Can the holidays really be here already? The weather in Boston makes it feel more like October but the onslaught of ads telling me I need to indulge in electronics and cranberry sauce and that Black Friday is the most important day of the weekend are much clearer signals than the thermometer. Before everyone breaks to carve their turkeys and put pies in the oven, I wanted to take a moment to say thanks on behalf of everyone at PerkStreet.
It can seem trite — even phony — when a company says this, because the underlying message can really be “Thanks for making us profits.” We are thankful that you are our customers, but more importantly we are thankful for the relationship we share with you. It’s our reminder that banking can be better — that even in this era of greed and let-down, financial companies can succeed by putting the interests of their customers first and truly serving them well.
Thanks for Being our Partners
Looking back over the years, to the founding of PerkStreet, I can tell you that getting a new financial institution off the ground is no easy task. Doing it differently than the rest is even harder. Through it all, you’ve shared your thoughts and feedback. You’ve forgiven the occasional misstep. You’ve been patient when things have taken longer than we’ve projected. (Yes, I’m talking about the mobile apps, and trust me when I say nothing pains us more than to have a delay on these, but I am happy that you’re willing to give us a tolerable, reasonable level of grief about it.) You’ve been great and our team is thankful to have you by our sides; we are poised to continue building on this base of innovation and we know you will help us turn great ideas into grand realities as our journey together continues. Together, we will make banking great again in America.
Thanks for Being a Community of Support
We had bold ambitions for community when we were starting out. While we are an online-only institution, we knew that the evolution of social media was creating new channels and levels of connection that weren’t being capitalized on by other financial institutions. We thought Facebook, Twitter and the blog were a special place to build bonds with our customers and for them to interact, not another channel for us to push our corporate message and product. You’ve exceeded our expectations for what an online community can be. You answer each other’s questions and address concerns. You share content and ideas for living a better financial life. (Find me another financial institution that has customers write entire blog posts!) You are willing to share your experiences with your friends and total strangers. I’m frequently asked how we did it and I can only reply, “We didn’t do it, they did it.” Thanks for building something so special and supportive. Thanks for playing such a massive role in creating a better financial future for so many.
Thanks for Being Different, for Being Responsible
You’ve probably noticed, but you live life a little differently. You use a debit card to stay in control of your finances and you’ve been willing to switch checking accounts because the rewards for being responsible are meaningful for you. That means you’ve stood up to the marketing machine of the credit industry telling you that you should buy everything you want, not just what you need, and encouraging you to push off the responsibility of paying until it’s too late. Those are seductive ideas backed by powerful organizations and billions of dollars. But you’ve said NO. You said, “I’m not going to live like that.” Speaking at the graduation of one of our friend Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace Universities last week, I was like a proud parent putting our customers on display. You are beacon of hope for those working their way out of debt or just cleaning up their financial lives. You are a role model for generations behind you, because you’re proving that your money can work for you rather than you being enslaved to debt.
Whether they bank with us our not, we are thankful for the growing movement of Americans committed to living and spending responsibly. We believe this is the greatest country in the world, full of smart people who are already working to build a better financial future for themselves and each other. I know I speak for everyone at PerkStreet when I say, when we look at our customer base, we see leaders — people who are proving that they don’t need to buy everything to have everything. You are being smart with your money. You are thinking about your future. And, by being responsible, you are creating a better future for all of us.
Thanks for letting us be a part of it. We are so proud of you.