The Daily Dividend FMS Blog
The Daily Dividend

News, notes and insights from around the industry

APRIL 21, 2017
Friday Hot Links
By Mark Loehrke, Editor, Financial Managers Society

Believe it or not, there’s more to read up on this weekend than yet another think piece on airline customer service.

It’s not unusual to hear a banker complaining about a vendor robbing his or her institution blind, but this recent story on Internal Auditor drives that idea a little bit closer to home, while offering yet another timely reminder on the all-around importance of cybersecurity.   

Thinking Small
Toni Lapp of BankNews shares a couple of good examples of community institutions that are capitalizing on the small-business “buy local” trend to win over customers (special shout-out here to FMS member Sue Reid, an SVP at featured Bangor Savings Bank).    

All Aboard
How many customers is your institution alienating or even driving away because of a complicated, disorganized or just overly fussy onboarding process?  Mary Ellen Georgas-Tellefsen of Capital Performance Group has some ideas for making that process less painful, and thus keeping your profits higher and your customers happier. Take that, airlines! (sorry)
APRIL 20, 2017
The Road to Vegas, Part V: Let's See a Show
By Hilary Collins, Assistant, Publications and Research, Financial Managers Society

Are you coming to the FMS Forum in June? If so, your days will be filled with plenty of education and networking, but when it comes to your evenings, it probably goes without saying that Las Vegas has you covered. Here are just a handful of the exciting things going on in the desert in late June:

Veteran illusionist David Copperfield makes stuff levitate and disappear at the MGM Grand June 23-27. 

Comedian-ventriloquist Jeff Dunham and his puppet crew pull some strings at Caesar’s Palace on June 23.

The Backstreet Boys are back (alright) at Planet Hollywood on June 23, while Queen and Adam Lambert will be rocking T-Mobile Arena on June 24. Break out the ten-gallon hat for Reba, Brooks and Dunn at Caesar’s Palace on June 24, or catch the throwback sibling act of Donny and Marie Osmond at the Flamingo on June 23, 24 and 27.

Cirque du Soleil is all over the Strip, including Mystère at the Treasure Island, while the cobalt percussionists of Blue Man Group keep the party going at Luxor.

So register for the Forum today to secure your spot for the best industry education all day and the best of Vegas all night long!

Catch up with the rest of the Road to Vegas series: Part I // Part II // Part III // Part IV
APRIL 19, 2017
The Stresses of Retirement
By Mark Loehrke, Editor, Financial Managers Society

While some CEOs seem all too ready for retirement, others are determined to stick around until they’re carried out of the place. 

The real problem, however, tends to be those leaders that fall somewhere in the murky middle, holding their cards close to the vest and leaving their institutions in the dark about their plans for eventually vacating that top post. Because there’s much more at stake in this decision than post-retirement tee times and nap schedules (for the CEO, not his or her staff – one hopes), writes Deedee Myers for CUInsight

It’s not so much, she says, that every organization needs to know the exact exit date for its CEO, but rather that simply having a general idea of the leadership timeline can help an institution plan for this eventuality and thus enjoy a smoother and more measured succession process. At the very least, she notes, organizations should take the time and effort to prepare a plan for when the day comes by proactively addressing issues such as:

Building a team of stakeholders that will help navigate the institution through the CEO transition
Developing internal candidates as potential successors 
Establishing a process for replacing key executive team members who may also depart
By considering these issues well before the CEO decides to actually hang it up, organizations can help ensure that that retirement cake isn’t, in fact, a bitter pill to swallow.

APRIL 18, 2017
By Hilary Collins, Assistant, Publications and Research, Financial Managers Society

With winter in the rearview mirror the migratory bird population may be headed back north, but those looking for informative and engaging financial education should be headed south, as FMS presents a three-pronged program in Atlanta this May. 

Things kick off on May 9 and 10, with The ALM/IRR Process from Three Perspectives, featuring Deb Donaldson, president and CEO of Alpha-Numeric Consulting, LLC. Deb’s comprehensive presentation will provide a great overview of the best practices in ALM/IRR modeling, as well as the top ten modeling mistakes and how to avoid them, characteristics of effective ALCO reporting, stress testing tips and much more.

Also on May 9 and 10, longtime FMS presenter Mike Umscheid of ARCSys will cover a topic that’s starting to find its way onto everyone’s agenda in Everything You Need To Know About CECL, featuring a step-by-step look at all of the preparations and regulatory challenges your institution needs to be aware of in order to be ready for this major standard change.

Finally, on May 11 and 12, Mark Haberland and Joseph Kinnerson of Darling Consulting Group will lead the two-day program Develop a Strategically Focused ALCO, with a focus on risk management and earnings enhancement.

All three of these terrific programs will take place at the gorgeous Grand Hyatt, where an affordable group rate is available for all FMS attendees. You can also save $200 by registering for both the ALM and ALCO programs. 

See you in Hotlanta!

APRIL 17, 2017
Bigger Isn't Always Better
By Hilary Collins, Assistant, Publications and Research, Financial Managers Society

Smaller banks are outperforming larger banks, according to some analysis from Matthew Klein over at the Financial Times. So where exactly is David getting the better of Goliath?

Better net interest margins (almost double)
A better  track record of having avoided losses during the recession
Lower charge-offs
Less debt

Klein hypothesizes that these strengths might be partially due to the ability of smaller institutions to better specialize and find their niche. Even the biggest banks can’t beat the power of truly knowing your unique position in the industry.
APRIL 13, 2017
The Road to Vegas, Part IV: Big in Vegas
By Hilary Collins, Assistant, Publications and Research, Financial Managers Society

The FMS Forum is going to be an opportunity to connect with colleagues in the industry and a chance to get insight and wisdom from experts – including the one and only Seth Mattison

Founder and chief movement officer at FutureSight Labs, Seth is an authority on workforce trends and intergenerational dynamics. He helps leading brands and organizations adapt quickly and proactively to changes in the marketplace, harness the power of their top talent and establish an ongoing system to nurture the best ideas.

Seth’s work at FutureSight is all about using personal experience and cutting-edge research to bring new viewpoints and answers to key strategic issues that challenge today’s leaders. His knowledge can help guide organizations through the brand new problems that confront us every day – and come out even better on the other side.

Seth will kick things off speak on Monday, June 26, with his opening general session “Relationship Revolution: Evaluate Your Value to Address the Needs of your Customers Today and Tomorrow.” Register today to join us in Vegas for Seth’s insights and much, much more! (Only two more days to get the early bird discount!)

Catch up with the rest of the Road to Vegas series: Part I // Part II // Part III

APRIL 12, 2017
Persevering Through Crisis
By Mark Loehrke, Editor, Financial Managers Society

The old saw about corporate crises coming down to a matter of “when, not if” is oft repeated, but how many institutions can honestly say they’ve taken the time to really think through and put together a plan for dealing with the ramifications of a significant hit to their reputation or bottom line? 

Particularly in this age of ever-expanding cyber threats, the next corporate crisis could be just around the virtual corner, which is why having a crisis management plan is more than just a Boy Scout kind of exercise in feel-good paper-shuffling – it may, in fact, be the key to an institution’s very survival. And, according to this recent well thought-out piece from author Mike Jacka, internal audit can and should play a key role in putting that plan together.       
The first step is assembling a cross-functional crisis management team, comprising communications/public relations staffers, legal and compliance personnel, a few C-suite representatives and someone from internal audit – not for the purposes of direct decision-making, but rather to ensure the team is addressing the appropriate issues. This team will be responsible for developing the organization’s crisis structure, including:

Crisis identification 

Crisis plan

Communication protocols

Validation and updates


Jacka notes that while internal audit expertise can be particularly helpful in the identification of potential crises – by providing insights from prior audits and work completed in enterprise risk assessments – and the validation of the ongoing plan, IA’s overarching role as observer throughout preparations is crucial.

After all, the only thing worse than a corporate crisis is not being prepared when (not if) one hits.


Mark Loehrke
Editor and Director, Publications and Research

Danielle Holland

Autumn Wolfer
Director, Membership and Marketing

Hilary Collins
Assistant, Publications and Research