Letters From Leton: Looking For A Good Sofa?

When Tammie and I lived in Richmond, many folks recommend that we travel to Green Front Furniture in Farmville (90 minutes away) to buy furniture. We were looking for a bed for our daughter (transitioning from the baby bed to the little girl bed). We went, we found a good deal, and we spent money 65 miles from home.

It is interesting that when we are looking for good quality at a good price we will travel, often much further than we do in our daily lives.

At a Virginia Bankers meeting last week, we had a number of great speakers, including Dave Martin. Dave, originally from Louisiana and now in Houston, has been a regular guest columnist for the American Banker for nearly 20 years. He was also a banker in one of the early bank offices in a supermarket (Winn-Dixie). I often read his articles.

He is on top of where the “Bank Office” is going. No, not going away… just changing in how we interact and do banking business.

Dave makes the argument that Bank Offices have moved from the category of gas stations or grocery stores – places you go at least weekly – to a category more like furniture stores – places you go occasionally when you need something important to add to your life. A thought we share and have for a while now.

His main point is that people will flock to quality service and ….. drumroll…. that we as bankers have to make the most of every bank visit by our customers and establish our (the Banker’s) value to the customer over our competition.

As Dave was sharing, I thought back to a recap of a teller huddle at our Pennington Gap Office a couple of weeks back.

The recap shared the story of one of our customers who moved to Georgia years ago but kept his bank accounts with us

With direct deposit, online banking, debit cards and wonderful, helpful people he knows and likes – why move his account? The customer did joke that living in Georgia didn’t allow him to drop by the office as much as he wanted to.

Is our Bank the “Green Fronts” of Banking? Will customers drive further to get to our bank, passing others, due to our ability to serve and care for them?

I believe they will. 

Stay safe and get vaccinated.

– Leton

“Letters From Leton” is a blog series comprised of the weekly updates that Leton Harding – President, Chairman, and CEO of Powell Valley National Bank, shares with the Bank’s team members. These newsletters are full of uplifting anecdotes and intriguing insights that are applicable beyond the Bank, so we want to share them with you.