What Does it Mean to Do Right?


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It’s strange to say that a commercial from a bank moves you, but when they pull in Maya Angelou to speak on their behalf, it raises an eyebrow or two.

Maya is the person who is quoted as saying:

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

I could list a whole host of quotes from Maya, but you get my drift. That one, especially, is the mantra for customer experience. So, yea, wow! A bank has her hocking their wares?! Pretty amazing.

The bank I’m referring to is Union Bank. According to their website, they operate retail locations in California, Oregon, and Washington, and they have commercial locations in Texas, New York, and Illinois. They’ve been around for quite some time (150 years), and I remember working with them as a client when I was with J.D. Power and Associates in the early 1990s. I don’t have a relationship with this bank and never have, but I was really intrigued by their advertising in the last couple of months, particularly their new tagline and commercials that involve “Doing Right.”

In the CX world, we talk a lot about doing the right thing at the right time with the right data, right tools, right culture, right people, etc. But I was curious about the “practical application,” especially since Union Bank has adopted it as their tag line.

Best I can tell, they’ve created three commercials and a website to support this message. Here’s the commercial with Maya Angelou.

How does she define “Doing Right?”

  • Being honest and fair
  • Say it, show it, and don’t stop

Edward James Olmos also did a commercial for Union Bank. In his commercial, he defines Doing Right as:

  • Trust
  • Integrity
  • Commitment

Union Bank also has a “generic” commercial with no actors that is called, “Doing Right. It’s Just Good Business.” In it, they define good business and doing right as:

  • Building long-term relationships
  • Continuing lending when customers need(ed) the money most (i.e., during the tough economic times of the last five years)
  • Not getting involved in sub-prime lending

As I mentioned above, they have a website that is all about this new branding. It further outlines what they mean by Doing Right, starting back in their early days:

  • Diversity: hired first female employee in 1890
  • Rewarding entrepreneurial spirit
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Freedom of choice: you get to design your checking account with the features you want it to have
  • Choosing long-term relationships over short-term profits
  • Partnering with small businesses
  • Doubled lending to small businesses through the economic downturn rather than cutting lending or stopping it altogether
  • Supporting the local community and encouraging employees to give through community service
  • Flexible hours so “your hours are bankers’ hours” (facilitated by multichannel banking solutions)

What do you think? Is this how you would define Doing Right, for a bank or for any company? Do you have a relationship with Union Bank? Everything they say about Doing Right is great. But are they living up to these expectations? Do their actions speak as loud as (or louder than) their words?

I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way (s)he handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.” -Maya Angelou

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Annette Franz
Annette Franz is founder and Chief Experience Officer of CX Journey Inc. She is an internationally recognized customer experience thought leader, coach, consultant, and speaker. She has 25+ years of experience in helping companies understand their employees and customers in order to identify what makes for a great experience and what drives retention, satisfaction, and engagement. She's sharing this knowledge and experience in her first book, Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the "Customer" in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business).


  1. Thanks for the blog and for pointing this out. It’s great to see when a company really works at delivering a better customer experience. Hopefully the employees live these ideas.

  2. Thanks, Kim. I agree.

    Would you happen to know anyone who is a Union Bank customer or employee? Would love to hear if they do.

    Annette 🙂


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