NZI.jpg" style="width: 160px; height: 130px; margin: 5px; float: left;" />Why did you get into insurance?
I’ve been planning this career path since I was around 18 years old. It may seem boring but from early on I wanted to either own my own workshop or get into insurance. After amassing 30,000 hours in the automotive industry and completing a diploma in business, a motor vehicle assessing opportunity came up in 2006
and I was the successful applicant. I think you can help more people in insurance and that’s a big motivator for me. It made for an easy decision really. I’ve never looked back, a few promotions and I’ve never regretted one minute of it.
How would you sum up insurance brokers in three words?
Essential to business.
What’s the most interesting claim you’ve ever worked on?
In around 2008 I was asked to look after a vehicle that had been used as a mobile P lab. The vehicle had been recovered in perfect condition, all but the invisible effects of the improvised kitchen/bake-house. While it seemed wasteful at the time, the only logical and socially responsible way to deal with the perfect looking vehicle was to crush it.
How would you change the industry?
There is always a little rhetoric in the general public that insurance companies, and all its connecting parts, are out to decline, avoid or reduce the settlement amount when paying claims. If I could wave a magic wand it would be to make the general public understand we are an honest industry and we will always pay legitimate claims to the full.
What’s the most important thing brokers and insurers can do to improve their relationship?
Treat each other as if we were colleagues sitting next to each other. We’re in this together and it gets tough on both sides from time to time. I’d rather deal with any challenging issues in a constructive phone conversation (not email) with a view to getting results and improving rapport.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Create a life that you don’t need a holiday from.
If you were Prime Minister for one day, what would you do?
If it’s only one day I’d start with a new pair of silk boxers on the expense account. Commission the building of rent to buy houses on unused land for those who are struggling to afford entry level housing, especially in Auckland. Those in the scheme pay 25% less than market value but must sell back to the government at 25% less than market price ready for the next generation to acquire the same benefit.
What has been the highlight of your career?
Every day’s a highlight. I have a passion for seeing the people around me succeed so the highlights are where I’m instrumental in someone else becoming successful, or getting a well-deserved leg up.
What’s your favoured style of coffee?
Flat white, not too hot, not too cold. Not too frothy, not too weak. Yeah, I’m fussy with my coffee and if the barista gets it wrong I’ll shop around next time, just like our clients.
Union, league, soccer or other?
I don’t have favourites here. I’ve promised myself that if I’m asked to play in a game that I’ll say yes regardless of the code. In the last five years I’ve participated in touch, league, indoor netball, surfing, boxing, crossfit and of course golf.
If you could invite three people to dinner, dead or alive, and excluding family and friends, who would they be and why?
Albert Einstein – A few beverages while star gazing. E=mc2. Quantum physics and a Nobel Peace prize. What intrigued him to form his still relevant view on the speed of light? Endless questions.
Nelson Mandela – A man who had genuine loyal followers and a deep seated respect for diversity. What a great leader.
Gordon Ramsay – I’m not cooking! We need a chef capable of a few strong opinions and expletives to keep the evening’s conversation colourful.
Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t in insurance, I would be…
Doing something else I love. It’s not something I think about a lot. Maybe in the motor /motorsport industry. I wouldn’t really care so long as it involved a lot of supportive and inspiring people.