There’s a lot of good going on around our city, but you’re not going to find it by watching the evening news. If you believe that all that is happening in the metropolitan area is captured at 5:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m., you’ll cower down in a corner of your house and never come out again. Too much bad news begins breeding a pervasive sense of negativity.
Last year in this very blog I spoke of the Credit Union taking the “Community” part of our name seriously. Our staff is out in full force meeting with the people in our “Community” that are creating change. Given that this blog is limited in space, I can’t even begin to approach the numbers of people that need recognition. Trust me, they’re out there in big numbers and the Credit Union is honored to be working with them side by side, day in and day out.
Just one example of good news that is near and dear to St. Louis Community Credit Union is the success stories happening in the public schools. Remember, St. Louis Community’s success is a direct result of our 66-year association with St. Louis Public Schools. What you don’t hear or see is how many people are working directly and indirectly without any fanfare to improve the educational opportunities in the school system. Volunteers, administrators, parents, teachers, counselors and business leaders are all lining up to provide human, technical and capital resources to help insure the success of our community’s young men and women.
Some days one feels as if we have “five loaves and two fish,” but folks continue to persevere nevertheless. The word “quit” isn’t in the vocabulary of these good people, and the kids react in kind. Sure, it’s easy to cast stones from afar. The newspapers, TV and radio broadcasts give you plenty of ammo to fire, but anybody can talk about what’s wrong. Be a hero; get involved. The future of our community needs you.
I’m a big fan of the idea that personal improvement comes through a couple of deep-seated beliefs found within one’s psyche. First, to truly be better tomorrow than today, one must be focused on success. People need what I call “success-filled expectations.” As my basketball coach would emphasize during free-throw shooting practice, “be the ball…be the ball.” In other words, expect the ball to go through the net. Yep, that‘s an expectation of success.
Second, to complement the expectation of success, a person must recognize a need for “cost-filled preparation.” In other words, one must put some “skin in the game.” Are you hard-wired to make the necessary sacrifices to reach your goals? Are you willing to pay the costs?
Hook the two together and you get “big dreams complemented by hard work.”
As an example, set a high expectation for improving your credit history. Don’t hunker down with a low score that results in high borrowing rates of interest. Bad credit is a very expensive proposition over a long period of time.
Secondly, you must pay the costs to clean up that credit report (both literally and figuratively). Collection accounts must be resolved. Spending habits must change. Credit activity must subside. Balances owed must be reduced. Payments must be made on time and consistent over many months, even years. You must curb your desires to open up new credit lines.
Create a symbiotic dance between these two ideas: (1) think success, and (2) sacrifice to get there. The net result will be a much improved credit score over time. That, of course, equates to less costs to borrow and more money back in your pocket.
Maybe St. Louis Community Credit Union can help? Let us know. If you grab onto the right idea of successfully turning your credit history around, then we’ll be there to help you with tools that can begin the about face. BALANCE and our new Credit Builder Loan are great places to start the turnaround.
Have you ever screwed up? Yeah, me too. Really Bad? Yep, you’re in good company. Most of the people I respect, and those I call friends, have at least once in their illustrious lifetime experienced a major malfunction – and that’s putting it lightly.
I learned a long time ago that when we fail, we have a couple of options. We can either be frozen by our failure or freed by our failure. We decide.
I’m pretty sure that rebounding from failure is inherent to our make-up. Think about when you were contemplating your first steps. Since you were probably too young to remember, let me help you out. You’d pull yourself up on the corner of the living room furniture, get a grin on your face from ear to ear, let go, and fall on your bottom. The entire room full of adults would applaud wildly at the sight of your failure. You’d give it another shot and another shot and another shot – all with the same enthusiastic response. You were freed by the failure and, as a result, you would start over with only one thing in mind – to achieve your goal.
As adults though, too many failures freeze us. Are you frozen by a bad credit score? Let me guess…nobody’s on the sidelines applauding wildly. As a result, you see no reason to undo what has happened. Thus the failure freezes us in a place where our standard of living suffers while we pay high rates and have limited access to credit.
How about freeing yourself from failure by taking important steps to correct your situation? Credit scores don’t “drop like a rock” overnight. Likewise, it takes time to start the number climbing again. St. Louis Community Credit Union’s Credit Builder Loan is coming soon. Look for this as a chance to free yourself from a previous failure. We’re applauding wildly for your success.
Change is a relative term. It means different things to different people. We all have varying views as to what the word change means. The “other side” of change is what bothers most people – call it fear of the unknown.
It’s key, however, that when an organization sets out to change, they enlist the support of every single employee. As St. Louis Community Credit Union moves into 2009, our 100-plus employees are prepared to move in concert in order that we can make the necessary changes to improve every member’s standard of living and better their lifestyle.
In 2009, St. Louis Community has assembled a team of employees that has great chemistry. Just like a great sports team, we all have a singular goal. We put our personal beliefs, likes and dislikes aside, and focus on what’s best for the members. Yes, we embrace change as a positive part of our corporate culture.
This year’s changes include a commitment to the development of new products. We want all of our members’ business, and if we need to change our approach to product development, we will. Changes to service will include a greater attention to answering phone calls in a timely manner. Changes will also occur to insure that we have the right staffing and scheduling during peak periods of office traffic.
While change may intimidate some people because of the unknown, our staff has committed to doing it the right way. We’ve committed to being on the same page. We will put forth a focused energy by and between our employees in all branches and all departments. As a result, our members will be the benefactors of change.