear the strength of a group like that!

Then there’s Thor and his superhuman physical strength. He’s a lot like the credit union movement. In August, credit unions surpassed 100 million memberships nationwide equating to one in every three Americans.

If that doesn’t demonstrate the strength of the credit union movement, I don’t know what does. But this kind of increasing demand is a challenge that threatens the entire fate of humanity! How do you manage it correctly? Brain power.

Superheroes are smart

Comic experts say Mr. Fantastic, the leader of the Fantastic Four, is easily the smartest superhero. Ever. However, great superheroes don’t have to be super-geniuses. Superman, after all, is only a journalist.

This is an area where people who work at community banks really shine – they use their brain power to react to their customers’ needs. On the forefront of the brilliant minds at a community bank I visited last week was how to improve response times and efficiencies to better serve customers.

Likewise, people who work at credit unions use their brain power to be innovative. Armed with new ideas and refusing to simply accept the status quo, credit unions are always on the forefront of adopting new technology – from mobile access to e-signatures and beyond – to remain competitive and to best serve their members. Because in the end, their big brains are always reminding them that it’s all about superior member service.

There you go. Three examples that prove those of you who work at financial institutions are already superheroes. So now your dilemma is this: What will your costume be this Halloween? Maybe someone with a cape and a superpower?

Michelle Harbinak Shapiro

Michelle Harbinak Shapiro

Michelle Shapiro brings more than 15 years of experience in the banking industry to her role as Financial Services marketing portfolio manager at Hyland. Her mission is to share best practices and evangelize the power of ECM as a tool for banks, credit unions and lenders to help automate paper-based processes and proactively manage regulations.

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