Count financial services consultant Rich Jones as a big believer in the power of reinvention.
That certainly is evident on a personal level. He experienced the highs and lows of the dot-com era in the 1990s, has held executive-level credit union marketing jobs, and now serves as a consultant for Credit Union Financial Exchange (CUFX), a CUNA Technology Council initiative that sets industry software integration standards.
“You should always re-evaluate: Am I finding true satisfaction in what I’m doing? Am I achieving my personal life goals?” Jones says on the latest CUNA News Podcast. “This has nothing to do with having a bigger house, or a nicer car. It’s about who do I want to be, and am I getting there with this career?”
And it rings true organizationally, too. Twice, Jones oversaw major credit union rebranding efforts that involved changing long-held names of the institutions, at Elevations Credit Union (formerly University of Colorado Credit Union) and Elements Financial Federal Credit Union (formerly Eli Lilly Federal Credit Union).
“Whenever you have organizational change, you’re going to have to face naysayers and Doubting Thomases,” Jones says. “And you’re going to have to use, not command-and-control [techniques], but your influence, to help them understand what is the win-win for them, the organization and the member. Leaders that are passively bobbleheading their way through life in today’s economy are dinosaurs.”
In a wide-ranging conversation with podcast host Craig Sauer, Jones also shares the leadership lessons he has learned—sometimes accidentally—and speaks about the value of defining industry-wide software standards in an era of rapid technological change.