VP Commercial Lender in Medina Joe McNeill shares his Westfield Bank story and what it's like to be a part of our team.
Joe McNeill, VP, Commercial Banking:
So my background - I had been in commercial banking for 12 years before I was at Westfield Bank. And actually before I was in banking, I have an accounting degree. So, I worked in private accounting, got sick of sitting behind a screen all day long, no customers, no customer contact - nothing. So I looked into commercial banking. It allowed me to use my accounting background, as well as work with people, which is the most important thing for me. I grew up in a family that - my dad's third of nine and out of all nine of them, seven of them are in business for themselves. So, I didn’t grow up in corporate America kind of family and it just didn't sit right, you know? People are more than just numbers and deserve to be treated that way. Business Development is my main focus at the bank and that can be customers from really all over Northeast Ohio from a loan perspective, as well as deposit.
We're very relationship driven. We don't like to do transactions, so we won't do one off, you know, commercial real estate loans. We like to bank the entire company so that we can act as an advisor and really take care of them. For the first time that you walked through the door at Westfield Bank or even Westfield Group, you feel like you're at home. Everybody is nice. Everybody's welcoming. If you need help, you ask. Everybody's there. It's really a family atmosphere. I have not met a single person, in the entire year that I've been here, that isn't that way. Which I think, again, makes it unique. Even from the hiring process, the people that they go after - they'd spend so much time making sure that that person understands what Westfield Bank is. The way they take care of their employees is like something I've never seen.
I talk to people - I have friends that have worked for this company since they graduated from college and they've never worked anywhere else. They know it's a great place, but they don't know how great it is because they haven't worked from the outside. It's very laid back. Again, they urge you to stay involved in the community and they'll allow you to do that during work time - that you to give back as expected. Obviously, the golf course that we have here at Westfield Bank is great. They have an employee golf league. It’s open to any employee of the company. I put a team together. It's very, very inexpensive. They take care of you, they treat you to beverages every now and then and meals and things like that. But just to have all of the facilities that - there's a workout facility here that’s very, very nice that anyone, that you or your spouse, can use whenever you want. It’s just an unbelievable place to work, it really is. And you feel appreciated while you're here.
What sets Westfield Bank apart from the competition? Number one is the community focus. A lot of the bigger banks now, they can't support every community they're in because they're so large. That, and the fact that, again, the bank has one shareholder, which is Westfield Insurance and Westfield Group doesn't have any shareholders. So, it's really a unique setup that allows us to really, truly focus on our customers. That's a tough thing to compete against - I know, because I did it.