Current News

BBW shows support for community banking through participation in industry conventions  April 2014

With a service area stretching from the country’s Great Plains to the western states, Bankers’ Bank of the West will demonstrate support for community banking at numerous banking conventions in the coming months. Those events include:

Nebraska Bankers Association Convention
La Vista, Nebraska — May 7-9

Colorado Bankers Association Summit
Denver, Colorado — May 21-22

New Mexico Bankers Association Convention
Santa Fe, New Mexico — June 5-6

North Dakota and South Dakota Bankers Associations’ Convention
Fargo, North Dakota — June 8-10

Arizona Bankers Association Convention
Sedona, Arizona — June 8-10

Wyoming Bankers Association Convention
Sheridan, Wyoming — June 16-17

Idaho, Oregon and Nevada Bankers Associations’ Convention
Sun Valley, Idaho — June 18-20

Utah and Montana Bankers Associations’ Convention
Sun Valley, Idaho — June 29-July 2

ICBA-New Mexico Annual Meeting
Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico — Jul 24-26

Montana Independent Bankers Convention
Whitefish, Montana — July 31-August 2

Independent Bankers of Colorado Convention
Vail, Colorado — September 18-20


Topics selected for 2014 online training seriesMarch 24, 2014

WesPay and Bankers’ Bank of the West have chosen web-based courses to be scheduled exclusively for BBW’s customer banks starting in April.

The joint effort between BBW and WesPay, which acquired the ACH Regional Division of the Viewpointe® payments association early this year, is aimed at making effective job-specific training readily available to community banks. Many banks enjoy the convenience of training numerous employees at once—a solution that’s economical as well given that pricing for the webinars is based on the number of phone/Internet connections needed.

The 2014 webinars will be led by expert WesPay trainers; registrations and logistic preparations will be handled by BBW. The mix of courses to be offered in 2014 will give participants exposure to the payments system as a whole.

Course topics will be:

  • Payments Fraud
  • FFIEC and Corporate Takeover
  • 2014 New Rules Update
  • Essentials of Cards
  • ACH Policies and Procedures, Part 1
  • ACH Policies and Procedures, Part 2
  • Check Rules and Regulations
  • Check Returns and Adjustments

Complete information on these WesPay sessions—including course descriptions, session times, pricing and registration form —will soon be available to BBW customers. To learn more about the webinar training in the meantime, contact your cash management officer or email ops@bbwest.com.


Limiting exposure of the community bank directorate March 2014
Debbie L. Meyers, Senior Consultant
Bank Strategies LLC

The community bank director takes on significant responsibilities upon election to the community bank board. Given those responsibilities, the director would be exposed to various legal and personal liability should the director not fulfill these responsibilities with the duty and care expected of the position. In carrying out the significant responsibilities expected of the position, the directorate of a community bank must exercise sound and objective judgment and follow good governance practices given the special protection accorded the industry in the form of government insurance for bank deposits. Directors must be especially diligent to ensure they thoroughly review materials, request explanations to understand transactions for which they are unfamiliar or unclear, seek expertise or guidance as necessary for unusual transactions, and exercise their independent judgment. It is important that community banks orient new board members regarding the scope of their responsibilities and the extent of liability associated with their position by providing training. The community bank should also provide ongoing and periodic training for all directors to remind them of their responsibilities as well as keep them abreast of regulatory and industry changes. All regulatory agencies provide comprehensive director training programs, many of them online, which can be utilized for this purpose.

To evidence that actions and decisions of the board are considered with the duty and care of the position, a best practice is to prepare adequate documentation of the discussions and decisions of the directorate, both at the board level and in committee minutes, on all key matters facing the directorate. While the organization does not need to overly document all decisions, additional care should be taken to document any discussions regarding issues critical to bank operations and strategy. Those decisions and discussions warranting additional documentation should include, but not be limited to, those transactions associated with affiliates or insiders, actions which could raise potential questions regarding conflicts of interest, or those which could raise future concerns regarding if the transaction is in the best interest of the bank. Although directors and officers liability insurance provides protection under many circumstances, the coverage does not extend to acts of dishonesty and those that are criminal, conflicts of interest issues, or transactions that are undertaken for personal gain.

This is part of a series of articles providing suggestions for improving the performance and effectiveness of the directorates of community banks. It was posted by Bankers’ Bank of the West with the author’s permission.

About Bank Strategies LLC

Through a menu of strategic planning, profit improvement, corporate governance and other services, Bank Strategies, LLC has consistently demonstrated the ability to generate superior performance and profitability for its client banks while allowing them to continue to operate in a safe and sound manner. The firm’s professionals are well-known and respected in the community banking sphere of bank attorneys, bank certified public accountants, bank trade association executives, and the press due to their quality of service, expertise and knowledge, and bank reputation. More information about this bank consulting firm is available at www.bankstrategiesllc.com.


How to Lead When Your Employees Don’t Have to Follow
by David M. Dye (posted by Bankers’ Bank of the West with the author’s permission)

How long can you hold your breath?

Better yet, unless it’s dangerous to your health, try it right now: hold your breath as long as you can.

I’ll wait…

How long did you make it? 30 seconds, one minute, maybe two? Before long, you couldn’t help yourself – you just had to breathe.

In fact, I could offer a huge incentive for you to hold your breath, but no matter how much money I offer, at some point you have no choice. Your body will force the issue.

The fundamental leadership truth you cannot ignore

There are only two things in the world that you have to do: breathe and eliminate waste. Every other behavior is a choice.

You choose how you show up to work each day: Will you give it your best or just occupy space and slide by? It’s a choice you make.

The fundamental leadership truth you cannot ignore is that if it’s a choice for you, it’s also a choice for your team. Everyone is a volunteer.

Show me the money?

You cannot force anyone to do anything.

“Wait a minute, David,” you might say, “if they don’t do their job they can be fired.”

You’re right of course, but that doesn’t change anything. They still have a choice about what they do and whether or not to remain on the team. Think about your own situation: to keep your job, there is a minimum effort you have to put in.

Oddly enough, I’ve never coached or worked with a single leader who wanted a team’s minimum effort. Of course not! As a leader you want motivated, committed, engaged teams. In short: teams that choose to give their best.

The path to engaged teams begins when you realize that everyone chooses:

  • If they will be a part of your team.
  • How they will show up.
  • How much effort they will give.
  • How well they will perform their role.

How to lead when they don’t have to follow

This fundamental truth — that everyone is a volunteer — will change your leadership forever. Every person on your team becomes a gift. Every action they take is a freely given gift. Every ounce of energy they expend on a project is a gift.

Your work as a leader shifts from force to invitation, from control to influence, from fear to gratitude. You won’t lead to wring out the worst, but to bring out the best.

Here are a few specific tools you can use to begin:

  • Connect the “what” to the “why.” Work without meaning is a form of punishment suitable to prison camps. Make sure your team knows the purpose behind their tasks, the value in the organization’s work, and how their work makes a difference. If the work has no meaning — eliminate it!
  • Ask “How can I help?” Your team needs support and training that only you can provide. Make sure they have the training, equipment, and political support they need to succeed. Don’t do their work for them, but help them grow and expand their ability to problem solve by asking critical thinking questions.
  • Apologize when you screw up.  Apologizing doesn’t make you weak. It demonstrates courage, builds your credibility, and models taking responsibility when you drop the ball. That’s what you want from your staff, right?
  • Maintain standards and expectations. Volunteers, more than anyone, need to know that their time is valued. When you permit people to underperform without consequence, then you effectively tell everyone who chooses to do their best that they are wasting their time.
  • Say “thank you.” Do you like what your team did? Do they know it? Do you want more of it? Don’t wait to say “thank you.”

Your turn

If you think about your own performance, I’ll bet your best efforts were not the result of money or a fear of being fired.

Leave us a comment and let us know:

  • How have your leaders brought out the best in you?
  • How can you do the same for your team?

Everyone is a volunteer. Lead with gratitude!

David M. Dye, leadership speaker and business consultant, is the author of The Seven Things Your Team Needs to Hear You Say. He will deliver the luncheon keynote talk at the Bank Operations Conference(presented by Bankers’ Bank of the West) to be held in Denver on May 15. To learn more about David, or comment on this article, visit www.trailblazeinc.com.


Consulting firm shares insights on victimization of elders,assessment of compliance risk, and other topicsFebruary 19, 2014

The consulting firm Chartwell Compliance publishes a digital newsletter, Chartwell Compass, which is available on a complimentary basis upon request. The February issue features articles on issues of current interest to bankers. The story about guarding the dignity, safety and finances of the elderly references a publication available through this link on the FDIC website.

To request a complimentary subscription to Chartwell Compass, contact info@chartwellcompliance.com.

Training and education for operational staff remains a priority in 2014February 5, 2014

The importance of managing risk intelligently in the ACH payments environment is clear: Ongoing education of your entire operational team is essential.

As a partner to community banks, Bankers’ Bank of the West is working with WesPay—acquirer of the ACH Regional Association Division of the Viewpointe® payments association—to make web-based training both convenient and affordable to BBW’s customer banks. A roster of select courses will be developed and made available to customer banks during the second quarter. All of the classes will be led by WesPay, a leader in the area of field of electronic payments.

The joint effort between BBW and WesPay reflects a shared interest in extending the benefits of high-quality ACH-related training to front-line employees of community banks. For information on this educational effort, or to learn more about any cash management service Bankers’ Bank of the West provides, contact your cash management officer or email the Operations Department staff at ops@bbwest.com.