Leadership versus management qualities was the topic for the 25 credit union people under age 35 who attended the WOCCU Young Credit Union People session.
Using a neural linguistic programming approach, John Goa, managing director of Neural Networks Consulting in Australia, led the group through various exercises that discussed identity, values, behaviors and environment to help people communicate better as leaders and as individuals.
In an opening exercise, he asked what leaders the participants would most like to meet. Nelson Mandela and Barack Obama were the most named. Jack Welch, Margaret Thatcher and Stalin also were nominated.
What do you like most about your job? Goa asked participants. The answers kept repeating themselves: challenge, a chance to work up in the organization, learning, achieving, helping people and having the freedom to express myself were all listed many times.
Leaders do not motivate, he stressed. They inspire people to motivate themselves.
Values are emotional, he said, and it is possible to proactively use values as a method to gain self-motivation in others.
This was the 10th anniversary of the WYCUP program, designed to counteract the aging of the movement by developing young managers. Of those attending the session, 18 were vying for five scholarships and an expense-paid trip to the 2010 WOCCU Conference.
The leader behind the WYCUP program was Grzegorz Bierecki, WOCCU's treasurer and driving force behind the Polish credit union movement. His idea was to single out future leaders from the under-35 age group from different countries, bring them together and help them network internationally to become the leaders of the future.
U.S. scholarship candidates from the United States were Timothy S. Johnson, director branch services Arizona Federal Credit Union, Phoenix, and Amy Stanton, assistant vice president of marketing at Connex Credit Union, North Haven, Conn. The 2008 winner, Anna Corona, branch manager at AEA Federal Credit Union of Somerton, Ariz. was also at the session as part of her scholarship.
Other countries represented were Australia, Ireland, Kenya, Malawi, Poland, Ukraine, the U.S. and Uzbekistan.