Core values serve as guiding principles that shape a bank's culture and behavior. Values provide a framework for decision-making and can help our banking teams understand what is expected of them in various situations. Banking is built on trust and having well-defined core values can build this trust with clients. When a bank consistently demonstrates its commitment to their core values, they're showing the community their authenticity and providing a well-rounded moral and operational compass.
At Bank of Central Florida, our values consist of being client-focused, entrepreneurial-minded, managing peer-to-peer relations, being self-managed, and that we care. We work to uphold our core values every day, implementing strategies and goals for each team member to work towards. One of those strategies is our Propelling Forward Together, P.F.T., group meetings that our entire staff are a part of every two months. Each meeting focuses on a core value and topics that will help us advance in our professional growth and unity across the bank. Each team consists of cross-departmental peers and different levels of management, led by a member of our ambassador team.
At Bank of Central Florida, our focus is on what we can do to make our client experience as smooth, efficient, and transparent as possible. In our P.F.T. groups we focus on listening to one another and learning how to shape our communication with care. Be it working with clients or our teams, we strive for professionalism and forging a relationship that shows that we care. Some challenge questions we ask to get a team discussion going include:
- Give some examples of how you or one of your peers have gone above and beyond for a client or peer, how did you or they achieve that?
- Why is it so important to be client-focused?
- What do you think about being genuine or authentic? How do we show our authenticity to our clients?
- How does serving others make one a better leader?
Between our different teams, our ambassadors have stated that it's encouraging to see the different responses to our scenarios. Having our employees walk away from these meetings with new perspectives on how they can better serve our clients, no matter what their position within the bank, is a step forward towards seeking forward motion.
Being entrepreneurial at our bank is at the heart of everything we do. We have a commitment to being solution-oriented, always striving to find the best ways to accommodate our clients' needs. The spirit of innovation and creative alternatives sets us apart, and drive us to think outside of the box to bring our clients a solution to their financial needs. In our P.F.T. groups we focus on our personal and professional growth. How we can be realistic with our time. Some of the challenge questions we propose in this meeting are:
- Why is your role needed at the bank?
- What experiences have you had that made you feel like your role is valuable?
These questions brought a lot of self-reflection to our groups, as well as discussions on how our different departments interact with one another, even without realizing it. As a bank, while some departments may seem far apart, we all work alongside to propel forward together.
The value of peer-to-peer team relations is ingrained in our approach to serving clients. We wholeheartedly believe in the power of collaboration and teamwork. By prioritizing peer-level conflict resolution and problem-solving, we not only strengthen the bonds within our team but also ensure that we deliver more efficient and seamless service to our clients. This approach promotes open communication, trust, and a shared commitment to excellence. When we resolve issues internally among peers, we create a harmonious working environment that directly translates into a better experience for both our clients and team, ultimately reinforcing our dedication to providing top-notch service and support.
Within our P.F.T. groups we split up into pairs and engaged in a riddle scavenger hunt, the goal was to get pairs who don't normally interact in their day-to-day tasks to work together towards a common goal. After the event, we discussed as a group questions such as:
- What have you learned about your peers through this experience?
- What stood out to you about working together?
- How could this relate to peer-to-peer solutions during our everyday hustle?
The overarching message is about unity throughout the bank, and even if we don't cross paths often, our work towards our clients and community overlaps as each department is a blade on our propeller, and each blade is needed to propel forward together.
The value of being self-managed is embracing accountability and recognizing that our individual efforts and productivity collectively contribute to our bank's success. Our view is that the bank should set a clear vision, and it is our responsibility, as employees, to find innovative and effective ways to bring that vision to life. By being self-managed, we empower ourselves to take ownership of our roles and responsibilities, fostering a culture of proactive problem-solving and continuous improvement. This approach not only enhances our professional growth, but also ensures that we are aligned with our bank's goals, driving us to achieve excellence in everything we do.
In our P.F.T. groups we focused on learning more about our peers, asking each member to send in a fun fact about themselves, where we then had to guess what fun fact belonged to whom. In our discussions we asked questions such as:
- How being self-managed can relate to empowerment?
- How do you view being self-managed in our work culture?
The accountability and trust we have in being self-managed has allowed us to make decisions and choices that will help our client, allowing us to be creative in our approach to our relationships, allowing for fast responses and decision making, allowing our clients to move forward with their day and plans.
Caring is a fundamental core value, as we prioritize our relationship with our clients in all aspects of our work. We care about our community, fostering a supportive and collaborative environment that encourages growth. Our clients are not just transactions but individuals we care about, working tirelessly to meet their financial needs and aspirations. Beyond our walls, we extend our care to the communities we serve, aiming to be responsible corporate citizens, actively involved in making a positive impact. Trust is the cornerstone of our relationships, and we approach each day with a positive attitude, creating an atmosphere of optimism and resilience that reflects our commitment to caring.
Within our P.F.T. groups we tend to bring our meeting on caring closer to the holidays at the end of the year, focusing on the friendships and client relationships around us. This meeting is more relaxed, and revolves around the question of caring:
- What experiences do you have that show an act of caring?
- How have you been cared for in the past?
- What can we do to show our clients how we care?
The act of caring can be tough to put in words, as our actions truly show our care. This can range from how we are quick at respond to calls to how we are ready for every client who walks through our doors. Being a community bank, our value of We Care ties directly to our community, relationships, and the effort we make towards it to propel forward together.
Who We Are
One of our ambassadors, Slyvella Davis - Vice President and Deposit Operations Manager, has said it best:
"I am inspired by leading a P.F.T. Group because I feel I can make a difference and am grateful for the opportunity to do so. P.F.T. Groups give us all the opportunity to glean from one another and our experiences! For our brand, I couldn't think of a better logo than our propeller, how befitting! Each propeller must function to keep Bank of Central Florida afloat. Each blade plays a critical part in our origination's success. If all blades are not fully functioning, it could be harmful; whether reputational, financial or physical. I am proud to say I work for an organization where all blades are fully functioning, thriving and propelling us forward."
Our core values serve as our guiding principles, propelling us forward together towards a brighter and more prosperous future.