What will “people helping people” look like as the pandemic continues and in a post-pandemic world? CUNA Chief Advocacy Officer Ryan Donovan said in CUInsight Friday that if credit unions fail to define “what will be” for themselves, someone else will do it for them.
“We can’t go back to the WAS; the IS isn’t permanent; and how well we anticipate and take advantage of the WILL BE depends on our ability to broaden our focus, question our assumptions, and challenge ourselves to focus on what we are going to do as opposed to what we can no longer do,” Donovan wrote. “For years, the credit union movement has grappled with what it means to modernize. While we’ve never bragged about being nimble, the credit union movement has adroitly pivoted to meet the present day needs of our members and communities. Now, we have the power to define what WILL BE for credit unions.”
Donovan said this defining requires credit unions to “distill the true purpose behind what we do,” and assess what remains a priority, adapting strategies on what credit unions can do.
“How will we serve our stakeholders in the future? What will they need from us? How must policy change to support those needs?” Donovan wrote. “These are questions we’ve asked ourselves before, but their importance is magnified because foundational assumptions and operational norms have been obliterated.”
He added that the more credit unions are able to define their own destiny, members and communities will see the benefits.
“Thinking about what WILL BE is hard at a time when what IS seems so desperate and uncertain,” he wrote. “But if we stabilize the IS and focus on the WILL BE, we will find ourselves in a much stronger position to have a long lasting and deep impact on credit union members and our communities.