Ned Miller and his team at MZ Bierly Consulting have worked with several of our clients and we are always impressed by their business banking acumen.
Guest post by Ned Miller, MZ Bierly Consulting
They don’t spend enough time with average performers. Sales Managers like to hang around with their best people; high performers remind them of themselves! (They also have massive recognition needs—”Hey, boss, let me tell you what I just did…”) Chronic low performers also command attention—often an exercise in futility. Who gets left out? The 70% of the sales team whose performance could probably benefit most from coaching.
Tom Zayko and Ric Carey, Directors at Peak Performance Consulting Group, were interviewed recently by SNL Financial. To them, banks are overemphasizing expense reduction efforts at the cost of engaging with customers — interactions that could lead to greater, more profitable relationships. Zayko and Carey propose leveraging the branch network to make it a more effective transaction point with customers, marrying data about channel usage and current products to customize offerings. They encourage banks that have been focused on cost cutting through branch optimization and investments in technology to try a different tactic: talking to retail and small business customers and tailoring services and packages to their needs.
This is a modified version of the SNL Financial article.
What is your read on 2013 so far and what do you think will be an area of interest for banks?
This article was originally published in BAI Banking Strategies on January 11, 2013
Banks have the opportunity to nearly double their business banking profitability by digging deeper into small business sub-segments to find unmet needs.
BY RIC CAREY AND DAVID KERSTEIN
It is accepted wisdom throughout the industry that small businesses represent banks’ best opportunity for higher spreads, improved fee income and superior relationship profitability. Yet we find that few banks are actually succeeding in doing what it takes to effectively penetrate this segment and unlock the profit potential.
It’s not for lack of trying. Many banks put serious money behind their commitment to small business – primarily by staffing up on lenders and increasing marketing support.
And it is an exciting time to focus on the small business banking segment. Our research that probed deep into the sub-segments of small businesses reveals that banks can provide huge value. Thanks to new channel advances and advanced analytics, banks have more to offer than ever and small businesses have urgent banking needs that go unmet.
But to do so, bankers must re-think old assumptions about customer needs, channel preferences and marketing tactics.
I am very pleased that two well-known bankers/strategists: Ric Carey, formerly with Umpqua Bank, and Tom Zayko, formerly with Citigroup, have joined Peak Performance Consulting Group as Directors.
As EVP and Head of Retail Banking for Umpqua Bank, Ric managed Umpqua’s internationally acknowledged best-in-class community banking program. Additionally, he has particular expertise in Small Business Banking.
Tom is an expert at identifying growth opportunities and creating high performing marketing and sales strategies. His work includes developing specific competitive and growth strategies based on individual market potential. In addition, he was responsible for creating a unique survey program that gathers customer feedback in real-time.
Ric and Tom bring tremendous expertise to our clients, having led their banks in strategies that achieved revenue growth with superior profitability and improved distribution effectiveness. With long careers in banking, they understand the challenges the industry faces today, and they know how to deliver bottom-line results. In addition, they expand our geographic coverage: with Ric on the West Coast and Tom focused on the Mid-Atlantic and New England area, we are better able to serve our growing client base.
But, as they say on TV, “wait, there’s more!” Go here for the full release from BusinessWire.
This article was originally published in BAI Banking Strategies on Oct. 19, 2012
Whether they want to stay in business for the long term or sell at an attractive valuation, community bankers need strategies to generate revenue growth.
“Without a growth strategy, you are dead in the water,” said Chuck Sulerzyski, CEO of Marietta, Ohio-based Peoples Bank. And that pretty well sums up the mood at a panel discussion I moderated at the recent BAI Retail Delivery 2012 entitled “Winning Strategies for Community Banks.”
While each of the three bank CEOs participating in the discussion serves different markets with different challenges, they all agreed on growth as the key imperative. If you want to stay in business for the long term, you’ve got to be able to grow revenue. Likewise, if you want to sell your bank, you need a growth story to warrant an attractive multiple. In the face of broad industry challenges – sluggish economic growth, limited capital, higher regulatory burden, shallow yield curve – what are these banks doing to generate that revenue growth?
Recently David Kerstein, President, Peak Performance Consulting Group and Buck Bierly, President, MZ Bierly Consulting conducted a series of 3 webinars designed to help branch managers and retail leaders develop best-in-class sales practices. This is an excerpt from webinar #2.
For more information, or to register for access to the archive version of these webinars please contact email@example.com
What we’re looking at on this slide is an actual job description currently posted for a personal banker by one of the top ten banks. I won’t read it all through but this is word-for-word, job description for a personal banker.
Think about how it emphases some of the things that we’ve talked about today.
“Your role is to build long-term relationships, to go out into the community and call on clients and businesses.” This is for a personal banker!
“To meet and exceed your goals, to acquire 100% of the customer’s business, use profiling tools to identify cross-sale opportunities, manage your scorecard, pitch in and help others work with them to enhance their ability.”
In other words, identify opportunities for referrals to other parts of the bank.
“To work as part of a team and help it be more successful.”
It is not only that we’ll provide training, but it’s up to you to learn our products. In other words, not all of the burden is on us to give you that consistent product knowledge — you have to take an active role so that you’re educated in terms of what you need for your customers.
If you think about this in terms of a guide, in terms of setting expectations, some of the things that we talked about are some of the things that many financial institutions and many of the larger ones are trying to embed into their process.
If you look now at the next slide, I want to talk about the idea that sometimes simple is better and I would tell you that I’ve got a very simple way of being able to tell whether a branch has a strong sales culture.
If I walk into the break room and I look to see if there is a whiteboard or some chart in terms of how this branch is doing, so that everybody gets that information. They don’t have to look up the reports and try to understand them. They see it visually immediately, as you can see from the examples on this slide.
And what I always liked about the whiteboards is that it is a simple technique that you can implement for just a few dollars — buy and put up a whiteboard in your branch.
As a sales person, when I make a sale, I go in and I update how I did, how I contributed to that branch, how we’re moving the goals forward. Buck walks in to get a cup of coffee and he sees that I made some extra sales and it might motivate him or he might ask me, “What did you do? How did you do that?”
This way everyone see how they are contributing to that overall branch goal. You can see some great examples here in these pictures.
So, sometimes, simple ways of doing this, of building that teamwork, are highly effective in terms of creating those incentives and recognition and the team participation that gets your branch where you need it to go.
And that means that you don’t have to have elaborate sales reporting. You don’t have to have excessive contact management or CRM-type systems. You can do this very simply starting tomorrow. Very good.
Exactly. You don’t have to wait for all of that to be in place.
That’s right. So, let’s summarize here if we could, okay?
So, the top take-aways.
It’s about building deep relationships, not just selling more products.
Sustained performance requires a disciplined process. Who do we call on? What do we do? How do we measure success? And then finally, it’s not just about training. It’s about consistent coaching and follow-up, it’s getting the right people in place.
It’s about transmitting best practices. How can we learn and continue to improve as an organization?
And it’s about recognizing the behavior that is moving us forward and achieving success. It’s not just about giving people a bigger paycheck, it’s about recognizing their performance and encouraging people who are doing the kinds of things that are helping your organization to be successful.
So, with that, Buck, let me turn it back to you and I know you want to talk about the next webinar that we have coming up.
We do. And you know, before we leave this though, I just want to make sure that people are hearing some of the things that you said so carefully here and that is, there are a couple of things you can do, starting tomorrow, which do not require extensive training, do not extensive electronics or technology or anything.
One is to start changing the conversation. Giving your people a few questions they can answer go beyond product features.
Number two, think about relationship profiling. If you’ve never seen a relationship profile, send us an email and we will send you one of the consumer relationship profiles that our clients use and you could take a look at it and say, “Gee whizz, could we start asking these kinds of questions?” Not all at once, but over a period of time.
And here’s the third thing, an onboarding process that has a heavy focus on the first month and the first year and we stay in front of these people proactively and we measure that stuff using a whiteboard in the break room.
I mean these are incredibly simple things to do that have a huge impact.
If you’re not doing these things, think about putting them in place because if your team is focused and your team is performing well, it frees up your time as a branch manager to get out on the streets and go after those highly-profitable small businesses relationships.