By: Pat Phalen
Executive Vice President
Abby Sockel discovered a passion for trust services early in her career, while working for the original INB. So she was especially excited to join the “new INB” staff in 1999 to help start up the Trust Department.
“I found my niche in working in Trust, and over 30 years later, I would do it all over again,” she says. “I can’t imagine working for any other bank or department, and I wouldn’t change a thing. I still learn something new every day.”
Abby, now AVP Trust Operations, is celebrating 20 years at INB for the third quarter, alongside Jamie Singer, VP Treasury Services. Commemorating 15 years with the bank are Alicia Taylor, Loan Documentation Specialist; Matt Fogal, Credit Analyst; and Lindsay Van Zele, Communications Officer. Celebrating five years of service are Natalie Dodson, AVP, Mortgage Loan Officer; Marilyn Titone Schaefer, VP Communications Director; and Travis Combs, Credit Analyst.
INB Works Hard & Plays Hard
Marilyn says she loves to hear stories about INB’s early days, which always affirms how motivated our staff is, but also how much fun everyone has together.
“When you get the original bank employees talking about those early days, the stories are typically funny, though it’s clear that group was working tremendously hard to build this organization,” she says.
When she joined INB, Marilyn was drawn to, and continues to appreciate, INB’s energizing culture.
“There’s no doubt what the goals and expectations are. These goals force us outside of our comfort zones, but they are also attainable,” Marilyn says. “I appreciate the fact that CEO Sarah Phalen takes the time to visit all of our locations each quarter and share everything she can about goals met and what to expect in the next quarter and even the next year. The planning process is really thorough, thoughtfully explained, and helps us know where to focus our time and energy.”
Lindsay agrees INB staff members are empowered to contribute, rather than be micromanaged.
“Every person has a voice and is encouraged to speak freely,” Lindsay says. “It’s all about collaborating with our co-workers and departments. I love being able to discuss and brainstorm ideas and not ever feel like I said something wrong.”
Alicia said she is driven by another major component of INB’s culture: our commitment to community service.
“One thing that has not changed over the past 15 years I’ve been here - in fact, has only excelled - would be the INB culture of helping others,” she says. “The INB family is made up of so many kind, loving souls that truly want to give back and help their community. Our employees without hesitation selflessly dedicate their time, money, skills and anything more they have to offer.”
From One-Room Meetings to Markets Across Midwest
Many employees point with pride to INB’s growth over their years of work.
“The biggest change that stands out to me over my five years is how much we’ve grown,” Travis says. “It started with branching out to the Bloomington and Champaign markets, and then most recently St. Louis. I look forward to seeing the continuation of this growth and where it takes us.”
As INB has grown, our adoption of new technology has also flourished – enabling our employees to thrive.
Natalie explains: “INB gives me the platform I need to close a loan from start to finish in a positive smooth process for my clients. This makes me confident in asking for new business from my professional contacts, my previous clients, and even family and friends. I have worked at companies that make it so hard that I was nervous to even work with fellow co-workers. I truly enjoy the atmosphere INB has provided me to work in; they provide all the tools I need.”
Jamie laughs that she still remembers when INB employees were able to have all-staff meetings during the workday in a single room. Today’s staff spans many buildings and branches in markets across the Midwest.
“This is not just a job to me; it’s something I helped to build from the ground up and want to continue to see grow each and every day,” Jamie says. “I have been blessed to be able to be a part of the bank since shortly after the doors were opened as a bank with $8 million in assets, and have been able to help it grow to where we are now, at over $1 billion. INB is a big part of me.”