Laura Thompson is a retired SVP/CIO at the famous Orange County’s Credit Union. She inherited her passion for credit unions from her family, who have been involved with credit unions for decades. For her, credit unions, or careers in general, aren’t only about getting promotions and earning more money. They’re about broadening knowledge and fostering mutual respect among members and colleagues, no matter what industry they belong to.
According to Laura, knowledge is a never-ending journey that is a prerequisite for growth. She is happy to hear that there are student-run credit unions whose members and associates are highly motivated young people ready to help others and ensure a stable future. One issue: Many of them want everything, and they want it now. But good things come slowly, says Laura, and they pay off eventually.
Continuing the discussion, she suggests people should focus on becoming better at what they do instead of concentrating on the promotion itself. She also tackles the challenges faced by credit unions regarding technology and digital banking, adding that members still love credit unions despite their uneven tech implementation.
⚡ You have to keep up and not get set in your ways. Laura suggests that credit union employees should never stop learning and keep up with all the changes in technology and consumer preferences. “There are so many ways to learn. I think it’s important not to get stuck in your ways and think that you know everything just because you’ve processed loans for five years.”
⚡ The associates have to learn, grow and expand because the world is Credit union employees should be willing to learn and grow with the organization. That way, the credit union can grow and reach its full potentnial. “Orange County’s Credit Union has a lot of different resources and training opportunities for its people. But they have to be involved too and take the initiative. So it goes both ways.”
⚡ What consumers want is a 24/7 available digital banking app. Technology is a vital part of financial institutions, including credit unions. “Credit unions can’t take forever to make changes. Because consumers expect and say, ‘I need it now. I want to do this on my phone. And I want it 24/7.'”