STOP! Motivating Bank Employees is a Waste of Time

Every banking conference I speak at or go to, they’re saying the exact same thing…CULTURE, CULTURE, CULTURE!

And there’s a good reason—culture is the leading predictor of future growth and profitability. Always has been, always will be.

It is no accident that when we see banks that have the very highest culture scores, they also have some of the best performance within their state. That is no accident.

So, let’s talk today about what are the myths about culture that everybody seems to get wrong, and that as a result of those myths, there is no breakthrough in the culture.

Myth number one: “You can make people happy.”

In fact, motivation is a racket. You can’t make anybody happy. People choose that happiness; it’s intrinsic.

Just the other day, my son sent me a wonderful little cartoon, and it had one guy who had a sign on his chest that said, “Happy,” and the other guy is saying to him, “Where’d you find that?” And this guy said, “I made it myself.” That’s exactly how happiness works.

But happiness comes as a result of people being purposeful, making a difference for the customer, feeling like they’re making progress every day.

Part […]

The Fast-Track to Consistent Profitable Growth

You’ve got a problem…

Your sales staff was lulled to sleep during the good times and those that are left, now years later, well, they don’t have the skills or the confidence to go snap up quality accounts and get them at a rate you can be proud of.

They sit in the office trapped, as if in a box of their own making, believing that it’s not possible to rapidly grow their portfolio with quality credits at premium pricing…that it’s not possible to win an account without matching rates.

Now, I’m going to show how good banks, and even some struggling banks, transformed their loan growth, growing faster than they ever had before. Doing it by only targeting A+ quality credits and winning those deals at premium prices.

If you want to win more deals, you must be more valuable to a prospect (even at a higher rate) than another bank. And you’ve got to have a way to communicate your value to that prospect. You need a Unique Selling Proposition.

Rosser Reeves says it’s critical to have the right three elements for it to be a Unique Selling Proposition, or a USP. Let’s cover those three […]

For Community Bankers Who Want More Sales

So, congratulations! You now have mobile banking. That’s good news…and it’s also horrible news.

You probably haven’t thought about the fact that now that we have half of the lobby traffic already removed from our banks, we’re about to drive away the rest of it.

So, something is going to have to change…and what that is, is that your people will need to be getting out and having conversations.

And they can’t have just any conversations—they have to have meaningful, powerful conversations with your most successful customers who are affluent and who don’t want their time wasted.

Now, how the heck is that going to work when we still haven’t been able to get 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 cross-sales on average on a new customer who came in to buy? How are you ever going to get your people prepared to have the conversations on a quarterly basis—at a minimum—to make sure they keep that relationship sticky and they own all the business?

Well, it’s going to take some changes. And it has to start with confidence.

So what’s step number one?

Step number one is that you have to figure out how to get cross-sales up in the […]

Are You Really Selling?


I’ve got a question for you: are your people really selling?

You see in a snow storm, all the plows are busy. The snow plowing companies answer their phones, they take jobs that competitors can’t do because they’re too busy, and everybody thinks they are selling, but they’re not really selling—there happens to be a snow storm.

Right now there’s a bit of a snow storm in banking. Times are relatively good, so people are calling you and asking you to do business. There’s a danger in that and the danger is your people are not doing what they need to be doing. What they need to be doing is calling on your next best customers, as opposed to being reactive, dealing with the ones in front of them, that are coming to them just looking to see if perhaps you would do business with them. Those walk-ins end up wanting to negotiate rate, they tend to have other banks that they’re looking at at the exact same time, and oftentimes they are not the key prospects and the only sales job ever really done is when it’s taken to credit committee to say, “Can we do […]

How to Avoid the Price-Matching Pandemic


Here’s the thing about price: matching price is an addiction. When you’re discounting, it has a debilitating future impact on so many different things. It sabotages your ability to recruit, hire, and train the very best. It deteriorates your best customer service efforts, because you can’t invest in the customer service that you have. It doesn’t allow for you to have cutting-edge products and services, because the money’s not there. You have no top-line products, and you are not a salable equity, because your multiple of book is reduced when people are looking at purchasing your bank.

It is a slippery slope. Regulars are ready to pounce. Get and keep those low-cost deposits is what they’re saying. There are some things you can do to protect yourself even if you’ve been on the slippery slope.

Dan Kennedy, a marketing guru, says that there are six things that impact price elasticity. Number one, who is selling—that’s you. Number two, who is buying—hmm, we’ve got to figure out the right prospects. Number three, where are they buying. Four, how are they buying. Five, the urgency of the purchase, and six, how and when are they paying for the purchase. […]