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Filene: The Blog

What is the Filene Incubator? (And What is Innovation, Really?)

What is the Filene Incubator? (And What is Innovation, Really?)

I recently returned from what I am calling “The Great Minnesota Road Trip.”  We packed the kids in the car and spent seven days putting on tons of miles and intent on seeing the craziest things Minnesota has to offer. 

What does this have to do with innovation? I'll tell you...

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One Step in Winning the War for Talent: Help Create a World Where Little Girls Want to Become Women

One Step in Winning the War for Talent: Help Create a World Where Little Girls Want to Become Women

My daughter MacKenzie will be seven in October. As our only child, each year has brought unexpected challenges and pleasant surprises. In her sixth year, she’s asked tough questions and started to really demonstrate the person she’s becoming. 

Several times in the last few months she’s told me something that nearly stopped my heart. She’s said, “Mommy, I don’t want to be a girl.” 

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What the he** is a colloquium?! (And other questions you may be afraid to ask)

What the he** is a colloquium?! (And other questions you may be afraid to ask)

I’m a geek. I admit it! Terms like endogenous variable, econometric model, and even colloquium (or its even-more-difficult-to-spell plural cousin, colloquia) get me excited.

I won’t waste your time explaining the ins and outs of variables and models because that’s what Fileners and our research fellows get paid to think about. But the term colloquium has relevance for credit unions like yours. So, if you’ll indulge this research geek, I’d like to explain what the heck a colloquium is and why you should care.

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Where Do Great Ideas Come From?

Where Do Great Ideas Come From?

Ever had a great idea pop into your head seemingly out of nowhere? If so, you know it’s difficult to pin down what exactly sparks a novel idea. Here at Filene, we’ve had the pleasure of building a competency of innovation with credit union leaders for over a decade that puts people at the center of innovation, ensures problems are well defined, nurtures innovative problem solving and ultimately drives iterative prototyping and tangible, life changing solutions.

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Oh the Places We’ll Go…Together

Oh the Places We’ll Go…Together

As a credit union advocate, you know just how important it is that credit unions win the war for talent. Developing, growing and nurturing future leaders within our industry is imperative to our long-term success. That is just as true at Filene as it is at natural person credit unions. In that light, I’m excited to share with you that as of July 10, we have a new leader of The Cooperative Trust, Lauren Culp.

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A Cure for Headaches

A Cure for Headaches

These are times of rapid change in our industry, and Filene developed its Center for Organizational Entrepreneurship specifically to help credit unions navigate this era of disruption. Last week I was fortunate to attend the Center's research colloquium held at Harvard.

I wasn’t counting, but during the first hour alone I heard the word “disruption” more times than I have toes. I began to wonder if we were casually overusing the term? But no, disruption is real. Disruption is now. And we have something to help with your headaches over it.

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If Only I Had Known…A Tale of Debt Dragons and the Heroes that Beat it

If Only I Had Known…A Tale of Debt Dragons and the Heroes that Beat it

A day spent observing seniors in a high school test-run, the Debt Dragon tool helps better understand what their student debt totals would be based on their choices in schools, lifestyles and scholarships was eye-opening. Realizing now what I didn't know then was a bit frustrating, but seeing how Debt Dragon could help countless others in my shoes a few years earlier makes me proud of the credit unions that are innovativing with this tool.

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Is the Next Game Changer Stuck in Your Head?

Is the Next Game Changer Stuck in Your Head?

It’s a cliché and overused buzzword – game changer – but to be fair, it accurately describes what I’m talking about here.

Merriam-Webster defines ‘game changer’ as “a newly introduced element or factor that changes an existing situation or activity in a significant way.” It's exciting to think about what will be the start of the next big change. It's probably already in your head right now.  

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The Accidental Credit Union Member

The Accidental Credit Union Member

I made $5.00 an hour when I was 9. Every Friday afternoon my mom would take me in to work with her to clean my uncle’s office building. After our strenuous workday, my mom and I would head over to the bank right down the road. It took a couple years of maturing and a few jobs later before I even noticed that the bank I went to wasn’t actually called a bank but rather a credit union.

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Why Not to Apply to Filene i3

Why Not to Apply to Filene i3

Why wouldn’t you want to apply to be around a bunch of energized, amazing professionals that are working toward something greater than oneself? Well, there might be a few reasons. It's going to be uncomfortable. You'll have to do things you're not ready to do. It's a lot of work. You'll gain weight...

But I think you'll find what's in the intersection of what's unexpected and what you're passionate about is all the more reason you'll need to say yes to Filene i3.       

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