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Derek Vater is in the Spotlight!

Derek Vater is in the Spotlight!

Tuesday, December 13, 2022/Categories: Employee Spotlight

Heartland associates are encouraged to share their Heartland stories with their clients. Associates are also encouraged to get to know the stories of their clients…who they are, what they like, why they bank with Heartland. On a monthly basis, it is important to share our associates’ stories in more detail, giving a glimpse into their personalities and accomplishments. Let’s get to know Derek Vater, Branch Manager of the Fort Thomas, Kentucky, location.

As a Northern Kentucky native and graduate of Northern Kentucky University, Derek is proud to introduce Heartland Bank to those in his neighborhood as Heartland is growing its presence the area. He shares, “My team and I do our very best each day to deliver top-level service in the NKY market. We work hard to promote the Heartland brand here and are always exploring new ways to demonstrate how we differ from the other banks in the area.”

“I think we tend to prioritize quality where other banks prioritize quantity. And where other banks might apologize for an inconvenience and shrug their shoulders at the client, we make every effort to reduce or eliminate that inconvenience and work with people. We also are one of the very few banks in the market investing more into our community rather than divesting from brick-and-mortar branches entirely. If the other banks in the market are indifferent to your business, whereas we value that business, why wouldn’t you choose Heartland?” asked Derek.

Not only does Derek value his space within the community landscape, but he also values it within the Heartland family. “In the 18 months I’ve worked here, I’ve found our small size is such a tremendous advantage to have. There are so many dedicated, talented, experienced and engaged people at our company, and they are happy to help answer questions or steer you in the right direction. Not everywhere has those resources on-hand and available.”

He also concentrates on the small details that make a big difference for Heartland’s brand awareness. “In my case, I think quality and excellence revolves around the small details that positively impact a client’s experience. These little details are the kind of thing being missed by our counterparts at other banks. In rainy weather, we walk clients to their cars, holding an umbrella for them. We pick up cigarette butts and other litter in the parking lot and take pride in a clean space, rather than waiting on others to do that work. Those might be more mundane examples, but I think these efforts pay off.”

Derek admits that the coffee bar in his branch is also a game-changer. Stocked occasionally with the super-fancy biscotti from the local farmers’ market, he hopes that this, along with great interest rate yields, brings interested window shoppers in for a look around. He additionally concentrates on the relationships with the city of Ft. Thomas and other local civic groups to share the community banking way of life and the value that comes from a relationship that understands the vision and mission of businesses and individuals alike.

His goals for the future are to uncover and pursue as many leads as possible, continue building relationships in NKY through area community events and to entice the local business association to become an active participate in neighborhood service events. For his out-of-the-office goals, Derek added, “Personally, I am finishing the renovation of two rooms in my cramped, extremely old, high-maintenance house in Newport, Kentucky, and am determined to be done by Thanksgiving without destroying anything else important. It’s been a long project, and I very much am looking forward to deep cleaning once I’m finally done.”

As an outdoors person, he planned a 40-mile canoe/camping trip last year in Missouri that was canceled due to rain. He hopes to replan that expedition for next year as long as the house doesn’t argue otherwise.

If you’re interested in a bank that has Branch Managers like Derek that can steer you away from trouble spots on the road and troubles with your finances, come on over to Heartland and ask for Derek!