Here Now More Than Ever
By Claire Stenger, Client Relationship Analyst
MDT believes there is great value in spending face-to-face time with our clients for the benefit of the overall relationship. And speaking on behalf of my fellow Client Relations team members, this year we are missing our in-person visits! We all look forward to bringing back the “good ol’ days” when traveling is actually a thing again. COVID-19 has forced all of us to make many changes in how we live and work, and not meeting in person with our clients has been one of many disappointing and frustrating changes.
Like many of you, we are currently working remotely and in many cases alongside some new “co-workers” (kids, spouses, dogs, cats, etc.), and we are finding new ways to stay connected to the outside world. We are all teleconferencing, Zooming or Webexing and, while it is not the same, we try to look for the positives in the current way we’re interacting with others. This distancing has given us a more personal perspective on one another, be it with our co-workers or our clients. Seeing someone sporting the overdue haircut or favorite loungewear on that Zoom call or hearing the sounds of home life in the background brings to the mix a little of the personal side of people, and that is kind of refreshing and even humorous at times. We all need a little humor these days, right?
So how have the operations of Client Relations changed and maybe more importantly, how have they stayed the same?
Our commitment as CRMs is the same: We are committed to listen, communicate and be responsive to our clients’ needs, and this is especially important now, in these ever changing times. When MDT began the transition to working remotely, our clients were making the same change for themselves and their sheltering-in-place members. In many cases, credit unions were required to implement new products and additional technology to best serve their members. Through this process, we have continued to work with clients as well as internal resources to ensure we are meeting expectations, gathering feedback and responding where needed. Our credit unions have done an amazing job adjusting to the changes required to serve their members. While there have been similar changes across our client base as a whole because of COVID-19, our goal as CRMs is to continue to understand and appreciate the current situation of each client so we can provide the appropriate guidance and product solutions.
One of our top priorities as CRMs during “business as usual” times is to stay connected with our clients by personally visiting them twice a year. We believe it is a key component regarding both the strength of our partnership and of understanding what our clients want to accomplish both short and long term. When travel ended due to COVID-19, we shifted gears to connecting via conference calls and Zoom meetings. We also have frequent communication via email and phone to keep a pulse on what is happening with our clients on an ongoing basis. There are still short and long term projects taking place, and credit unions continue to explore the latest technology and improving their current offerings to their members. In fact, our clients seem to be busier than ever!
Another way many of us normally connect is through conferences so, like many of you, we missed that valued time together this year, but we made the most of it by taking advantage of some tremendous learning opportunities at the virtual MDT Connect and Symitar SEC conferences. The upside to the virtual conferences is that they allowed more people to attend since travel expenses were not a factor and registration fees were waived! Another benefit that credit unions may now experience because of the virtual events is that those dollars initially allocated for travel may be shifted to the allocation of new or upgraded products. As CRMs, we continue to get questions about products discussed during conference sessions and requests for further discussions and demos.
At MDT, we remain committed to our client partnerships and to ensuring you have everything you need to serve your members both today and tomorrow. Though the way we interact in Client Relations has changed, the commitment and connection remain the same. We are optimistically looking forward to seeing you in person in 2021!