Boost Your Leadership Skills This Fall: 5 Strategies for Success

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In Autumn’s cloak of colors, like a pirate in disguise,

It sneaks upon us, robbing focus from our eyes.

We chart our course for New Year’s goals, so clear,

But fall’s distractions hijack, causing us to veer.

The fall season is typically reserved by credit unions to set clear objectives and strategies for the New Year. Only, let’s talk about something that always seems to bubble up: leadership fatigue. During these holiday months your focus must contend with heighten member demand, employee leave and time off, financial reporting, annual performance evaluations and employee reviews, party planning, gift buying and, oh yeah… family needs.

Before the holiday hustle, let’s take a timeout right now to sharpen our leadership skills. Here are five strategies to help credit union leaders like yourself elevate your leadership game.

Mindset

A strong mindset allows you to steer your team through the end-of-year distractions with confidence. Analyze the story in your head. Are you being closed-off and self-centered? Perhaps you have self-doubt or a pessimistic inner dialogue about yourself or your team. Or maybe you have unrealistic expectations and are setting yourself up for disappointment.

One way to develop a stronger mindset is to examine the routine within your routine. Look beyond the surface of everyday challenges and examining the deeper, often hidden, elements that could be eroding your outlook.

Inspect

Inspect how your strategies are implemented by the frontline team at your credit union. Are your team members’ behaviors aligned with your vision? It’s this time of year where you’ll find those who become less engaged with the credit union and those who are truly team players. Regular check-ins and feedback loops can ensure everyone is on the same page.

Attitude

Are you having a bad day or a bad attitude? Identify what’s impacting your attitude and address it. And understand this: How you experience outside factors is 100% within you. Be a driving force that inspires and motivates your credit union.

Limits

Time is your most precious resource as a leader. Recognize that you can’t do it all. Set limits on tasks that don’t contribute significantly to your goals and block out time so you can think strategically. Be wary of distractions, delegate effectively and concentrate on what truly matters.

Take it to the next level and encourage your entire credit union to do the same. By eliminating non-essential distractions and focusing on high-impact activities, you can maximize your productivity. What tasks are your team doing that could be eliminated or automated?

Collaboration

It’s amazing that at a time when we should come together, we often feel the most apart. Everyone seems on edge as their time is limited. Do you ever find there’s forced cheerfulness? Reflect on how you can create a more inclusive and enjoyable experience for all involved. When you establish purposeful relationships, you’ll drive and sustain more desirable outcomes.

As credit union leaders, these practices will not only enhance your leadership skills but also drive success for your organization.

With holidays and festivities, our path does sway,

Like treasure-seeking pirates, we lose our way.

Yet as the leave fall, remember, we can reclaim,

Our goals and dreams, to steer our ship again.

Embrace the season of change and growth.

As Vice President of Brand Experience for Your Marketing Co., Frank Allgood works with credit unions to develop strong leaders, create effective training programs, and build powerful brands. Want to connect? Call 864.326.8740 or email frank@yourmarketingco.com.

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Reh Harvey

Vice President of Digital Strategy

Reh Harvey, our Vice President of Digital Strategy, leads with diligence and fervor. Having previously been a member of Team YMC, he is excited to return to such an amazing culture and even more amazing people (his words)! Through his experience in the marketing world, he’s found the key to success is to stay on the cutting edge and to always keep evolving.
 
Although originally drawn to marketing for its lack of math, Reh now finds himself doing more math than he would’ve bargained for. But his self discipline and positive attitude make it easy for him to laugh and take it in stride. Hoping to one day visit Japan and enjoy some premium Sushi, Reh lives life by his creed: Be a good human. Do good work. And above all, just keep going.

Hailey Madej

Graphic Designer

As YMC’s in-house Graphic Designer, Hailey possesses an eye for detail and a drive to innovate. It’s no surprise though since being creative runs in the family! Inspired from an early age by her mom’s work as a Graphic Designer, Hailey is a seasoned expert whose talents bring vitality and accessibility to every project. As a UX/UI designer, she expertly blends the intuitive and the creative for all to enjoy.
 
In addition to the occasional freelance project, Hailey also lends her abilities to supporting art initiatives within her community, such as the Belleville Mural Project. Her favorite aspect of joining the YMC team is the friendly, uplifting culture and breadth of design tasks. When it comes to marketing, she believes in pushing boundaries and maybe breaking some rules to capture her audience’s attention. Her advice to those just starting out? “Always seek quality over quantity.”

Dexter Ochoa

Development Assistant

When it comes to blending logical thinking and creative problem solving, Dexter’s abilities are undeniable! Beginning his career as a Web Developer, he’s no stranger to the wide world of Marketing and Advertising. Calling Biñan City in the Philippines home, Dexter has a burning desire to visit the Alpine peaks and valleys of Switzerland. While that journey may be far off, he is still no stranger to international travel. While visiting Japan, he was able to enjoy his favorite delicacy: Sushi and Sashimi. He also learned unexpected facts about Japanese Yen, specifically that it has special markings for the blind to know its value!

Living life by his motto to “Do good even if the world is unfair,” Dexter would also advise his younger self, “It’s hard, but you’re doing good!” Whether he’s enjoying a cup of coffee in the morning or the occasional Pale Pilsen in the evening, Dexter is eager to work with the talented professionals of YMC, and we’re just as eager to add his talent to the team as well! His marketing words of wisdom? “Be creative, and just do what you want!”

Andrew Wyche

Copywriter

Hailing from the NC state capital (that’s Raleigh if you didn’t know), Andrew is YMC’s Copywriter extraordinaire. That’s why he knows that “The verb form of ‘reconnaissance’ is ‘reconnoiter.’ The former is, strictly speaking, a noun.” Seriously, he knows his words and he’ll use those words to get bold and weird (in a good way) with his copy. Fuelled by a love for pasta, shellfish, a good single malt, or a meal consisting of all three, Andrew navigates life with a motto engraved in his heart: “Choose kindness. Always.” It is this guiding principle that has led him to explore the realm of marketing, driven by a desire to connect with people in meaningful ways. As he continues to chase his dreams, one bucket list item stands out above the rest – a pilgrimage to Scotland. With his heart set on adventure and his pen poised for creativity, Andrew’s journey is far from over.

Alex VanHaasteren

Senior Web Developer

Alex is YMC’s Senior Web Developer and, as the title suggests, she is an absolute pro! While she initially started in graphic design – working long and hard to expertly bring concepts to life – she also felt drawn to technology and applying her natural ability to problem solve. Web Development proved the perfect blend of her creative passion and technical savvy.

When Alex is out with friends – including her YMC colleagues – she’s up for Greek cuisine or some good pulled pork BBQ washed down with Diet Coke. Or an Old Fashioned, if the occasion demands. Someday, she hopes to go to Africa on a safari. Hopefully she’ll see a giraffe in the wild, because – as she’s pointed out – its neck is too short to reach the ground!

When she isn’t jamming out to T-Swift, she’s happy to impart some marketing words of wisdom, “Aim to create something unforgettable.” For day-to-day inspiration, she would remind you of two fundamental truths: You decide your happiness, and Ice cream is its own food group—not just a dessert.

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