C-Suite Insight: Sharpen Your Skills and Never Stop Learning

shutterstock_176015801-webAs leaders of their company, C-suite executives are often viewed as extraordinary figures who have reached what seems to be the highest point of their professional game. It is sometimes assumed that these individuals have little to improve upon since they are in such an esteemed position. This is simply not true. The real key to success as a C-level executive is the ability to continue developing and honing crucial skills, while also having a passion to continually learn new things.

Below are two of the top skills that every C-suite executive should possess.

  • Adaptability- As the famous quote by Heraclitus states, “One thing that is constant is change.” In the Property Casualty insurance industry, those words are truer than ever. From an increased influx of millennial employee hires to new technologies that affect daily processes, the industry is in a constant state of change. A C-suite executive’s ability to adapt to and embrace this change is a skill that is crucial to their success, and has a two-pronged significance. First, upper level management must be able to continually adapt to unexpected situations and decipher the best action to take for the betterment of the company. Everyone, clients and colleagues alike, look to the C-suite to lead through times of change by making the crucial decisions that count. Second, C-suite executives should also be the one to create and implement this change. Possessing an innovative mindset that continually seeks out and welcomes new processes and perspectives is what will make themselves and their company truly successful.
  • Relationship-building- Every company is made up of different kinds of employees and deals with all types of clients. As leaders, the members of the C-suite must know how to successfully build and maintain relationships in order for their business to thrive. In a Q &A article by Carrier Management, Farmers Insurance Group Chief Operations Officer (COO) David Traverse says, “I believe with all my heart that you should never take this job if you do not like interacting with people,” when asked about the required qualities of a COO. He goes on to say, “We are paid to be on our game—to manage relationships, and to do it in a way that gives comfort and security to the people that are counting on us. It’s a people job.”

In addition to possessing important skills, upper level employees in the Property Casualty insurance industry need to be committed to continual learning. Successful C-suite leaders know that they must continue to grow, both personally and professionally, if they want to see success for their company and themselves.

Below are two steps company leaders can take to continue career development: 

  • Ask for feedback. One of the easiest ways to learn more about how you can maintain current success or even improve in your position is to simply ask the opinions of those around you. One of the greatest gifts a leader can ever receive is feedback. From the members of your team to your supervisors, everyone can bring a fresh perspective you may initially miss because you are focused in your current responsibilities. These are the people who know your company and industry, so their opinion can be incredibly valuable to the advancement of your career. Feedback fuels the truest form of professional development. 
  • Continue your education. An article by Brett Gleason in Inc.com says, “Leaders usually know that their people need training and development. The smartest leaders understand that the same applies to them–and that the need is ongoing.” Even in a C-level position, there is still so much left to learn and achieve. You’ve invested so much in your initial education and career thus far, stopping when you are in the most influential and important position is a mistake. Whether it’s going back to school, acquiring new certifications, attending educational conferences or seeking out a mentor, there are several ways to pursue self-improvement and career development.

The Dog Days of Summer: Tips to enhance your Work-Life Balance

work life balanceSwimming pools, beach umbrellas, barbeques, and long-days spent soaking up the summer sun.  The Dog Days of Summer are upon us and though school is out until autumn, the learning should continue.  June, July, and August should become the months to make sure that balancing your work life and maintaining a mental equilibrium soar to the top of your to-do list.  While the effects of a high stress work environment and long hours are evident to each employee, employers are dedicating more time and energy to address employee-wellness issues.  According to a report on the importance of work-life balance by Business Improvement Architects, “Employers are becoming increasingly aware of the cost implications associated with over-worked employees such as: operating and productivity costs, absenteeism, punctuality, commitment and performance. [Consequently,] there are five main reasons why companies participate in work life balance programs: high return on investment, recruitment and retention of employees, legislation, costs, and union regulations.”

“Companies that have implemented work-life balance programs recognize that employee welfare affects the “bottom line” of the business.” – Business Improvement Architects

Here are some ways to develop your own homeostasis in your daily work-life balance:

A fresh perspective
It is human nature to veer off your chosen path, losing oneself to the many distractions of life.  We often have moments during a task or process where we stop and realize that we’ve been wasting valuable time instead of being efficient.  We also realize when we get so wrapped up in an effort that went poorly or a meeting that was far from perfect, we lose sight of the big picture.  As The Telegraph’s Hazel Davis points out, “You can’t control everything that happens in your life, so try and create processes, scheduling and timekeeping for those aspects you can control.  Then release the aspects you can’t control so they don’t make you crazy.”  Remembering to step back and objectively analyze a situation or series of events will help you maintain a clear perspective not only for yourself, but also for fellow employees.

Organize, Manage, and Prioritize
So much can be lost amongst the hustle and bustle of daily work.  What was once a tidy, well-oiled machine can quickly morph into the haystack of all haystacks.  Having a well-organized and properly maintained work area can have a positive impact on how you feel about your work place, being well structured also extends to your personal priorities.  The Mood Disorder Society of Canada suggests you “Identify your priorities and adjust your life to make time for things important to you.”  So often, we lose sight of what is important and instead of being excited for new challenges, we resent the burden of unwanted problems.

“Finding a manageable work-life balance is crucial for long-term business success.” –Hazel Davis, The Telegraph

Consider How You Spend Your Time
Ask yourself this question:  On a daily basis, how do you spend your time?  If you are putting in long hours at the office, are you giving the same focus and effort to your personal wellbeing at home?  Amy Rees  Anderson of Forbes explains that, “In all the talk about work/life balance we forget that part of balance is taking time for you.” Taking time for personal activities such as exercising, reading, or simply getting out of the house can do wonders for an overworked psyche.

Recharge
Sleep.  Sleep.  And more sleep.  As time, energy, and inevitably stress increases, the need for extended periods of sleep rises as well.  Martin Bjergegaard of The Huffington Post writes “When you’re sleep deprived, research shows that you make the wrong calls, focus on the wrong tasks and fall into the trap of working longer but less efficiently.”  Remembering that you will be a more efficient and well-balanced employee with a steady amount of sleep can help you set aside the time, regardless of work-load, to achieved a well-rested body and mind.

HOW TO SET YOURSELF APART FROM THE REST

shutterstock_116205967Today, the world is full of job seekers. How can you set yourself apart from the rest? Coleman Search Group (CSG) can coach you and give you the personalized attention that will assist you in preparing to share your expertise and attributes with those who will review your resume and call you for an interview. The property/casualty insurance field is a specialized market. The top insurance companies trust us to recommend and identify the talent they require in a candidate.

You may find yourself feeling at a loss for how to best differentiate yourself from the others who are also posting their resumes and seeking that hard to land interview. It’s more than submitting your resume for review and writing an awe inspiring cover letter, it’s knowing where the decision makers go to source potential candidates.

We refer top insurance agencies to the best-suited candidates for the job based on our first-hand knowledge of each of our candidates. You’re not just a person on paper. We get to know you. Our personalized approach is how we set our self apart from the rest. In turn it’s how we set you apart from the rest. Because we are known as a trusted source for companies searching for qualified candidates, getting yourself in our candidate pool puts you ahead of other applicants.

We help you succeed by getting to know you and your professional goals. We talk candidly with you about where you want to be and how your experience can set you on the path to professional success.

Whether you are wanting to talk to us about fine-tuning your interview skills, reviewing and revamping your resume, or promoting your skills and qualifications to the roster of insurance agencies we consult with, we can help. Helping you be more than a needle in a haystack is what we do best. Insurance agencies call on us to save them the time of sifting through the hay bales and source THE one they are looking for. When we introduce you to a company, they will take notice because you are coming from CSG.

TECHNOLOGY AND RECRUITING GO HAND IN HAND

CSGIf you are a candidate searching and researching the web and LinkedIn for the best insurance companies, technology and process is key. CSG is proud to offer a simplified online process to help identify quality companies and help streamline the online resume submission process by using our candidate portal. Decades of executive insurance experience and our interactive search portal make it easy for you to discover new opportunities.

Our network of decision makers is vast. Connect with us and we can save you valuable time in getting your resume in the pool of talent where the world’s largest insurance agencies go to for filling their niche positions. Opportunity abounds, you just have to know where to look. Let us know what you’re wanting in a career. We are here to help.

We invite you to take a look at our past candidate testimonials. While you’re there take a peek at the client testimonials. We are the expert source for assisting top-notch insurance companies discover talent across the nation.

We consult with some of the world’s largest insurance companies to privately held insurance related businesses, which offers you more opportunity to join the company that is best suited for you. Join us on LinkedIn to stay abreast of what we can do for you. We regularly post job openings. Connect with us and we will recommend companies best suited for you.

We’re Different. We’re Flexible To Meet Your Needs.

shutterstock_160713830Is your company looking to fill a position, but haven’t been able to identify the perfect candidate for the job? Not every company is the same, and consequently, not all needs are the same; Coleman Search Group understands that. We invite you to learn more about how we can help your organization identify the right candidate for your position.

We excel at resolving those hard to fill positions like Agribusiness Underwriting, and with our customized fee structure, we will meet both your talent needs while remaining cost effective. We’re different than other firms in that our search fee is based on a proprietary process rather than historical fee structures that can be disproportionate to your position requirements.

We are also flexible by offering more than one type of search option to better suit your needs. If your organization is looking to attract exceptional executive level leaders while learning about passive talent available across the nation, a Retained Search is the right option. A Retained Search is an exclusive contractual search agreement resulting in a thorough, exhaustive national search process and top-notch candidate presentations.

Time is money, and if hiring high quality, senior level candidates quickly is paramount, an Exclusive Search is the right option. An excellent alternative to a retained search, an Exclusive Search is a customized, engaged search agreement utilizing a consistent, rigorous process resulting in talented candidate placement.

If you are seeking line managers, individual contributors and/or wish to maximize your potential candidate pool, a Priority Search is the right option. A Priority Search is a contingent search utilizing sound, time-tested processes resulting in qualified candidate placement.

More than 25 property casualty insurance companies, including some of the world’s largest, utilize us to fill needed positions because they know that a candidate from CSG is the best candidate for their job. We are here to help you achieve the results you need in your search.

NEW YEAR, NEW JOB?

CSG BIG NEW YEARSshutterstock_145469713

 

It’s the time of year where we reflect and resolve to make the future what we want it to be. The thought of transitioning to a new opportunity with more room for growth and longevity is a wonderful idea. But how do you make it come to fruition? Are you seeking a new role? Making a career change? Or just curious about the industry? Coleman Search Group (CSG) has the tools, resources, and decades of experience to help.

The first step is to get your name out there and in front of THE decision makers. How do you do that? Darryl Coleman, President of Coleman Search Group, has a vast “rolodex”, if you will, of companies looking for both seasoned insurance professionals as well as up and coming talent. Connect with Darryl on LinkedIn and let him know what you’re looking for in your career search.

Even if you are just curious about opportunities in the insurance industry, getting your name in the pool of CSG candidates can open doors you never knew could open for you and your professional future. Your experience, paired with CSG’s company-candidate match making solutions, will lead the way to a proactive search in sourcing the right company and opportunity for you.

Where do you want to be in 5 years? What do you need to do now to prepare for a successful future? Connect with CSG and your career search will go into overdrive. Whether you are seeking assistance with your résumé, wanting interview prep, or simply needing a sounding board, CSG provides candid and honest feedback to prepare you for the future that is in line with your professional goals.

Relocation… it isn’t what it used to be

header-relocationI’m certainly dating myself when I say I remember the days when insurance companies and most of corporate America not only enticed you to relocate, but they paid you to do so! I moved ten times during my 20 year corporate career. Some of the moves were great, and I earned a sales bonus for selling my home before the company had to take it into their inventory to be sold later. Some of the moves were not so great, especially when I did not sell my home for what I thought it was worth, or even worse … I was not able to sell my home and had to accept the corporate buy out. Whether it was a good or bad move based on my limited criteria, I never had to worry about moving without some form of corporate financial support. Well, those times have passed us by, and now you are very fortunate to find companies willing to provide any financial support (and finding a company that still offers to buy your home if you cannot sell it is next to impossible!).

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