Credit Union Boards Drive Impact with Focused Questions to CEOs
May 7, 2019
When asked to identify how their role as board chair has impacted their credit union today versus five to 10 years ago, a panel of large credit union board chairs unanimously agreed that questions to their CEOs focusing on central strategies had the greatest benefit — operational conversations were best left to the CEO and her or his team of executives.
Similarly, when asked what types of questions from their boards helped balance governance and execution, CEOs from several dozen additional credit unions indicated that “focus” and “challenge” were of highest value in aligning oversight and implementation.
Strategic Link partner and Certified Speaking Professional, Jeff Rendel, works with credit unions to drive entrepreneurial results in leadership, sales, and strategy. His findings show that credit union boards seeking to add tremendous value for the CEO should become a master of questions that are focused and challenging.
“As a former industry regulator, financial services executive, and congressional lobbyist, Jeff Rendel has in-depth knowledge of credit unions,” said Northwest Credit Union Association Vice President of Strategic Resources, Jason Smith. “His expertise helps credit unions succeed in reaching their strategic objectives.”
Below, Rendel provides examples that will get your board started on the path of asking great questions.
What are our three most important areas of focus and strategy?
This helps the board concentrate on the overall direction the credit union is headed and gain a view of progress.
What risks should we be taking?
A conservative outlook is preferred, but credit unions need well-managed risk to grow. An analysis of risk and reward can increase the expected return for investment.
What is missing from these plans and ideas?
A board’s perspective can help refine ideas overlooked during the internal deliberation process.
What results transpire through growth stages?
Different scenarios allow your board to perceive the bottom line potential of strategies.
Are we moving forward at the same pace as members?
Innovation, access, and relevance come into play every day.
Are we staying true to our mission?
Every credit union’s mission statement reads differently but states the same message: to serve members.
What does the CEO need to deliver long-term results?
This will inform the board what it will take to execute a plan.
How can the board help the CEO grow?
Ask the CEO what he or she needs to become a better CEO. Investing in your CEO is an investment in your credit union.
Asking great questions of your CEO, with impactful results for members in mind, provides value to all parties as they focus on leading strategically, and with intent.
For more information about Jeff Rendel’s entrepreneurial approach to helping credit unions, contact NWCUA Vice President of Strategic Resources, Jason Smith. To learn more about Strategic Link’s partnership with Jeff Rendel, visit its webpage.