What happens when the status quo breaks?

Take a look at Moore’s Law. It is the basis for chip development (the brain of your computer, phone, iPad, or even car stereo) which states that the number of transistors (tiny pieces) double roughly every 18-24 months. If you had 50 people in your full branch, and you wanted to fit 100, what are your options? You could either double the size of your branch (can’t do that here) or, shrink each person by half (transistors are ok with that, to a point, members, less so). The latter is what has been done with chips for almost 50 years (no members were injured in the process).

Highlighting this rapid advancement of technology (why your phone is faster than your 5 year old computer) is Intel’s “tick-tock” development schedule. Begun in 2007, they aimed to release a “tick” update one year, then the next, “tock”. One was a shrinking of the processor, the other, a refining of the capabilities. This consistency made it easy to predict when updates would arrive, and what might be in store. On a tick, power consumption tended to go down (better battery life), while on a tock, speed improved.

In July, Intel announced all this was coming to an end, or at least, a slowdown. There would be a third “tock” (they use a strange clock), because making the next smaller chip is really, really hard. We’re talking areas only a few atoms wide. And you get frustrated when a parking space is small! You can read more about what production at these tiny scales entails if interested (it’s awesome, but maybe not to you). If you’re here, you want to know how this can affect the credit union industry.

It doesn’t.

At least on its own. But, you may have your own “tick, tock” strategy that is coming to an undesirable end. How do you approach a problem when your solution for years, or even decades, no longer works? Think of serving Millenials, innovating your digital portfolio, or any number of other issues faced in the rapidly-changing financial services realm.

New challenges bring with them change. You can’t continue the old; new doesn’t yet exist. Whether you realize it or not, your credit union is in the midst of a “tick, tock” Seldon crisis (Free Twitter kudos if you can name that reference). Look to your long-term plans: Do they make sense in the world of tomorrow, or yesterday?

Image credit (That’s Peter Pan, by the way): https://www.pinterest.com/pin/45176802483981349/