Find your platform and find a way to promote it

Writers looking for a book deal or agent representation learn rather quickly that success hinges on two things: Name recognition and a marketable platform. Most bankers don’t have name recognition outside of their communities or institutions, but a platform is clearly within reach and building one can be good for business. Not only can a platform position you as a thought leader, it can raise the visibility of your institution. [Continue]

Recruiting at rural banks requires holistic approach

Many aspects of industry consolidation are lamentable: Reduced access to services in sparsely populated areas and the diseconomies of scale (i.e., lack of personal service) are two that come to mind quickly. But what should we make of a changing landscape where there are fewer and fewer family-owned institutions? I sure hope family banks aren’t going the way of the family farm. [Continue]

ICBA goes bold with AI demo

The future, as they say, is here. Here being Nashville, Tenn., where on the second day of ICBA Live, the future was carried onto a stage in the form of Sophia, a robot draped in haute couture in the style of Audrey Hepburn, a female gendered artificial intelligence who listened and was capable of engaging … Read more

Attorney’s skill helps Wisconsin town reimagine itself

In 1993, Uniroyal Goodrich Tire Company announced it would close its Eau Claire, Wis., factory, costing the west central Wisconsin community 1,300 jobs. Not long after, SSI, a supercomputer startup bankrolled by IBM that was expected to add 1,000 tech jobs to Eau Claire, failed instead. It was a one-two punch that hobbled the traditionally blue-collar community of 65,000 just as Jeff Halloin was moving his family, including two-year-old triplets, back to town. [Continue]

Northern MN banker reflects on exurban Minneapolis acquisition

Fifteen years ago, Grand Rapids State Bank crossed the $250 million in asset mark to become the 40th largest bank in Minnesota. Around that time, Noah Wilcox, president, CEO and chair of the bank and its holding company, Wilcox Bancshares, gathered his board for strategic visioning. He anticipated ongoing industry consolidation and wondered how GRSB would grow — or what might happen if it did not. [Continue]