When I became managing editor of the publication now known as Callahan’s Credit Union Strategy & Performance in late 2012, the role came with big shoes to fill. Callahan produced the first issue of CUSP, as it was formally known, back in 2006 to serve as a platform for us to cover not just the newest quarterly data trends but also verified, actionable strategies from leading credit unions that could be adapted and implemented by other peers in the industry.
Over the years, we’ve profiled small credit unions that think big, big credit unions that think local, and even credit unions in the middle of critical reinventions — through mergers, rebranding, charter expansions, product refreshes, member additions, and countless other means.
Likewise, although the heart and intent of CUSP has remained true since its founding, my predecessors and even my own team have introduced a number of exciting changes to this publication over the years. These include:
The Anatomy Series: Started in 2009, these top-to-bottom blueprints of high-performing credit unions examine what about that institution’s leadership, technology, culture, marketplace, and operations differentiates it from other FIs. And we gather our insight first-hand from executives during on-site visits.
Diversions: Also introduced in 2009, Diversions allowed Callahan to expand its scope of best practices covered to not only credit unions but also other industries. Topics covered so far have included everything from Apple, to music, to movies, to competitive barbeque competitions.
The integration of Technology@CU: What started as a separate sister publication for CIOs, CTOs, and other resident “gear heads” transitioned into a dedicated section of CUSP in 2013 after we realized everyone needs exposure to new ideas in this space, not just full-time technologists.
New Front Of Book features: From 2014 to 2015, we introduced lessons from member and employee online company reviews, executive Q&As on the nature of leadership, economic recaps from the mind of economist Dwight Johnston, and state-level analysis paired with the home state of our Anatomy credit union.
An Ongoing Visual Overhaul To Industry Performance: Starting in 2013 and continuing today, we’ve steadily honed the edge on our Industry Performance section to provide more detailed analysis and insights along with a varied, visual presentation that helps bring to life the stories behind the data.
Now, after three years, I’m transitioning into a new role here at Callahan & Associates, one focused on helping you, our clients, take advantage of all the features, benefits, and solutions that are part of your Callahan partnership.
In many ways, I see this as a continuation of what we always set out to accomplish each issue of Strategy & Performance and at Callahan as a whole — to give credit unions access to the information, ideas, and answers they need to succeed in an ever-changing industry and world.
So now dear readers, I leave you in the very capable hands of Rebecca Wessler, our editor-in-chief, who will manage the publication moving forward. And I look forward to working with you in new and exciting ways in 2016!