Experiencing the CU Water Cooler Symposium.

CU Water Cooler - Annual SymposiumAnother Credit Union Water Cooler Symposium has come and gone, and it has matured into a thoughtful and even brave event. For me, it was a highlight of 2012 so far, and I think fair to say one of the best conferences I’ve ever attended.

I have this experience a lot at CU conferences where the things that seem like the most important things we as financial cooperatives need to discuss are far from the things that actually get discussed. We stick to what’s safe, and don’t get into the challenging issues that credit unions face, or, more importantly, the challenges that people in our communities face. Problems that credit unions were formed to address.

The people who are drawn to come to the Symposium for a variety of reasons were ready to talk about some of those big important issues and stay with them. From the first presentation right through to the final wrap up, discussion after discussion about the soul of credit unions kept emerging. They took a variety of forms. Superficially, the discussions may have been about branding, or leadership, or getting employees on side, but down deep they were all really about our mission and purpose. That was the great throughline to the Symposium this year.

And for so many of the presentations the audience was so present, you could hear a pin drop.

I’m going to work on a post for the CU Water Cooler site over the next couple of weeks in which I’ll formulate my thoughts and go into more detail. I just felt the need to put something out there to wrap up while the experience was still so fresh.

Thanks to all who were there.

8 thoughts on “Experiencing the CU Water Cooler Symposium.

  1. Sandy Pitkethly

    Your presentation was fantastic, William – it was very insightful and made everyone in the room ponder, probably for some time.

    Looking forward to seeing you all next year!

  2. Sooo sad I missed it. Next year for sure. Keep up the good work everyone. You are all my heroes.

  3. Bill,

    The CU WaterCooler is probably 10000000 light years ahead of CUNA and every league in the free world. But you lack a sense of fight. Tammy with CU Home Page wants the ABA there next year? You cant handle the ABA. I am glad you took some time to talk to one another. We are performing for a huge CU in Florida on Columbus day that took CU out of their name and in doing so, opted out of the make believe “CU movement”. How many sandwiches and bottles of water is the CU maketplace paying for this monday? You guys may put on a great show, but drink while Rome is burning and know this. Every year you do this show there are fewer Credit Unions in America. Is that the “movement” you keep talking about? Feel free to come on our radio show; you know the one the CU water cooler dropped, one that is still on the air drawing more listeners per week than you have ever had at all the CU Water Cooler events combined. For my part I was in West Texas last week at big BANK discussing a plan to expose big Texas CUs for the phony NPO status they cling to. If you have what it takes, join us on the air any time.


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