Plansmith Blog

Sue West

Recent Posts

Influential Women in Business 2018

Posted by Sue West on 12/7/18 1:50 PM

Having tried my best to avoid ‘labels’ of all types, I seldom bring attention to achievements that are gender associated. However, the good work of others is something that should always be recognized. Male or female, it is always important to acknowledge role models that inspire.

In recognition of their hard work and dedication, Plansmith would like to congratulate this year’s 2018 Influential Women In Business Honorees, including our client, Jean Theis, EVP and COO of Andigo CU.

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On Thanksgiving...

Posted by Sue West on 11/15/18 9:49 AM

For those of you who are fans of the sitcom Seinfeld, George Costanza would break down this word into its two components: thanks and giving.

How many times in our daily lives do we say “thanks"? A lot! It’s our common, casual, and pretty standard way to end each email, text, and verbal conversation. I’m not saying that it isn’t heartfelt. I’m just saying that this time of year - and this particular holiday - give us a chance to pause and appreciate each other. And, maybe more importantly, pay more attention when someone offers us a thank you.

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Client Success Stories: Those Who Inspire Us

Posted by Sue West on 9/14/18 2:04 PM

Too often when we’re asked why we do what we do, we naturally default to talking about ourselves.

The truth is, it’s the people we work with every day that inspire us to do what we do.

Our clients make their own success. Their ambition, discipline, commitment, and transparency bind every person throughout their organization to a common goal. There are so many of these success stories, we wanted to highlight several noted in recent banking publications.

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Bipartisan Banking: It's About Time

Posted by Sue West on 4/25/18 12:05 PM

I have been in the banking industry since 1979, and on March 22, 2018 I received a copy of something that I never thought I would see that made me say out loud, “It’s about time!”

It was a letter to Members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation. The content of that letter was to express strong support for bill S. 2155, the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act. What surprised me was that it was signed by the presidents and CEOs of 4 financial trade associations, comprised of both banks and credit unions.

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There is No Secret Sauce

Posted by Sue West on 12/27/17 10:32 AM

We all like to start the new year with aspirations to renew, realign, and regain control of our world.

I don’t know about you, but those words just get me pumped.

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The Community Bank Strategic Planning Experiment: Using Your Model To Prepare for Rising Interest Rates

Posted by Sue West on 5/10/17 10:00 AM
Q: What makes an experiment successful?

A: Its failures.

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Learning to Lead: 5 Things a Leader Must Learn

Posted by Sue West on 12/28/16 7:56 AM

From my very first job at 15, I knew I had management potential. I was always able to coordinate a variety of projects at once. I often compare myself to a circus act. You know, the one that keeps the plates spinning on sticks at one time? Now known as "multitasking."

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True or False: Planning is a Verb?

Posted by Sue West on 8/17/16 10:00 AM

True or False

A budget is a once a year process for an institution.

True: A budget is a process typicallydone once a year to establish targets/goals of measure to be used as guidelines throughout the year.

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Communication is Paramount to Achieving Community Bank Objectives

Posted by Sue West on 4/7/14 10:30 AM
Tell me about your business. What is your organization like today? How did it get there? How is it managed? Where do you see it going and how are you planning to get there? What obstacles are in your way? Tell me about your business.

When I ask this of a financial institution, I usually receive balance sheets and risk reports. Most people immediately think ‘numbers’ when you mention planning. I challenge you to think differently, think communication. Tell me about your business.

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