One year ago today I was sitting at a conference with my boss and a colleague, surrounded by two laptops, an i-Pad, and more smart phones between us than I could count. The day had finally arrived, and we were launching the much-anticipated Member Idea Exchange (MIX).
As I monitored (stalked?) the metrics in the system to see if anyone had visited or joined, a million thoughts were racing through my brain: Will anyone open the email? Will members “get” how cool this online community could be? Do they even want to talk to us? Will anyone want to join? What if nobody joins? What if it’s crickets?
It’s not an “If you build it, they will come” type scenario. We have to inspire them to WANT to.
Months and months of careful planning, design, development, delays, and some very literal blood (I’m klutzy), sweat (one of the rooms we did most of the work in ran about 85 degrees at all times) and tears (not only mine!) had finally culminated in the MIX being released into the wild.
Was it perfect? No. Is it now, a year later? No. But that’s the beauty of community, we can work together to continue to make it better, make it what we want it to be.
In fact, on the day of launch, we’d thoughtfully curated questions and ideas we wanted feedback on directly from you; thinking it was “so great” we were asking for this type of feedback.
Well, that plan changed almost immediately when to my tingling excitement and relief, you guys were joining the MIX, and sharing your own ideas and suggestions, anywhere you could find a place to post them. You told us loud and clear, ‘we want to tell you what we want from BECU.’
And you have.
As your community manager, there’s nothing I like more than taking your ideas and sharing them internally with our business partners. I can tell you, people inside BECU, all the way up to our executives, and across diverse divisions, truly care what you, our members think, and want to deliver what you want. Truly.
It’s not just for show, or so we can say we have an ‘online member community.’ It’s because we believe in the power of you, and your collective voices. You make us a credit union, and a better one at that.
I am asked weekly, if not daily: ‘What’s trending in the MIX?’, ‘Do you think this would be good to ask the MIX?’, ‘Have members said anything in the MIX about ___?’
It’s awesome, it really is. And if you don’t see it yet, hang in there, keep coming back and growing with us. While you may feel like we’re too slow in implementing your ideas, I can assure you that we’re listening, we’re focused, and we’re purposeful in moving forward with your ideas that resonate with the community.
So Happy One-Year Anniversary to our Member Idea Exchange and a huge thank you to all of you who have shaped it into the community it is today. Part idea exchange, part feedback portal, part discussion forum; I’d call that a recipe for meaningful collaboration, and I can’t wait to see what we’re talking about this time next year.
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