Workplace culture lands Independence Bank national recognition for 7th Year

OWENSBORO, Ky. — Independence Bank has been recognized at the national level by American Banker magazine as a “Best Bank to Work For” in 2020.

Being named a Best Bank to Work for isn’t a fluke; especially when it happens seven times, the bank said in a press release. For Independence Bank, this accolade is the culmination of its extensive efforts to create a culture that cares about its employees.

Employees are invested in the bank’s success; Independence Bank employees are the second-largest shareholder of the bank through the company’s 401(k) ESOP plan.

“We tell every new employee that they have something to add that will make our bank better.  Feedback from all employees is encouraged, they are asked to reflect on their previous experiences and tell us what works and what doesn’t,” said Jacob Reid, bank president.

So what does it take to get recognized on a national scale as a Best Bank to Work for? That’s what Independence Bank attempts to answer each year in their “5 Things Survey,” the bank said. Employees are asked annually to provide five things they hope never change about the culture at Independence Bank, five things they wish would change and five projects they believe the bank should take on in the future.

“This truly is a revolutionary way to approach culture and employee satisfaction,” said Nick Smith, human resources director. “What this survey does, is not only reveal to us the opinions of our employees, but it does so in a constructive way that allows them to express themselves while contributing to the company’s overall strategic plan. This isn’t just an empty effort on the part of management; we carefully examine these results and consider each and every one we receive. Many of them lead to policy changes, operational shifts, and our focus for the next year.”

The acknowledgment from American Banker comes on the heels of a state designation last month as a Best Place to Work in Kentucky for the 12th year.

“It may sound simple, but I have always believed that if you take care of your people, everything else will fall into place. I tell our managers, ‘Make it fun. Let your staff know they are appreciated and do something out of your way for them.’ This advice has really molded our culture and I could not be more proud of the result,” said Chris Reid, chairman, and CEO. “We truly are a family. We work hard, and it shows. But we play hard too, and celebrate every success.”

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