The Powerful Impact of Well-Rested Community Bank and Credit Union Leadership

Sean Galli
The Powerful Impact of Well-Rested Community Bank and Credit Union Leadership

Spring Break is nearly here for many families, and in an industry that’s so often go, go, go…it’s a good reminder to hit pause.

Leaders are people in desperate need of a break. Getting caught up in the success of the institution drags many community bank and credit union leadership teams through endless work cycles extending late into the nights or deep into the weekends. And sometimes that rapid pace is necessary.

But other times, it wears you down and worsens your leadership.

The Numbers Don’t Lie…

‍Among the general population, at least 29% of people get less than six hours of sleep a night. Look at leaders and that statistic jumps to 42%. Other research shows 60% of leaders feel worn out at the end of each day, and (maybe even more disturbing) 86% of those with future leadership potential feel the same way.

‍These aren’t just meaningless numbers, either.

Studies by the Harvard Business Review show unrested leaders are more impatient and abusive leaders. These leaders harm employees’ emotional wellness and encourage poor employee sleep habits too. In some cases, more staff members working under grumpy leaders acted unethically.

Worn-Out Leaders Hurt Your Growth

Is your community bank or credit union leadership team constantly burned out? If so, you may experience negative effects on your institution.

Your staff suffers under crabby bosses. And a suffering staff leads to suffering growth. Turnover increases, people care less about the "why" and employees’ own resting habits take a dive.

Exhausted leaders are also less likely to make sound strategic decisions or prioritize well. They could become disgruntled – which when mixed with close access to people’s money – is a dangerous combination.

"Rest" Is More Than a Nice Word

‍Many regulators and financial organizations understand the importance of rest. That’s why rules exist to make community bank and credit union leadership team members take multiple consecutive days off. Taking breaks means a better security environment.

But let’s set security aside. Getting rest bolsters productivity and growth.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos puts it well: "Making a small number of key decisions well is more important than making a large number of decisions. If you shortchange your sleep, you might get a couple of extra ‘productive’ hours, but that productivity might be an illusion."

Don’t be fooled by checkmarks on your task list. Put the smartest decisions above more decisions. Take rest seriously.

Ways to Get Rest

‍Once you commit to resting, you must decide how that’s going to look. Part of it is personal…everyone rests differently. But here are some suggestions:

  • Get at least six hours of sleep (but hopefully eight)
  • Don’t check email or messages while away
  • Take some naps when off work
  • Set time limits on your work life

One more thing: don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

It may not always be possible for community bank and credit union leadership teams to get the best rest. But simply getting better rest makes a difference.

And if you need more help leading your institution, On The Mark Strategies offers more than 100 community bank and credit union leadership training modules. Book a free consultation now.

Sean Galli
Marketing Coordinator