What’s Your Organization’s Mindset?

Elizabeth Rider
What’s Your Organization’s Mindset?

I’m sure you’ve all heard about having a growth mindset. But is that the only mindset vital to your credit union or community bank’s success?


If you want to succeed, you’ll have to change how you look at a lot of things. And you must make sure mindset is organizational, not just individual. The right mindsets should permeate the entire staff, from the C-suite down to the tellers.

So, what are the best organizational mindsets? Here’s three to get you started.

The Investment Mindset

How do you view every dollar spent? Is it an investment or an expense? If it’s an expense, you might fall prey to a growth-halting mindset.

Here’s an example of how the expense mindset plays out. You spend money, expenses quickly pile up and you want nothing more than to stop the bleeding. This is especially true during tough economic situations – you cut costs and pull back as much as possible.

But survival mode doesn’t spark future growth. Confident investment does. A Harvard Business Review study showed the companies best at cutting costs had the lowest probability (21%) of defeating competitors once tough times ended.

While we’re not advocating for reckless spending, viewing every dollar spent as an investment will make you stronger once the downturn ends. Act when your competitors are delaying their decisions, and use an investment mindset to pull ahead.

The Consumer-Facing Mindset

A portion of your employees (such as tellers and member service representatives) already have this mindset. But do all your employees have it?

It’s an important question to ask, especially given the “back office staff” temptation to view their role as not impacting members or customers. And when staff believe their performance doesn’t affect consumers, service will suffer.

Don’t let this happen!

Realize every role is a consumer-facing position, whether the employee speaks directly to a consumer or not. Changing job names helps develop this mindset. For example, some credit unions have remade “back office staff” into “member-impacting staff.”

Have everyone focus on the members or customers, and the whole organization will succeed.

The Long-Term Mindset

What does the future mean to you? Is it 5 o’clock Friday? Or five to ten years away?

For credit union and community bank leaders, it always means five to ten years. But sometimes it’s hard to act like it. The day-to-day grind eats up your time, and before you know it, it’s 5 o’clock Friday. You have a long-term mindset but feel forced into short-term actions.

Find time to translate the long-term mindset into action. How? One way is to arrive at work two hours early just to plan (something the CEO of Allied FCU does). Another way is adding a long-term strategy section to each meeting so it’s always top-of-mind.

Whatever you do, stay committed to acting out your long-term mindset. A committed leader inspires the rest of the organization to fall in line.

Developing these organizational mindsets often means training your leaders and staff. On The Mark Strategies can handle this time-consuming work while helping you create the best organization possible.

Sign up for leadership training or member experience training today!

Elizabeth Rider
Chief of Staff
Elizabeth Rider
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