Welcome to The TOP 5 PERCENTER™ Blog

Dive in for concise, powerful insights on elevating community banking. Discover strategies and success stories for superior performance, from boosting financial margins to cultivating a dynamic culture. These posts literally contain the secrets of the TOP 5 PERCENTERS™. Sign up to the newsletter so that you don’t miss a single post.

High Performance Accountability Secret [VIDEO]

I just did a seminar today where I asked people, "What's your biggest challenge?" Accountability always seems to be number one whenever that question is asked. No matter the bank—it seems to be universal. Video: High-Performance Accountability Secret There is one key concept often missed regardless of what level you're at on that continuum of accountability. Maybe you're just introducing it. Or...

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How Most Banks Get Team Selling All Wrong [VIDEO]

There was a day, back when I started as a commercial and agricultural lender, that we did everything. We did the channel checks, we did the credit analyst work, we did the business development, and we did the account management. We did it all, and we collected the loans. Those days are over, and now we live in a world of specialization because, let's be frank, there are only a small handful of...

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Merry Christmas [VIDEO]

Merry Christmas to you, your team, and your family.  At a time like this, we should stop and reflect on what this holiday is all about.   It's all about family, and we know it—because having the love and the ability to impact other people in the world and the ones that we brought into the world is a wonderful thing.  But listen: Our family extends beyond the family that we've given birth to and...

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An Important Skill You Must Develop to Be a Great Leader [VIDEO]

Does your executive team know how to stand in the heat of difficult conversations? Video:An Important Skill You Must Develop to Be a Great Leader It's easy to be nice to each other.  I grew up in the Midwest, and my mama taught me to be a nice girl. That was one of the things that was held very dear in my heart, and it was one of the things that I valued.  As I became an executive, I realized I...

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Take Your Team from Meaning Well to Meaningful [VIDEO]

Everybody means well, but do your team members really know how they tie to profit on a daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly basis? Well, you may think they do, but the business research would cause you to pause.  When they asked 6,000 employees if they performed in the top 10%, the answer, 90% of the time, was “yes.” Hmm. Something must be off here.   The problem is that people think that their...

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Conventional Wisdom Is Killing Your Bank’s Future Potential [VIDEO]

Isn't it fascinating how for years and years and years, people would fight wars by standing in line with red coats on, in formation, shooting guns, while the other side would come at them when they had guns standing in line, running with swords, thinking that they could win. That same thing is happening in banking today.    The old thinking that we don't question.  The thinking about how we get...

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A State of Gratitude [VIDEO]

This Thanksgiving, I give thanks for you. And I hope that you're in a state of gratitude.   Gratitude is the filter with which we take in life. At every moment in time, things could be a whole lot worse. And that's what gratitude is–seeing the good things.  I constantly remind my team about when I was growing up milking cows, going to the barn in the morning when it was 20 degrees below zero...

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Are You Properly Utilizing Your Team’s Skills? [VIDEO]

I'm always astonished how difficult we make the Chief Lending Officer’s job.  Video: Are You Properly Utilizing Your Team's Skills?: A Chief Lending Officer Case Study We tell essentially this wonderful human being, who is probably good at credit, “hey, you're in charge of finding your team members”, “you're in charge of making sure you’re onboarding them and making them strong”, “you're in...

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Keeping Your Top 100 in Your Back Pocket [VIDEO]

During challenging times, the one thing you can count on is that desperate competitors and fly-by-night organizations are going to come in and try to take away your best customers.     Let's face it, your top 100 customers, for any bank under $2-billion asset size, account for anywhere between 50 to 140% of your profits. And you also can't be matching the rate. At the time of the inquiry,...

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How to Manage for Profit in Challenging Times [VIDEO]

Challenging times require great transparency of information going to the executive team and also going to the board.   For instance, if I'm a bank CEO, I want to know if the account managers who are assigned to my current top 100 and top 1000 customers are in contact with each one of them, or if they've just left a voicemail, or if they've actually had communication. I want to know if anybody's...

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What You Should Be Communicating to Customers Right Now [VIDEO]

It's never been more important to make sure that you're talking to your customers in ways that matter. I bring this up because I just got done doing a live recording with some of the smartest marketers in banking across the United States, and I saw some tragic errors on their websites and some tragic errors in their press releases.   I see things like great big notices saying the branches are...

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Your Team-Selling Checklist [VIDEO]

Team selling is the new “it.” But most banks get it all wrong, sadly. They think team selling is “I send Joe out with Susie, and Pat goes out with Jane … and everything is good.” That is not team selling. Harvard Business Review had an instructive research-based article making the case that team selling is clobbering the traditional Maverick model. But, hey, to get better results, you’ve got to...

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