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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; 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 people on Planet Earth, usually about 6% of the population, according to emotional intelligence assessments, that are really designed and built for business development.

Video: How Most Banks Get Team Selling All Wrong

So, what good is it to take people who are not good at closing big deals and force them to have an officer call program, where they’re losing the potential prospects that a business development person, who would love to have a hack at those, could do a good job with? Also, there are certain people who are just plain much better at collecting on loans and have the analytical skills and the kind of persuasion to get that done well. Why not put them into their area of expertise?

So, the old days of making sure that everybody had to fit in the same mold and beating them up for not being good at certain parts of their job, even though they were masterful in another part, are over. It’s important to look at the emotional intelligence scores of your team members as you’re choosing which slot to put them in. Why? Because emotional intelligence is the thinking underneath all behaviors. So, if somebody is naturally inclined to think this way, and that is their innate preference, then of course they’re going to be far better at doing something they’re naturally inclined to do.

The better you align your team members to the places where they can win, the better your bank does, because that’ll be a higher return on investment from every one of your salary dollars. So, it’s time to start thinking right now about dividing your team up. Don’t do it as one big sweeping thing; move one person at a time into an area where they can win, give them the education, have them win, and then start moving the next person. Sending out a memo saying “We’re doing a reorg” is a terrible idea. And yet, waiting and not putting a good team system in place is as bad of an idea. So, have some fun putting people into the right slots.

– Roxanne Emmerich

Please watch the video above and share it with your exec team and board.

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