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Your OlyFed

Local Economics Above the Bottom Line

By: Carrie Whisler, SVP, Chief Credit Officer

A few years ago private sector jobs surpassed public sector jobs as the main providers of income in Thurston County. Moreover, of those businesses, 51% had less than 100 employees, meaning small enterprise entrepreneurs drive our local economy.

Five years ago, OlyFed saw this growing opportunity to serve the needs of small businesses as more and more of our customers began asking if they could open accounts and/or borrow funds for their small-scale firms. In response to these escalating needs, I was hired as OlyFed’s first business banker. Fast forward to today and our team has built a robust operation supporting many of the storefronts you see around town and many you don’t because they’re based in a home office.

When you look at the establishments we fund, they are as diverse as our community representing nonprofit service providers, faith-based organizations, veterinary clinics, physicians, retail shops, restaurants, home builders, attorneys, consultants, hair salons, artists and many more. Each of these businesses represents the life’s work of our neighbors and as the late Harvard business professor Clayton Christensen said, “Doing deals doesn’t yield the deep rewards that come from building up people.” It’s what Banking that’s Mutual is all about. When you bank with OlyFed you have direct access to the person making decisions, which gives you more flexibility and someone you can hold accountable and trust in to help make solid decisions for you and your business.

The great American psychologist Frederick Herzberg once said, “the powerful motivator in our lives isn’t money; it’s the opportunity to learn, grow in responsibilities, contribute to others, and be recognized for achievements.” These are the values of local entrepreneurs and this is why OlyFed puts small business economics above the bottom line.

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