Muhammad Yunus is the Founder of Grameen Bank. Years ago when I was looking for successful banks Grameen topped the list. Yunus was a traditional economist in Bangladesh who while training young students got the spark for a greater idea. The third of fourteen children, he grew up in Bengal with a passion for education. He believed this would prevent him from a life of poverty that suffocates that part of the world. He came running back to his roots with a plan of micro financing. He became a man of resource and refreshment in sustaining small business owners. Formed in 1983, Grameen Bank has one of the greatest success rates in loan repayment in the world. There are now close to 20,00 staff members, and branches around the globe. Yunus is inspiring because he has an intense but simple methodology. He selects businesses and individuals that have a passion, and a drive, and only need the money. He loans to people who can lead a village, a community into enterprising focus. He has defined microcredit, and made a solid branding from the beginning. He did not create a company steeped in preventing poverty and then shy away from substance once it worked. He has maintained a working system that keeps spreading. He has since resigned as Managing Director of the bank, yet he is still the beacon of hope in those communities that think of their next meal every day. He reminds the western world what the marketplace can really look like. Defining success for people who never dreamed of it, and holding onto integrity for people who may have forgotten.
Courtesy of Elizabeth Moody