Recently, I made the switch from a mega-national bank to DNB First, an authentically local, community-based bank in the Greater Philadelphia suburbs operating in the region since 1860. It’s been an absolutely wonderful experience and I am left wondering why it took me so long to make the switch!
Some well known mega banks deliver products, services and pricing nationally, and yet attempt to compete and win business on a local, market level. Few are successful in keeping the customer at the center, maintaining local focus and presence, while complying with national big-bank policies, procedures and expectations. Customers can get lost in the shuffle.
I came across this article about local banking and the impact it has on the economy, and the community we live and work in. The article highlights some of the obvious (and not so obvious) comparisons between community and mega-banks. Of course selecting a financial services partner is an important and highly personal choice. At the end of the day, consumers must work with those trusted professionals that are committed to helping them achieve their most important hopes, dreams and desires.
The article cites some pretty important distinctions to make when evaluating financial providers. Read more…..
Community-based banks have long played a critical role in the U.S. economy and this has never been more important than in today’s unprecedented times. The central principle driving community banks is “The Relationship”.
This approach provides customers financial services based upon the ongoing personal interactions that improve the flow of information, resulting in an understanding of all of your financial needs and allowing for customized solutions.
- Community bank executive officers, including the President & CEO, are typically accessible to their customers. Megabank CEOs are headquartered in far-away office suites with little customer dealings.
- Community banks focus attention on the needs of local businesses. Conversely, many of the nation’s megabanks are structured to place a high priority on serving large corporations and investment banking activities on Wall Street.
Community banks are strong supporters of local nonprofits both with their dollars and volunteer hours.
- Community banks channel most of their loans to their depositors’ neighborhoods, helping to keep local communities vibrant and growing. Megabanks may take deposits in one state and lend in others.
- Community bank executives and directors typically are deeply involved in local community affairs, while large-bank executives are likely to be detached physically and emotionally from the communities where their branches are located.
- Many community bankers are willing to consider character, family history and discretionary spending in making loans. Megabanks, on the other hand, often apply impersonal qualification criteria, such as credit scoring, to all loan decisions without regard to individual circumstances.
- Community bankers can offer nimble decision-making on business loans because decisions are made locally. Megabanks usually have limited loan decision-making authority at the local level.
- Community bank boards of directors are local businesspeople, leaders and your neighbors who often played a role in starting the bank. It’s unlikely that big bank corporate board members live, work or operate businesses in your neighborhood.