A "Younger" Insurance

By: Kitty Ambers, CPIA, CIC, CISR, NetVU | 11/24/2014

Being a part of the insurance industry for more than 30 years, I have met and networked with a lot of people. I have learned from countless professionals, each having left their mark in ways that will long be remembered. Yet, as I participate in conferences and business meetings, a key element is missing.  There is a noticeable absence of youth in our industry! How important is it for us, as leaders in the industry, to draw the youth towards insurance? 

I say,  “EXTREMELY!” 

Today’s youth are tomorrow’s leaders, and it is our duty to educate them about career opportunities in insurance. The current generation is by far and without a doubt the most influential generation in the history of mankind. They are our inheritors and we have a duty towards them.

Most of today’s young people probably groan every time they hear the word “insurance.” However, as a veteran of this industry, I know exactly how rewarding a career in insurance can be. This industry provides opportunity to start in an entry-level position and work up to a leadership role; we are constantly learning as we serve new clients and constituencies; and we have the ability to make a difference through volunteer service in the many associations that drive our industry forward. These are just some of the many ideals we need to pass on to future generations.

The idea is not to force a career in insurance upon them. But to guide them and educate them about this industry’s potential. Find ways to share experiences and tell lively stories that leave young people with the knowledge that they have choices that are lucrative, and in alignment with their abilities and interests.

Being born in the late-20th and early-21st century, these generations have grown up alongside technology and therefore, they are and always will be more tech savvy than us older folks who are known as “digital immigrants.” Their backgrounds as digital natives is one of the biggest boons of inviting them into our industry. Imagine an insurance industry that hums along with seamless integration between all of the various trading partners involved in an insurance transaction. How much simpler would it be? How much more exciting it would be to young people to be a part of such an innovative industry?

There will come a time when each of us will have to pass the baton. The one question that comes to my mind is, “Who are we passing that baton to?” Are we taking the time and expending the effort to attract the right people to lead our industry into the future? Have we equipped and trained them well enough to carry on for us?

If the answer to these questions is ‘NO', then let us begin today to adjust our approach. Invite a young professional to an upcoming Chapter meeting. Bring a young staff member with you to NetVU Conference. Offer to be a mentor and coach on technical insurance concepts. Participate in the next NetVU Virtual Industry Connection webinar with your staff and encourage questions and discussion after the meeting. Consider adopting new approaches to the old way of doing things, like uses for video and social media in marketing. Show our next generations that change is embraced. I grew up in this industry and it has treated me well for many years. As a member of this industry that I love, I realize that I have a duty to perpetuate its future. I hope you will join me by finding ways to bring youth and energy into our industry, while sharing your experience and historical perspective.

Attention Young Professionals
: We invite you to join the NetVU Young Professionals Chapter to connect with your peers!