Red Sauce

February 5, 2015

Benefits, Ballots and the Big Bang Theory


Increased efficiency. Lower overhead costs. More lending capacity. 
Ask any financial analyst or CPA about the benefits of merging and you’ll likely hear these phrases and others. 

Yet when credit unions merge, it’s not about efficiency or overhead. 
It’s about members. 

Making it clear how merging benefitted members helped EDTECH Federal Credit Union successfully merge with Horizon Credit Union last December. In fact, nearly 80 percent of the members who cast ballots supported the merger. 

With genuine, transparent leaders at the helm and the limitations of a two-branch credit union clear, leaders worked with JayRay in the earliest stages to craft a compelling case. Member benefits took center stage. And, a short, simple campaign theme tied together online, in person and paid media: Same Service. More Services. 

From visible and respected business leaders to trusted employees and board members, merger materials featured the people and places of Butte. Town Hall meetings offered yet another forum for members to ask questions and get quick answers, while postcards mailed to members’ homes filled in the details.

Election Win Proves The Theory: It's all about members

At the member meeting held to collect final ballots and announce election results, a few members asked pointed questions and expressed doubts about the merger. The credit union’s CEO politely answered questions and tried to allay fears. 

Then a funny thing happened—other members spoke up, ticking off merger benefits with enthusiasm. The night ended on a high note, with staff and members alike sharing a celebratory round of applause. 

And why not?

More services—delivered by the same friendly staff that members knew and trusted—were just a few months away.



“Penny, there’s only one cookie with something in the middle that solves life’s problems, and that’s an Oreo.” Sheldon Lee Cooper, “The Big Bang Theory”

For me, there is no greater joy at the end of a long day than sitting down with an episode of “The Big Bang Theory” and an Oreo dipped in milk. Pure heaven. I’m not sure Oreos solve all life’s problems. They certainly play a big part in my day-to-day existence.

Take my job with JayRay. As advisor and production manager, one side of my job (or cookie) is to guide clients, create marketing and communications plans, and plan events. The other chocolate wafer is dedicated to managing deadlines, setting expectations and organizing information.  

When JayRay lands a big project, I schedule it out with our creative team to meet client expectations. With a keen view and understanding of both sides of the project, I work to find a place to meet in the middle. Ah, the delicious, creamy center!

When managing sizeable projects, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. The trick is to never bite off more than you can chew. 

  • Nibble at your to-do list. Break it down. Tackle one thing at a time. Chew slowly. Small bites go down a lot easier, and are often the most gratifying. 
  • Never eat the whole thing in one bite. Don’t say you can get the entire task done at once if you don’t have the time. Work within a sensible time frame that allows you to approach the job in a way that fits your work style. 
  • Communicate…even crumbs can be significant. Teamwork is the backbone of any organization—and the key to any successful project. Communicate with your team and clients constantly to provide updates and get feedback.  

Moira has extensive experience eating Oreos, and has a particular fondness for the mint-flavored variety. A passionate planner and event marketer, Moira silently (and not-so-silently) judges every event she attends.