Demographic Shifts Provide Challenges, Opportunities

In addition to ethnic changes, the U.S. is also experiencing dramatic social change.

September 18, 2012
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While the U.S. established its reputation as a melting pot centuries ago, the nation is more diverse today than ever before.

And with this mélange emerges credit unions’ latest challenge: reaching and engaging a more diverse populace, according to CUNA’s 2012-2013 Credit Union Environmental Scan.

The most significant demographic trends influencing credit unions:

In addition to ethnic changes, the U.S. is also undergoing dramatic social change. The traditional “family” is a thing of the past. Credit unions need to adapt their products, services, and marketing materials to stay current with social changes.

Some key social changes:

Serving the changing American landscape will require credit unions to be technologically agile and adept in the use of social media platforms.

Women As Influencers

Mark Arnold
September 18, 2012 9:28 am
These are outstanding points--ones credit unions must consider. More than ever, women are influencing the financial decisions of the households. If credit unions want to reach new members, then target females (they'll bring the men along with them).

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Great article! Unfortunately, most employees don’t feel valued or appreciated by their supervisors or employers. In fact, research has shown that the predominant reason team members quit their jobs is because they don’t feel valued. This is in spite of the fact that employee recognition programs have proliferated in the workplace – over 90% of all organizations in the U.S. has some form of employee recognition activities in place. But most employee recognition programs are viewed with skepticism and cynicism – because they aren’t viewed as being genuine in their communication of appreciation. Getting the “employee of the month” award, receiving a certificate of recognition, or a “Way to go, team!” email just don’t get the job done. How do you communicate authentic appreciation? We have found people have different ways that they want to be shown appreciation, and if you don’t communicate in the language of appreciation important to them, you essentially “miss the mark”. Additionally, employees need to receive recognition more than once a year at their performance review. Otherwise, they view the praise as “going through the motions”. A third component of authentic appreciation is that the communication has to be about them personally – not the department, not their group, but something they did. Finally, they have to believe that you mean what you say. How you treat them has to match the words you use. If you are not sure how your team members want to be shown appreciation, the Motivating By Appreciation Inventory ( will identify the language of appreciation and specific actions preferred by each employee. You then can create a group profile for your team, so everyone knows how to encourage one another. Remember, employees want to know that they are valued for what they contribute to the success of the organization. And communicating authentic appreciation in the ways they desire it can make the difference between keeping your quality team members or having a negative work environment that everyone wants to leave. Paul White, Ph.D., is the co-author of The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace with Dr. Gary Chapman.

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