Most evenings, weather and schedule permitting, I take our dog out for a walk at dusk. Merrell (she is the small furry one in the picture above) and I walk on a golf course alongside a tidal river. It is a lovely place for a quiet, reflective walk. At least for me it is. Merrell, on the other hand, tends to run all over the place in search of goodness knows what. Some of things I reflect upon will end up in this blog. Hopefully they are worthy of your time and interest. If they spark an interest, I hope you will let me know by commenting. This post will be about banking in general, and community banking in particular.
Since 1978 I have been “a banker” and I have worked in banks large (the first 21 years of my career) and small (the last 14 years of my career). I have come to like small a lot more than large. At my small community bank our staff is asked to help customers follow their path to prosperity. We train our staff to assist customers and give our staff the time to get to know our customers so they can help them. We find out what our customers need and then provide it, we do not set product sales quotas based upon what would most benefit the bank. Our staff is also active in the community – raising money, volunteering, serving on boards. We believe this contributes to the quality of life in our communities. We provide our staff with good pay and benefits, training, and advancement opportunities. That is likely the reason our staff made us one of Maine’s Best Places to Work.
A well-run community bank is an important part of the communities it serves; providing banking services to households and businesses, supporting community organizations, and allowing employees to have meaningful careers. Despite there being a lot of negative press for our industry, I am proud to be a (community) banker.