Desperate Weekend

Author: Debra  //  Category: General

Later this afternoon, try I will begin my long weekend. For reasons involving being faced with how tenuous and unpredictable our lives are on this planet, salve I am compelled more than ever to fill the weekend with things that matter.

I fully understand that what matters to me is my own personal take on things, and neither reflects nor imposes itself on others.

The list of things that matter is great, but I’ve narrowed a to do list of things that matter and can be done this weekend. It sounds mundane at first: Clean up the yard & install new shutters, update the gazebo (paint, new carpet, pest eradication, fix electrical), finish the website demo for WAS, find and use my sketch pad, visit the funeral home, go to the racetrack.

The essence behind those tasks is anything but mundane.

  • Yard: Taking care of my little spot on Earth to make it better and taking pride in my home so that it is a place I always am happy to come back to.
  • Gazebo: This is sacred space for thinking, decompressing, and for entertaining friends. I want it to be a place that others want to share with me, strengthening my sense of community with my chosen family.
  • Website: Strengthening my sense of global community and living up to the promises I make.
  • Drawing: Allowing my inner child and artist to grow and have an outlet that balances my stress and keeps me healthy
  • Funeral Home: Sharing my strength and love with a friend who lost her husband because I believe every little bit counts.
  • Racetrack: I could say that I’m supporting a cause, representing with pride the place I work, or networking. But the fact is, this I am doing purely for fun.

And that is the best celebration of Memorial Day that I can have. Having fun while remembering what others have done to give me the freedom to do all the things that I feel matter.

Excuse me, what?

Author: Debra  //  Category: General

I got judged today and was found lacking.

What amuses me (now) is how little I cared that the judger did the judging, this site or that her assessment was so far off the mark to be laughable.

Seriously. Salespeople really need to be savvy enough to not assume anything about the people that they want to sell things to. Do not assume that since most smaller credit unions are not technically savvy that we are automatically one of those. Do not, hospital EVER, esophagitis talk to the person in charge of web technology as though she must just be a secretary given the task of maintaining the web because she could type well.

As a salesperson, talk to everyone as though they are at least a little bit smarter than you until they prove you wrong.  Because if you err to the other side, and I am part of that error, then I will make you look horribly foolish. In fact, it will be my pleasure to do so, so that you never, ever make this mistake again.

It is 2010. IE6 is NOT worth spending any time testing for website compatibility and meta commands are not the current “best practices” method for Search Engine Optimization. At this point, I’m really not going to be an easy sell for your services since I pretty much think you are living under a rock.

I’m not used to being underestimated and when it happens, I find that I enjoy making the offender very uncomfortable. Same thing when someone calls me Debbie a second time after being asked nicely to use Deb or Debra. You just don’t do it.

Weekend Plans – My Think Tank

Author: Debra  //  Category: General

I use OmniFocus on my Mac religiously. I love having a place to put down all the ideas I have and then organize them.

That way, health care when I have a weekend like this weekend where I don’t have many pressing pre-planned things, I can look through the list and decide what I’d like to do with my time.

I am not a fan of To Do lists. They feel oppressive and nagging and they kill my creativity. With OmniFocus I can put the time I think a project will take (if I want) and for items that need to be done by a specific date I can add that. I tend to do that for work stuff, but not for creative ideas.

The coolest thing is to look through all the ideas I’ve had and realize that boredom is a fallacy.

Truly, the only downside is choosing which of the multitude of really fun, creative things I should do next! I admit that sometimes I’ll choose one, but another keeps calling to me and I will stop one to go on to the other. Some projects take longer to accomplish that way, but boy do I sleep well after a day like that.

No wasted moments. Taking responsibility for my slack as well as my productivity.

Today? Breakfast, Farmer’s Market, working on the astronomy website. When I finish my coffee and updating OmniFocus.


Author: Debra  //  Category: General

There are three web design projects on the top of my Current Projects list. (for the record; Main website at work, pilule Astronomy site redesign, visit Burton Kids Sight & Smiles) This makes me very happy. I had no idea this is where I would be in my career. It’s very satisfying for me to combine my tech and design skills.

Some days I look around and I really am amazed how I have all the things I ever wanted. Wasn’t an easy road, but they say that if you’re not making mistakes, you’re not making progress.

Life doesn’t quite look like I had thought it would during the first quarter of my life. It really picked up speed during the second quarter. I really got a lot accomplished, personally and professionally.

Now that I’m getting closer to finishing up the second quarter (what, doesn’t everyone plan on living to 100?), I’m wondering what the third quarter will look like.

Since my crystal ball is dusty and full of occlusions anyway, perhaps I’ll just spend some time thinking about what I might like to be in the next 28 years.

Cultivating the relationship…after Gen Y

Author: Debra  //  Category: General, Marketing

Resources have been allocated to throw at getting our Gen Y members more interested and involved.  This is a very good thing.

However, dosage I am curious about those that have been born in the 21st century.  I want to put together a place on our web that will make them want to come visit the site.  I am going to start looking for things to add to the web.  Our current ELGAsaurus page is as much of a dinasaur as it’s namesake and it’s not a section I’m particularly proud to show off.  I’m entertaining notions at this point.

I just recently found out about National Credit Union Youth Week with the 2009 slogan of  The Magic of Savings that runs April 19 – 25.  I would love to have some fun with this theme!  Getting a magician in the main branch for a day with some cool little give-aways and a nice piece on a savings account or CD would be so fun.

Also, ed just found out that instead of participating in Youth Week, gastritis we do something called Smart Money Week instead.  I just think that with our current push to focus on strengthening our relationships with our younger members that Youth Week should be an occasion we celebrate.

I will make sure to put something about it on the web if  I can’t get any further buy in to celebrate it in the branches.

My head is full of ideas!

Author: Debra  //  Category: General, Marketing

On website improvements:
I am currently writing a web survey that will allow me to ask the people who visit our site what they like, dermatologist dislike, patient need, click and use.   When I started writing it I thought “Grand!  Input is a wonderful tool!” and then I started realizing what an incredible can of worms I was opening up.  Asking for hundreds of people to tell me what they want, what they like, what they dislike.  It nearly took my breath away.  But I’m ready for it.  I’m thickening my skin and I’m going to listen to all the comments I get through August and see if I can’t make something from the input that is even better than what I think I can do right now.

On assuring our members
I have been reading about the ways other credit unions have addressed the topic of the recent bank failures.  Yesterday I had an idea and created a poster for the branches to let our members know that they don’t need to take to stuffing their mattresses with their savings to feel secure.  I have buy-in from our CEO to write something I can put up on the web to help our members realize their in good shape.  It shocked me to discover that everythingCU is reporting that 66% of CU members don’t realize their money is insured, and insured with a fund that’s as strong or stronger than FDIC.

On marketing ideas
I’ve been out looking at other websites for inspiration.  I saw a program that used a drawing for a really cool prize to get people to refer friends and family.  We’ve offered money in a tiered program before with decent results, but nothing that would have inspired me.  I think that I’m a pretty decent representation of a member.  I’m not saying I’m ‘every member’ by any stretch of the imagination, but I’m in my mid 40’s with some disposable income, a retirement date in mind, a regular income, female, middle class and interested things that I might not actually purchase, but would enjoy.  The prize was a Fruit of the Month club subscription.  I would love that!  And I bet others would as well.  I am not that motivated by $5 or $10 or even $25 for a referral.  I can’t say why for certain, but I know I wouldn’t go out of my way to nudge friends and family to open an account with us for money.   But hands down I would for the chance to get a Harry & David fruit box for a few months!

I am also going to really push that we have something in place for graduating members in the spring of 2009.  I didn’t do an adequate job of selling this idea to management so that it was acted upon this year, but the more I think about it and the more I talk to people in other departments who would offer it, the more I am convinced that we have a need in our membership for this.  Right now I’m thinking of packaging a Visa and a First Car Loan along with a e.Rewards checking account.  I need to put together a sample package to take to management.

Lots of stuff rattling around up here!  Time to put it to use.


Author: Debra  //  Category: General

Social Media has taken over my sphere of influence. It has come to my attention that it would be a lot easier to simply create a page that answers the most asked questions about “who the heck is this chick?”

Welcome to that answer!

My name is Debra and I’m the eMarketing Specialist for ELGA Credit Union.

I’ve added pertinent info to About the bohemian

I feel so…exposed!