What's your job about?
Gallagher is an insurance brokerage, risk management and consulting firm. We are a trusted advisor to clients all over the world on all things insurance. My role as a graduate requires me to work collaboratively with team leaders, account and client managers, assistant account executives and account executives. Day to day, I assist with the insurance renewal process. Each year, our clients need to be adequately covered and changes to their business/personal circumstances need to be accounted for when assessing their insurance needs. The work I do is rotation/team dependent. I may process invoices, obtain insurer quotes and renewal terms. I prepare documents such as quote schedules and insurer recommendation reports. I research current insurance market trends and participate in insurance/broking industry events and discussion forums. I attend client/insurer/strategic account review meetings and shadow brokers I am working with.
What's your background?
I attended school in North-West Sydney. Having a passion for sport (tennis in particular), I started at the University of Sydney in 2012 studying to become a secondary PDHPE teacher. I moved to Camperdown in 2013 where I lived for 6 years throughout my time at university. In 2015, I completed my teaching degree and decided I wanted to do further study as I wasn’t sure if teaching was for me at the time. I would describe myself as someone who likes to balance out analytics with creativity and so I went on to do an Arts degree also at the University of Sydney (2016-2018) where I double majored in pure and applied Mathematics and Gender Studies. My intention was to secure a job in a finance/banking/quantitative graduate role, however, I was offered a unique job opportunity to take up a PDHPE teaching role in Armidale at a girls’ boarding school. Within a few days of hearing about the job, I made the move to Armidale. I was a secondary teacher at PLC Armidale for 3 school terms. Whilst this was a great career opportunity and I had adjusted to life in regional NSW (running PE classes in the snow in the middle of winter and all) I made the decision to move back to Sydney and explore other career options- perhaps something more maths/problem solving related. I applied to a recruitment agency (Proforce) and they thought that Gallagher would be a good fit for me. I went through the application process and was offered the graduate role at Gallagher. I have been in my role for over 1 year.
Could someone with a different background do your job?
Yes! Most of the knowledge and skills required for the job are learnt on the job. It would be beneficial to have good problem solving skills, business acumen, a desire to learn and an interest in the insurance industry. Good communication skills are also a must!
What's the coolest thing about your job?
I think working in the insurance industry is rewarding as people face uncertainty and adversity every day and I am able to help our clients feel confident about facing future adversity/change/things out of our control. I love meeting our clients, finding out about their business or personal needs and working with my colleagues to secure low premiums without sacrificing good coverage. The negotiation process with insurers is something that I have found interesting so far. I love that a large part of your success in this industry is how strong your relationships are with other stakeholders.
What are the limitations of your job?
As I have started in this industry from scratch, some work of a graduate is repetitive but I believe I have a lot more to learn before I reach a stage where I can apply creativity and innovation to assist the business. I enjoy problem solving and this goes hand in hand with creativity so a lack of creative outlet and opportunities for problem solving early on in a career may be a limitation.
3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...
If I could go back in time, I would tell myself to be more open-minded- don’t say no to opportunities where I might meet new people or where the opportunity offers personal growth. Don’t stress about passing/failing exams, trust that you have done/will do the hard work required. Relax and take life as it comes. See every challenge as an opportunity to learn and grow.