Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Pink Slips...

Now now, stop that!! 
Don't get so anxious! 

[We're not going to be talking about lingerie, so everybody just calm back down - okay! We have more serious business to discuss...]

As you've seen [link], CUNA has finally come forth with proposed bylaw amendments to implement "Choice" (or "optionality", if you speak "league-ish"), which will permit credit unions to join CUNA in the future, without requiring an equal commitment to a home state credit union league. To me, it looks like CUNA has, yet once again,  slipped up.

Proponents of "Choice" have called for change based on 1) the unsustainability of the existing CUNA/League structure, given the high costs borne by a rapidly shrinking number of credit unions; 2) the multi-state service areas of an increasing number of credit unions; and 3) the absence of a direct CU voice and dialogue at the national level.  

Opponents believe change will 1) endanger the political effectiveness of CUNA and the leagues at both the state and national levels; 2) create adverse competition among leagues; and 3) potentially weaken and fragment "the united front" credit unions claim to enjoy. Traditionalists have also counseled against too abrupt a rush to an untested model - "a slippery slope" - without extensive, considered discussion among credit unions. 

Both arguments have merit; and, as with most
things in life, the truth - "the right answer" - may well lie somewhere in between. Y'know a "Three Bears Solution" - not too hot, not too cold, ... 

But, CUNA seems to have arrived at a solution which combines the worst of all worlds!  CUNA's bylaw proposals appear slipshod - some would say reckless - by implementing "Choice", while consolidating power within the existing CUNA Board and central staff. Not exactly a formula for direct representation and better dialogue among credit unions at the national level! CUNA's weakness is not that it is too closely connected to the leagues; CUNA's weakness is that it is so thoroughly disconnected from credit unions - and has just proved that fact once again with this action.

You should take great notice that there is no clear timeline for the discussion and implementation of the proposed organizational reforms. No dialogue on structure, scope, purpose; no survey, no polls, no focus groups, no member interaction.
"Don't ask, just tell?"
Not even a 2016 "meeting of the minds" in Estes Park - heh, don't laugh, it worked in '34! But as cooperatives, guess we've outgrown all that.... or maybe it just slipped their minds.

What the leadership of CUNA - Board and staff - may have unintentionally "slipped into" with this vote on "Choice", is a referendum on their leadership
A real risk!
Assume it's clear, that if these proposals are voted down - which is entirely possible given all the recent controversy; the membership of CUNA will have delivered a clear message of "NO CONFIDENCE" in the current management and Board leadership.

Which would - in the real world - result in the delivery of a whole lot of...


(... and not the kind you get from Victoria's Secret!)


Anonymous said...

No leadership from the CUNA board. No leadership from Nussle. Sure as heck no leadership from the senior staff advising Nussle and the board. What is going on there?

Anonymous said...

Guess you saw that Victoria's Secret's CEO got a real pink slip today!