Make dreams happen. We call our employees people. We call our people dream-makers. Our tag line is, ‘Make dreams happen.’ We believe that we are here not to open checking accounts or make loans, we are really here to facilitate dreams for our customers and communities.
We get very personal with a small group of people and say, “Tell us about your dreams’ and ‘How can the bank help you achieve those dreams?’ We call them dream-making sessions. We are hoping and trusting that by us conducting those sessions internally, our people will then conduct those sessions with customers.
We want to create a level of intimacy with our customers where they feel that we care about what their dreams are and that they care about us and what we’re doing enough that they’re happy to refer family to us, customers to us.
Put people first. We have spent quite a bit of time and we give a lot of attention to people practices. We truly believe that the way you achieve customer satisfaction and the way you achieve financial performance long-term is through your people.
Your people are the ones who are going to be interacting with your customers, and they are interacting and living in the communities where you want to do business. It has to start with having best-in-class practices.
We added community service paid time off. They get 16 hours a year for community service that they are paid for. We try to inspire people to serve in organizations and causes that are aligned with the major causes that the bank supports.
People are seeing that we are helping them and giving them avenues to be active in the community, as well as have flexibility with their time.
Create dialogue. We do an annual formal survey of our people, just to see what their level of satisfaction is. And then we do mini-surveys throughout the year, we call them pulse surveys, just to make sure that we are tracking how our people are feeling about important issues, so that we can react in time and not depend on an annual survey. The participation rate in those surveys is 94 percent, which is unheard of.
We have a whole set of programs to make sure that the communication with our people is very strong., not only that senior management is talking to people, but those vehicles of communication allow people to talk back, so that we can have dialogue.
We have what we call town halls with our people, and they all come together and we share the good and the ugly. These are structured sessions, but they are very informative, and we open them for all of our people in every region.
Define your goals. We engage our people through all of that and also what we call shared agreements. At the beginning of every planning cycle, our people participate in helping us create what are our top goals, our top objectives for that three-year period.
We call those shared agreements, and we organized those around four pillars people, customers, community and financial performance. Each pillar has three or four very high-level goals.
One of our goals in the community pillar is to have 100 percent participation of our people using their community paid time off. Another goal is to have 100 percent giving of our officers to the Banco Popular foundation.
Establish a vision. We have a clear vision of what we want to do and become, which is to become the premier community bank in each of the markets that we serve. We engage with our people around, ‘What does it mean to become the premier community bank?’ We have the shared agreement that guides us in terms of, ‘Are we making progress of hitting those shared agreements, and therefore, our vision?’
We do believe that engaged people will result in engaged customers. It takes time, it won’t happen overnight, but we see a very high correlation between improvement in people surveys and improvement in customer surveys.
Remember, it’s not about you. Submerge your ego. It’s about the vision. It’s about the team. It’s about the goals we have together as an organization. The CEO and the senior management in general need to submerge their ego and make sure it’s not about them and it’s not about them looking good individually.
It is about building great teams so that at any point in time, you can be succeeded and the organization can move on successfully. There are great CEOs out there who are successful only during their tenure because they are highly capable individuals and can probably move mountains, but it’s mostly because of their influence.
But they did not necessarily create a great team behind them.
HOW TO REACH: Banco Popular North America, (800) 377-0800 or www.bancopopular.com