Be an insurance ambassador

Being an ambassador for the brand ‘insurance’ is something everyone in the insurance industry should be doing to encourage new blood into the ranks, say industry heads at a panel session at last week’s NIBA Convention.

While NIBA and ANZIIF have the Careers in Insurance initiative, CEO AUB Group Mark Searles points out that it is an industry-wide problem and is in fact, also a world-wide problem that “we just do not have an employment value proposition for young people in our industry that is particularly appealing”.

“I still don’t get why people would rather been an accountant rather than work in insurance,” he joked. But: “It’s an industry wide problem that insurers, those on the distribution side, everyone needs to get engaged and really promote this as an industry that is really appealing to young people.”

Steadfast’s executive general manager Allan Reynolds agrees saying it’s everyone’s responsibility to be “ambassadors for our industry”, pushing the brand insurance “of what our role is out through the community … and push the value that we as an industry add”.

“It’s just spreading that message through to the community,” he adds.

At the same time, AON CEO Lambros Lambrou echoed Searles’ argument that perhaps it is the term ‘insurance broker’ that is part of the problem: “There’s all sorts of connotations with that. One of which is brokers … are people that basically match buyers and sellers.”

So: “One of the things we would do well as an industry is to eradicate the term insurance broker.”

“In reality, what we do as trusted adviser for our clients is much, much more than that. If you think about the broader issue of risk, risk in the global environment is getting more complex, more interdependent,” Lambrou says. “It actually provides a wonderful platform for talent to come into our industry and help us move along the maturity curve in terms of how we help clients. And at the same time take advantage of an industry that still holds relationships very true to its value propositions.”