Simple Secret for Growing Net Interest Margin

Net Interest Margin Now

Blow Your Competitors Out of The Water

You’ve heard it before – the bankers who are STILL calling on clients asking hideously inept questions such as, “What kind of things are you looking for in a bank?” or “Tell me about your business,” or “What kind of things are keeping you up at night?”   UGH.

These slick and inept approaches from the 1980s sales training programs were somewhat effective back then, but they really don’t stack up in this competitive market—and they certainly don’t get the attention of small businesses who are running fast and running hard and really don’t have time to chit chat.

If you think today’s small business owner is going to stop and humor your setup line about what keeps him or her up at night—well, you probably haven’t tried it since jelly shoes and stirrup pants were in.

Instead, make sure that every time you start a conversation with a client, you have a list of stacked pains that will blow away the prospect—make them stop everything they are doing and spend time with you because they can’t imagine NOT […]

Just say NO to Strategic Planning Land Mines

Is your strategic plan the right plan—and one that can and will get completed?

If you’re like most bankers, you probably pulled your strategic plan together eight or nine months ago. But is everyone in the bank on a weekly process to make sure they all hit the outcomes?

You are hearing everywhere that those who run their banks like they ran them five years ago won’t make it in the not-so-distant future. Heck, based on the news reports over the past year, they may no longer be in business.

The same goes for the strategic planning process. Those who are still using the old “Mission Statement, SWOT, and Goals” approach with a nice book delivered at the end will be left in the dust by those who understand what the top two-percenters know.

They’re still doing yearly strategic planning—or every every two to five years. Top-performing banks are doing it quarterly and it is so system tight there is no way it won’t stay on schedule and get accomplished.

Of course, those people are even a bit ahead of the extremely unfounded approach of thinking strategic planning is taking last year’s budget and making alterations […]

The Easy 5-Step Formula to Get Your Bank’s Culture Back on Track

Culture is the leading predictor of future growth and profitability. Great news if you have a great culture—otherwise, not such good news.

After working with hundreds of banks over 24 years, I can say unequivocally that banks that turn around their cultures turn around their profits quickly. It is the leading indicator…and a beautiful and fast needle mover.

And with the abundant acquisition opportunities about to hit in 2013, you know the importance of getting your own house in order before you compound the situation.

So, what’s the problem?

According to Gallup organization research, the number of disengaged employees in the last five years has gone from 30 percent of the workforce to over 70 percent! It’s hard to imagine a more alarming statistical shift for the business world.

If that’s not enough to make you want to give up, 27 percent of the workforce is receiving treatment for mental health issues while uncountable others remain untreated. With 153 million prescriptions for antidepressants written each year, know you have a lot of people who are challenged every day. Even those who are being treated are still in pain, and they tend to push that pain and […]

The Proven Formula for Sales Meetings that Create Results

Is there anything worse than a bad meeting?  Anything?  Fine, yes, world hunger, soul-crushing poverty, and violence in the Middle East.  But in the midst of a truly bad meeting, it’s easy to convince yourself that all of those problems will be distant memories before the meeting EVER ENDS.

You’d think the jury was still out on what makes a meeting work or not work.  In fact, there are a few very simple guidelines that can mean the difference between an agonizing, clockwatching dronefest and a powerful, effective meeting that creates results.

First, let’s look at the three main features of a bad meeting:

  • It’s too long.  Is this a surprise to anyone?  The Bad Meeting Hall of Fame includes very few meetings that were too short.  Make every minute count.

  • Non-pertinent items are discussed.  You have an agenda […]

The #1 Reason Bank Acquisitions Fail

hink you’re ready for an acquisition? Think you’ve got a bullet-proof plan?

Imagine if you take a “bring-it-on-and-make-it-happen-no-matter-what” bank culture where people are passionate about what they do and combine it with a group with a “sit-behind-our-desks-until-we-need-Preparation-H, whine-and-complain-about-the-economy-and-being-too-busy” group. How’s that going to work? Without a “come to Jesus, we see the light” intervention, the likelihood of being able to save many of those people is slim.

And what a costly loss that is.

Nothing trumps culture. Culture means you don’t have middle management breakdown, because they know how to lead. Culture means you have a tight system of execution and you have made winning fun. Culture means you aren’t losing 37 percent of a manager’s day dealing with dysfunctional behaviors and low performance—the current sobering average.

Here’s the good news. Despite what you’ve heard, culture transformation doesn’t take two years. It can happen in a day. Keeping it moving forward…well, that takes more time.

Don’t even think of doing an acquisition without a plan to transform and transport the culture to a level where everyone says in unison, “Thank God Its Monday!—I LOVE my bank!”