LAS CROABAS, Puerto Rico – Stealing bank customers comes down to brand, place and culture, says Charlene Stern senior vice president of experience retail of NewGround Inc, a strategic planning/design/build firm. According to Stern, the credit union challenge is to offer a differentiated financial services experience that integrates “know-how” with sophisticated packaging for the future. “We believe financial services providers are in a retail business and compete everyday for share of mind and wallet,” said Stern. “The time is now for credit unions to have the competitive advantage-but banks are slowly learning.” Stern says in addition to deeper branding efforts, redefining the branch and the branch experience combined with a “member-centric” sales culture will help position the credit union image as one of service providers rather than “order takers”. Here is a list of Stern’s Top 10 mistakes made by the financial services industry: 1. Poor track record for change-by playing it safe you lose consumers 2. Competing mainly on price and decreasing differentiation 3. Lack of innovation 4. Ignoring the emotional needs in the consumer’s buying decision 5. No far-reaching strategic vision-sometimes instead of small steps a wholesale change is critical 6. Flawed “unit for sale” mentality 7. Lack of sales culture from the top down 8. False sense of progress and complacency 9. Technology investments driven by a cost-cutting paradigm 10. Misunderstood and undervalued retail – the branch and its staff [email protected]

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to, part of your ALM digital membership.

Your access to unlimited content isn’t changing.
Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Critical information including comprehensive product and service provider listings via the Marketplace Directory, CU Careers, resources from industry leaders, webcasts, and breaking news, analysis and more with our informative Newsletters.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and CU Times events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account?


© 2023 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.


Credit Union Times

Join Credit Union Times

Don’t miss crucial strategic and tactical information necessary to run your institution and better serve your members. Join Credit Union Times now!

  • Free unlimited access to Credit Union Times' trusted and independent team of experts for extensive industry news, conference coverage, people features, statistical analysis, and regulation and technology updates.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and Credit Union Times events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join Credit Union Times

Copyright © 2023 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.