The insurance broking industry stalwarts are committed to developing and expanding talent within the industry by putting their support behind the NIBA Mentoring Program.
Eric Harris, Director of Business Operations – ACS at Aon Risk Solutions says he has always had a number of mentors both formal and informal that he seeks advice from. “For me this has been invaluable in helping me make decisions, focus my development and just generally navigate the industry and my own employer.”
Because of this experience he believes that the NIBA Mentoring program presents a fantastic opportunity for new and up and coming brokers to get advice from more experienced members of the industry that they would not have otherwise had access to. “Mentoring is hugely important for insurance broking, getting a perspective from others parts of the industry and not just within firms helps development of individuals and their relationships.”
“For insurance brokers this is critical as we are a profession that relationships are at the centre of everything that we do. Being assisted by the experiences of others, understanding the good and bad from that can only help us as an industry be better in the future.”
“Another key outcome of this is that it brings us all (the insurance industry) together with a common purpose – the development of our future.”
Maxine McDowell, a long time NIBA mentor and general insurance consultant believes programmes such as NIBA Mentoring almost always show immediate rewards for mentee and mentor alike, “Whatever the business climate, mentoring can lend support to any one person working in insurance broking.”
“On a broad basis and not necessarily related to the workplace, one can gain from having a wise and experienced supporter who genuinely wants that person to succeed, and understands the importance of constancy and confidentiality.”
The role of insurance broking commands a mind for good communication and empathy, also the need for reinforcement and encouragement both inside and out of the office. This is where a keen listener and experienced mentor can offer ways and means to make the role more enjoyable as well as successful.
McDowell says, “From the recent mentoring programme the most important thing that I took away is that no matter what stage one’s mentee is at the right mentor is the best person to have around: one who is able to draw from long experience, to have insight to a challenging career moment, to put things in better perspective.”