Community bankers who empower employees to make decisions have a
Customers want immediate answers. They don't want to hear that their
Equally important, the employee who is empowered to make decisions
But many big banks deny empowerment to their employees. That's why so
Of course, some large banks are exceptions to the rule.
I recently wrote about a superregional that seemingly empowered its
The customer, one of my friends, was refunded $43 on the spot. The bank
Was this an exception? Had this big bank empowered the employee?
Half my banking friends think so. They say the bank wanted the officer's
The other half figure the idea was to punish her for giving out $43
Another friend of mine is a lesson in the demoralizing effect of
This friend has worked for a bank for decades. He used to be an
"What happened?" I asked him recently. He had once been the No. 1 flag
Now, he said, he is under such pressure to cut costs and streamline
He said he used to tell top management what he needed for travel and
But now he can't even take $5,000 to reward employees who work late on
I asked him what caused the change. The answer probably won't surprise
"Wall Street," he replied.
Now, he said, the only thing his bank's management thinks about is the
He said it is especially difficult for employees in their late 40s, who
I compare that to banks that staff their branches in high-crime areas
Younger people could move to another bank. These older people have no
Employee empowerment helps community banks survive and thrive in a world
I vividly remember a friend at another superregional telling me of a
"This is not the company it used to be," the man explained.
Many of that bank's customers are likely to feel that way, and take