What the BIG Bank Forgets (But Their Customers Never Will)

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I was approached by my bank, who we’ll refer to as BIG Bank, ten months ago. Their pitch was, “Gee, we think you are a great customer, and we appreciate your business, so we would like to refinance your mortgage because the interest rate is a bit high.”

After much discussion and diving into details, I went for it. The refinancing would lower my monthly payment, lower the interest rate, and at the same time shorten the length of the loan. A simple no-brainer, right?

Now I think I must have had rocks in my head. Why? It has been a nightmare of bureaucratic bungling, miscommunication, massive paperwork, phone calls, emails, changes to changes to changes and broken promises, an exercise in frustration and huge drain on my time.  A few examples:

The “processor” at BIG Bank of my new loan asked for the same information seven times. I sent the same info seven times.

I had been told that I didn’t need to bring any money to the closing, that I need to bring $5,000 dollars to the closing, that I need to bring $2,000 to the closing, that I need to bring $3,800 to the closing. The amount changed again today.

I was supposed to close last Friday at 11:30 am. They called me at 9:00 am and said there would NOT be a closing—they needed some “additional information.”

It gets worse, and it gets deeper. But this isn’t an article about a big bad bank. It’s about leadership.  Do you see any taking place here?

Process vs. Customer

Unfortunately, this big megabank is more caught up in the process to pay attention to the customer experience. It’s not about you; it’s about me, the guy who bought your mortgage refinancing pitch.

Promises Broken

How can this BIG Bank keep telling me that we are ready, and saying we are going to close, and pulling the rug out from under me? Leaders need to hold their people accountable for what they promise.


No one seems to own the process at BIG Bank. I have a representative who is great, but she is always saying “they need this” or “they need that” and when I ask who “they are” she says her “organization.” The team should be a team overall, not just separate departments.


No one at BIG Bank knows how to apologize. Leaders should teach all team members how to apologize so that it is an apology and not an excuse.


I have been waiting for my refinance for ten months. It is my time that has been taken, and I can never get it back. No one at BIG Bank is thinking about how customers interact with them as an organization, and how much time customers invest to complete a transaction.

But I’m still in because I don’t want to start over, and I have already invested ten months of my time and labor. I will be saving a good bit of money each month on my mortgage, but when all this is done, I am taking the rest of my banking somewhere else. The sad fact is that BIG Bank won’t even notice.

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