Biz: How do you facilitate a growth mindset within Volt’s team to design and implement new initiatives?
J.P.: Collectively, we always have to be considering diversity in streams of revenue. Through COVID and the pandemic, we saw a lot of businesses develop new and interesting ways to make money. Look at different industries and see how they’re innovating. More experience-driven economy industries are now beginning to thrive again. What can we learn from their success? By looking at industries that are out-of-the-box and successful, drawing inspiration from innovation totally unrelated to financial services, that helps us stand out from our competitors.
Biz: One new initiative at Volt is a fully functional, student-led branch you’ll be opening in Hillcrest High School next year. How does growing Volt’s footprint in this way help the bottom line?
J.P.: At Hillcrest, we’ll obviously be gaining new members with the students and staff served at the branch. We’re excited about workforce development, but also financial literacy. We’ll be working with teachers to develop curriculum that encourages budgeting and personal finance. The branch will be immediately impactful for the students working in the branch and the students who will become members, but it’s a long-term play for Volt. These members will hopefully save more money, make better financial choices, and that helps our community.
Biz: Business is booming in 417-land. What advice would you give to business owners and professionals to grow this year?
J.P.: One thing I love to see is that we compete against a lot of national and global players. One competitive advantage we have in Springfield is that we know our customers and we know our community. We have so much insight about our customers because our customers are our friends, our neighbors. Harness that knowledge at the micro level and translate it into unique products and services that have appeal and solve problems. More strategic, more specific, that’s the way forward, and that’s what Springfield has to offer. The world is starting to notice.