A few months ago, as the end of my first year in the William & Mary MBA program was approaching, I was taking consulting and marketing courses and looking for a graduate internship. I got an email back from Chesapeake Bank, a company that, in all honesty, I had not heard of before. A few weeks later, I was at the bank’s HQ in the small town of Kilmarnock, VA (tucked away in the most easterly corner of Virginia’s Northern Neck) speaking with the heads of IT/OPS and Marketing about a special project. Suffice to say that the project would have me doing research about the bank’s products and services and how well they served young people.
After considering some other opportunities, I opted to work with Chesapeake Bank for the summer to lead the research for this project. Over the course of the 12 weeks I worked there, I came to understand why Chesapeake Bank is much more than just a small community bank:
“Okay, Seth,” I hear you say, “This organization is unique and that’s cool but what about your impressions.”
I’m glad you asked. For my job I spent a lot of time pretending to be a customer and walking through what they experience on a day-by-day basis with the bank (opening new accounts, calling branches for help, applying for a home or business loan). I also spent lots of my time interviewing staff, reaching out to firms that offer technical solutions, creating (and distributing) surveys, watching people work, and speaking with customers. There are lots of impressions:
I would recommend to anyone interested in getting a mortgage, a commercial loan, investment advisory services, a point-of-sale system, a receivables-based loan, a job, or even an internship that they consider Chesapeake Bank. My experience this summer has been fantastic; I was able to invest so much of the skills that I had developed in the MBA program and my previous experiences into my work. I know that I made an impact at Chesapeake Bank, but I also know that Chesapeake Bank had an impact on me.