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Networking is an excellent way for credit union executives to find out what’s going on around them in the community and get tips on how to do things better or trends coming down the pike. Networking also lets your competition in on your strategies and could provide greater competitive pressures when another credit union decides that your foray into some new product or service or geographic area is a good idea for them as well.

Herein lies the problem for credit unions created 100 years ago in the United States to work cooperatively yet operating in the financial services marketplace of the 21st Century. I attended two events this week: one economic forum with a session on enterprise risk management and one celebration of credit unions’ 100 years. So, what of the risks of cooperating and competing, and which credit unions will still be around to celebrate their bicentennial?

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