Five Minutes With… Tony Philpott, Property Centre of Expertise Manager, Lumley

Five Minutes With… Tony Philpott, Property Centre of Expertise Manager, Lumley | Insurance Business

Five Minutes With… Tony Philpott, Property Centre of Expertise Manager, Lumley
Why did you get into insurance?
Like many students leaving school, I simply wanted a clerical job – in the late 1970’s you chose either a bank or an insurance company. My neighbour worked for an insurance company and recommended I apply for a job at NZI, and the rest is history…

How would you sum up insurance brokers in three words?
The client’s representative.

How would you change the industry?
Given the lessons arising out of the Christchurch earthquakes, I would look to reform how EQC works and how it interacts with the wider insurance industry.

What’s the most important thing a broker can do to develop their business?
Get to know their clients’ business well, and look beyond the standard risk exposures. Ask searching questions of the client, and listen to their response. Ask to walk through the business so you can see what they actually do.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Treat others as you would like to be treated. Integrity and “doing the right thing” were attributes my parents made sure we all lived by.

If you were Prime Minister for one day what would you do?
Meet a broad range of New Zealanders, listen to their stories and celebrate their unique contributions to our society, or simply go sailing with Team New Zealand on the Hauraki Gulf.

What has been the highlight of your career?
Being seconded into managing the Property and Engineering portfolios in a post-Christchurch earthquake environment at Lumley these past two years.
I also enjoyed my many training sessions in Sydney with a previous employer.

What’s your favoured style of coffee?
Latte

Union, league, soccer or other?
Rugby Union. I’ve spent most winter Saturday mornings for the past 13 years watching my two sons playing rugby for club or school. And there’s nothing quite like watching the All Blacks play at Eden Park.

If you could invite three people to dinner, dead or alive, and excluding family and friends, who would they be and why?
Kevin McLeod (presenter of “Grand Designs”) – I really enjoy architecture, and Kevin has a cheeky personality that balances with his expertise in the subject.
Barack Obama – an inspiring and charismatic modern leader.
Pink – a great singer & performer. Dinner certainly wouldn’t be dull!

Complete this sentence: If I wasn’t in insurance I would be...
An architect or landscape designer – the satisfaction of designing in a unique property in a stunning landscape really appeals.