In a CU Times opinion piece, Jeff Rendel wrote, “Point your strategic thinking toward objectives that steer revenue.” He also pointed out that credit union members are the biggest influence on the top line.

Therefore it follows that credit union management and boards must know as much about the membership as they do about themselves. Credit unions’ product and service offerings are commodities, so credit unions must identify and promote their value adds, such as relationships, tools, program offerings and other types of support. But these must all align with objectives that generate a positive impact on the top line.

As Rendel wrote, “Strategy drives revenue and revenue, managed efficiently, sustains profits.” He cited the objective of one credit union that I felt was really sharp because it recognizes the critical member while benefiting the credit union financially: “Double the value that our members receive as a result of their membership investment in their credit union.” But it seems many credit unions balk at talk of revenue and sales and profits, which are at the heart of this. This particular credit union is increasing its ratio of loans approved-to-booked. Sounds like a winning measurement that factors both the members’ and the credit unions’ best interests, and by the very nature of a credit union, the increased revenues are reinvested in new technology and better pricing.

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