Why did you get into insurance?
By accident. I applied for a job at a government department and was offered a job at State Insurance. In those days it was a great training ground.
How would you sum up insurance brokers in three words?
Undervalued; Conscientious; Hardworking.
What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever arranged cover for?
Whilst I have arranged insurance for ‘holes in one’, Yoga Swamis and numerous animals – the strangest or most unusual episode related to a claim for burglary. The client claimed on a large amount of lingerie that was supported by replacement prices from an adult supplies retailer. When asked for proof of ownership she supplied numerous photos of her wearing the aforesaid items!!
How would you change the industry?
Emphasise the need for professionalism by making it a prerequisite for brokers to have a minimum formal insurance qualification (especially principals of firms). If we want to be recognized as a professional occupation we need to be prepared to back it up.
What’s the most important thing a broker can do to develop their business?
Be totally honest and professional with their clients and underwriters alike. Treat clients as you expect to be treated yourself.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
If you don’t know the answer, never guess, always tell the person that you don’t know the answer but you will get back to them with one, and do it.
If you were Prime Minister for one day, what would you do?
Remove Fire Service levies from insurance contracts.
What has been the highlight of your career?
Possibly attaining my Fellowship. I completed study when my children were very young so it was a real sense of achievement when I achieved this. Also starting my company 14 years ago from scratch and still going strong!!
What’s your favoured style of coffee?
Union, league, soccer or other?
All sports but Union primarily, closely followed by league, golf and tennis.
If you could invite three people to dinner, dead or alive, and excluding family and friends, who would they be and why?
Joe Bennett – Columnist / Author: For his humour and insightful commentary;
Jennifer Aniston: Does one really need a reason to invite Jen??
Ritchie McCaw: A real Kiwi icon and someone for whom one has the most admiration.
So humour, beauty and sport….what more do you need??
Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t in insurance, I would be…
Brewing craft beer….NZ has some fantastic brews and I am very much ‘into’ this industry.