In the business world, “disruptor” has moved from its traditionally negative definition to a positive one – “to radically change, as by introducing a new product or service that creates a new market.” Disruption has become the new buzzword for what used to be (in ancient terminology) “thinking outside the box.”

How can credit unions leverage the power of disruption in day-to-day operations? Here are a few brilliant ideas we’ve come across lately:

Replace standard communications with handwritten – Email and even direct mail are standard and expected. How often do you open your postal mail and find a handwritten note these days? Of course this is impractical for large-scale messaging, but it could surprise and delight new members or new credit account holders.

Turn casual Fridays into themed events – Contributing funds to charity in exchange for wearing jeans is a time-honored tradition. But some institutions are now taking the opportunity to greet members in costumes and offering treats based on holiday or cultural events. (Game of Thrones, anyone?)

Turn your goals upside down – Based on a recent post we shared on Facebook, this can be a fun inversion for your staff goals. Rather than tallying new members or new loans, your team’s goal is to get 500 “no’s”. While this might seem counterproductive, it’s an unusual way of encouraging team members to ask every member at every touchpoint if they or someone they know needs your services.

You can’t ignore a box
– Several of our credit union clients have replaced their standard brochure folders and application envelopes with boxed member kits containing marketing, disclosures and premiums for new account holders. Similarly, some of our favorite appreciation programs now include “dimensional mail” – a fancy term for a gift box (examples: sunglasses for new youth members, kitchen tool sets for new mortgage holders, etc.)

How can we help you make a radical change for the good in your organization? We have more ideas — contact us today for more new perspectives!