Keeping Purpose Constant
By David Brock, Community Credit Union President & CEO // February 16, 2012
FROM THE PRESIDENT & CEO
Ed Filene is honored as the father of the U.S. credit union movement. One of his favorite sayings was “Keep purpose constant.”
He recognized the value that a member-owned financial cooperative could bring to consumers even in the hardest of times. Without a small number of stockholders demanding unrealistic returns every quarter, and executives incented with stock options and bonuses tied to stock prices, cooperatives can consider the needs of all its members and take the long view.
Decisions less clouded by the financial fad of the moment usually stand the test of time and create superior value in the long run.
Your credit union recognizes that we have to be financially strong and secure in order to serve the membership when markets are challenging. Our purpose is to help our members save money and build wealth. Behind the scenes is a complex business in which we carefully consider the balance of loan growth, deposit growth, and most importantly, service.
We deal with issues like liquidity, asset quality, earnings, regulatory compliance, market share, capital formation, investment yields, operational efficiency, and employee engagement. We manage branches, payments systems, computer centers, internet sites, and back office operations like accounting, human resources, and marketing. We constantly weigh the risk-reward tradeoff and ask ourselves if the “juice is worth the squeeze.”
Do we always get it right? No, but we always try to ensure that our capacity to absorb surprises is sufficient. On this count, we have an enviable track record. Some of our members have suffered greatly during this downturn, and we have developed many solutions for members to avoid bankruptcy and default that have helped hundreds of our thousands of members to remain solvent and build, or re-build, financial stability.
As we are still sailing into the wind, we know that making these choices will continue to be hard work. Your cooperative takes nothing for granted, especially your membership and support. We continue to be blessed with strong financial performance, engaged members, and a board and staff who aim to keep our purpose constant.
David Brock, President/CEO