Letters From Leton: The Darkest Hour

My dad fought in World War II. Some of you had parents, grandparents, or other relatives who did as well.

Later in life, Dad would finally talk some about the War. During one session on his front porch, he talked about how fearful the US Soldiers were that they were going to lose the War… How superior German equipment, especially Tanks, was to American Tanks and equipment… That if the Germans had had a few more men with a little more equipment and resources, they could have won the war!

The thought of the Germans winning WWII goes against my mindset – but here was a man, who was as straight a shooter as you would ever meet, telling me what he believed. A cold chill went up my spine.

In today’s banking world, some bankers don’t think they need to change, learn, or adapt to a new financial world. Some believe that in a world of “unlimited service” it’s okay to provide poor service.

The thought that a local bank can survive anything, including poor service… that thought gives me a cold chill as well.

Looking to the past and understanding it is important, but adapting to the future is vital to the success of any business, including banks. To not adapt is to commit to failure. One clear line of adaptation for businesses is the concept that superior service (think Chick-fil-A) wins out over poor service!

If you are interested and have time, take a look at a World War II documentary. Instead of assuming the outcome (which you already know) pay attention to the faces of the men. You will see fear and concern, but you will also see commitment to succeed.

– 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.