The Wisconsin Bankers Association offers for your use the following consumer education column. Your bank is free to use this as a community column in your local newspaper, a letter to the editor, a press release or in any other way you see fit. The purpose is to give our members an easy-to-use tool for promoting the banking industry to Wisconsin's communities.

How Your Bank Works for Your Community

Across the country, banks play a critical role in growing the economy by lending money to businesses and consumers. But what about in your community? Banks have a direct impact there, too. Here are four ways your local institution is helping your community grow and prosper. 

One: They support the local economy. When you deposit money with your local institution, the bank then uses those deposits to make loans to local businesses and/or your neighbors. Whether it's funding a new or expanding business in your city or helping someone nearby buy a new house or vehicle, you know your money is going right back into your local economy. 

Two: They create jobs. It takes a village of people to run a bank. Most consumers only see a few tellers, a lender or two, and a branch manager when they visit their institution, but there are many more people working behind the scenes. Loan processors and underwriters, IT and security staff, marketing experts, human resources professionals… The list goes on and on! And that's just the people employed by the bank itself. When you add to the tally all of the individuals who get work because of the loans banks make (think of all the engineers, construction workers, landscapers, and interior designers who are involved in creating a new office building, for example), the number employed because of your local bank gets even bigger!

Three: They're involved in the community. You'll see your local institutions represented at all sorts of community activities, whether its sponsoring Little League baseball teams, supporting local non-profits and charities, serving on local boards, or spending time volunteering. Banks recognize the importance of being involved in local events, too, so you'll often see them participating in parades, festivals, and holiday celebrations.

Four: They're relationship-based. Unlike getting a loan through an online lender where all you interact with is a computer program, when you walk into your local bank you'll probably be greeted by a familiar face, or even by name. Because they're based right there in the community and employ people you know (and who know you), local banks excel at building relationships with their customers. Those deep connections lead to collaboration between customers and bankers, which often leads in the community involvement opportunities listed above. After all, you're more likely to ask someone you know to volunteer at your school festival than a random stranger!

Banking with a local institution has many other benefits for both you and your community. If you have any questions about how your bank, specifically, helps your city, town, or village grow and prosper, visit them and find out!

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