​​Four things to consider for your digital transformation

It was just over a year ago that the banking world was turned on its head, whiplashed by financial uncertainty and widespread unemployment-inspired changes in retirement balances and consumer spending habits. But crisis has a way of accelerating innovation and transforming things for good. If they hadn’t already, the Covid-19 pandemic brought to light the fact that banks needed a digital transformation to make communication with loan recipients more flexible and personalized — at a time when bank customers needed them most.  [Continue]

Outstanding Women 2021: First Interstate

Numbers often tell a story. At First Interstate Bank, for instance, women compose 72 percent of the bank’s 2,483-person workforce; 62 percent of the bank’s managers are female; more than half of the 22-member senior leadership team is female, and four women serve on the board of the Billings, Mont.-based bank. Three women — CFO Marcy Mutch, Chief Operating Officer Jodi Delahunt Hubbell, and Chief Human Resources Officer Rachel Turitto — sit on the bank’s nine-person executive team; another three — Lorrie Asker, Jocelyn Lane and Tawnie Nelson — serve as regional presidents, collectively overseeing 1,378 people spread across the $18.4 billion bank’s six-state footprint.  [Continue]

Don’t let a bad decision derail your career

We likely have all encountered bad employment situations and (hopefully) emerged wiser on the other side. I once took a job at a financial education company that was conveniently located near my home. I realized — before the end of my first week — I’d made a terrible mistake. I have a friend who likes to say “nothing is wasted” and this is certainly true when we encounter unfair or abusive workplace cultures (provided the experiences don’t break us). [Continue]

Outstanding Women 2021: Anita Drentlaw

Just before the pandemic struck, Anita Drentlaw began overhauling the culture at New Market Bank. As president and CEO of the bank, Drentlaw wanted to develop a commitment to leadership at the $190 million bank, located on the south side of the Twin Cities metro. Developed by an ex-Marine, the program she implemented at the Elko Market Bank focused on creating a leadership mentality among its graduates rather than situation-specific training. It’s helped create a unified culture with buy-in from all participants. [Continue]

​​Innovation must be built on foundation of trust

The financial services industry has experienced rapid technological change [which] continues to encourage new ways of interacting with and serving customers. Such innovation creates important opportunities for banks of all sizes. When banks can be agile in developing relationships with third-party providers to meet unique customer needs, they can find their own paths to innovation. [Continue]

Outstanding Women 2021: Maureen Jorgensen

To be authentic, according to Maureen Jorgensen, is to be present. Present with yourself and present with those around you. Jorgensen, executive vice president of retail sales and service at Wausau, Wis.-based Peoples State Bank, and one of BankBeat magazine’s 2021 “Outstanding Women in Banking,” holds authenticity as one of her core values; but it hasn’t always been easy to practice.  [Continue]

Can bank ATMs be adapted to offer Bitcoin?

I recently visited my neighborhood bodega for some paper towels. Okay, okay, it was for some beer, but this trip held a surprise. Still covered in its protective plastic film was a yellow, beehive-themed machine wedged next to the Haagen-Dazs freezer: The Bitcoin Depot. On second thought, maybe the design theme is hornet. Using this machine, you can buy a number of differently branded crypto currencies with other currencies. I had read about them like one reads about UFOs, but I’d never seen one in the wild.  [Continue]

Outstanding Women 2021: Stephanie Christian

Stephanie Christian immediately knew banking was the right fit. A Webster City, Iowa, high school student in 2002, she landed a drive-thru teller gig at WCF Financial Bank through her school’s work program. The position sparked her desire to learn more about finance and to serve her community. Christian’s love for community banking quickly developed, fueling her to eventually make a 200-mile daily round trip. [Continue]

How to provide personalization at scale

A personal touch has always been the name of the game — and a competitive advantage — for community banks. Yet, it can also feel that personalization has to be sacrificed in the name of growth. A personalized experience aligns perfectly with community banking, but how can banks collect the information and deliver this type of result across thousands of customers and multiple channels? [Continue]

Outstanding Women 2021: Tammy Sexton

When the Cambridge, Neb., branch of First Central Bank McCook caught fire early one Sunday morning in June 2016, it could have turned into a crippling event. Instead, up stepped branch president Tammy Sexton, who promptly dug into the to-do list getting a temporary branch set up. That facility, initially held in a community center meeting room, was up and running by Monday afternoon, less than 48 hours after the start of the fire. [Continue]