With the dawn of a new year comes new talent and Marsh has welcomed Michelle Sartain (pictured) as its speciality leader in business across North America.
With 25 years of experience at Marsh, Sartain explained that she has been fortunate to have several different roles within the firm which has enabled her to have valuable insights into the depth of solutions it offers and how to approach clients.
“As the head of financial and professional (FINPRO) lines in the US, I had the opportunity to work with a number of specialty leaders and see how each model can deliver the very best service to clients,” she said.
With a breadth of experience within the US marketplace, Sartain looks forward to expanding her exposure to specialty lines in Canada.
“Collaboration at Marsh is really the cornerstone of what differentiates us. Whether it’s within an individual practice or internationally,” she emphasized.
The notion of being borderless to provide the right insights and solutions to clients is an idea that Sartain plans to carry into her new role and, to do so at a high degree, teamwork is pivotal.
Laying a collaborative foundation from the top down promotes better communication throughout an entire organization and allows brokers to have better long-term relationships with clients in this difficult economic environment.
“When it comes to the current state of the specialty market, we have seen some natural disruption over the last two years based on the hard market and pandemic,” she explained. “In the Marsh Global Insurance Market Index in Q3, on average prices were 15% over prior years which was consistent with what we saw in Q2 2021.”
“This marks the sixteenth consecutive quarter of rate increases,” she continued. “Fortunately, we’re seeing a bit of moderation or deceleration specifically in the D&O market, but the opposite is being seen in cyber.”
Sartain noted that Marsh has spent a considerable amount of time with clients discussing the risks that cyber poses and trying to figure out unique solutions that can help them address them from a data and analytics standpoint.
“This is an important part of how we want to holistically think about risks for our clients,” she said.
Working through lines that will see the most growth in the future, such as cyber and M&A, will be a large focus for the firm moving into 2022 and, in her new leadership role, Sartain hopes to bring innovative strategies to the table when it comes to risk management and delegating what needs to be done across all speciality lines.
“It’s an exciting opportunity to engage with the strong leadership that already exists within Marsh,” she mentioned. “I hope to be there to help facilitate the growth in each of the specialty lines as well as help leaders determine what solutions are on the horizon.”
Sartain noted that Marsh is a client centric organization that aims to deliver a high level of value to clients where risk management is top of mind. In order to deliver the best solutions, collaboration with brokers not just within speciality lines but across the entire business is important.
“Moving forward, having a one enterprise view is one of the greatest strengths we have to rely on and what our clients are going to need as the world continues to change,” she said.
“We spent a lot of time thinking about how we can help create market capacity in areas where coverage is limited,” she added. “We recently launch an expanded ESG coverage in the financial lines space and expect to see more of it as it becomes a more important topic for clients around our entire business.
“There’s a lot to learn taking on these new responsibilities, and that new learning is a part of what’s exciting. I look forward to meeting more of our colleagues, working closely with them and seeing the creativity, passion and dedication they deliver.”