Missouri Credit Union Association

Participants Cited Teamwork and Experiential Learning as Benefits

The Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA) provides a number of services to its member credit unions that serve more than a million people statewide. One of its initiatives is to provide education and training to member credit unions’ staff and volunteers. Liz Adams, vice president for education and training for MCUA, decided to bring Attainium’s Disaster Experience to the organization’s Executive Summit to reinforce members’ awareness of the need to be prepared in the event of a business disruption.

“Hurricane Katrina did affect credit unions in a large area, really made it clear that we can’t afford to think it’ll never happen to us,” Adams said. “From my perspective, I really wanted to get everyone thinking about the fact that a disaster can happen at any time and preparation is the key to surviving a disruption.

“Attainium’s exercise was awesome… phenomenal. It is an interactive tabletop exercise that really opens your eyes and offers a great opportunity for experiential learning,” Adams said. “We had an excellent response to the program.”

“I didn’t know what to expect of the program, but it was dynamic, fun and fast-paced,” said Patrick Voss, vice president of operations for the Alliance Credit Union. “It brought to light the reality of Murphy’s Law: one disaster easily can steamroll into another. One of the most important things I took away from the session was the reminder that sometimes what is perception is not reality; you need to get as much information as possible before acting.

“Another takeaway was the fact that you can’t afford to get complacent; a disruption or even a significant event can occur at any time,” Voss said. “I really liked the teamwork and the dynamics of the brainstorming to find solutions to the problems that arose. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It kept everyone’s attention, and it flowed well. It wasn’t just talking heads.”

Brian Eyestone, president of the Southpointe Credit Union, said that the session “gave me what I was hoping for. I attended because I am always looking for information that will enable us to stay as current as possible with our business continuity planning. I particularly enjoyed the rapid response aspect of the exercise. There was a lot covered, and it was educational to see how various people responded to the chaos of the situation. I highly recommend this session to anyone interested in business continuity.”

“Our participants were mostly presidents and vice presidents of credit unions, and they loved the exercises. The program was very worthwhile and succeeded in what I wanted from it,” Adams said. “We’re bringing Attainium back to do another Disaster Experience exercise at our Midwest Management Issues Conference.”

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