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IBC spotlights 31 of the highest-grossing brokers in Canada’s insurance industry


Consumers want coverage – but who should be responsible for providing it?

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As the Facebook scandal puts new focus on data security, are your clients adequately covered?


The four types of people you need to build a successful network

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When the name on the door is Berkshire Hathaway, it stays Berkshire Hathaway. In a rapidly changing industry, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance provides welcome certainty, with the enduring strength of Berkshire Hathaway’s top-rated balance sheet and 70 year insurance industry track record. Look no further for stable capacity, creative solutions, and stellar service. We’ll be here, year after year. A++ A.M. Best

AA+ Standard & Poor’s

$240.3 billion total admitted assets*

$129.6 billion policyholder surplus*

Atlanta | Boston | Chicago | Houston | Indianapolis | Irvine | Los Angeles | New York | San Francisco | San Ramon | Seattle | Stevens Point Auckland | Brisbane | Dubai | Dublin | Düsseldorf | Hong Kong | Kuala Lumpur | London | Macau | Melbourne | Perth | Singapore | Sydney | Toronto

*Balance sheets as of 09/30/2017 for the Berkshire Hathaway National Indemnity group of insurance companies.

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strengths and expertise


protection around the world

You know your business inside out. You know your markets, your customers, your competitors. Above all, you know the risks facing your business. At Swiss Re Corporate Solutions, we have the capabilities and the financial strength to meet the risk transfer needs of businesses worldwide. But that’s only half the story. Whether your risk is basic or complex, whether the solution is off-the-shelf or highly customised, we believe that there’s only one way to arrive at the right solution. And that’s to work together and combine your experience with our expertise and your strengths with our skills. Long-term relationships bring long-term benefits. We’re smarter together.

. Swiss Re Corporate Solutions offers the above products through carriers that are allowed to operate in the relevant type of insurance or reinsurance in individual jurisdictions. Availability of products varies by jurisdiction. This communication is not intended as a solicitation to purchase (re)insurance. © Swiss Re 2018. All rights reserved.

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ISSUE 6.03

CONNECT WITH US Got a story or suggestion, or just want to find out some more information?


UPFRONT 04 Editorial

How brokers can conquer the challenge of remaining relevant

06 Statistics





Brody Stonehouse of AC&D Insurance discusses how cannabis coverage will evolve once legalization comes to Canada


Zurich Canada head David Levinson describes how the insurer is arming itself in the fight against the recent spate of natural disasters

Which areas of specialty insurance hold the most opportunity for brokers?

10 News analysis

If your clients haven’t purchased cyber insurance yet, the recent Facebook scandal might change their minds

12 Intelligence

This month’s big movers and shakers

14 MGA update

Why one MGA is relying on technology to fuel its expansion

16 Technology update

Cashing in on the global insurtech boom How to safeguard clients against the growing threat of reputational risk

Discover who made IBC’s annual list of Canada’s best insurance brokers


08 Head to head

18 Opinion



Whose responsibility is insurance in the sharing economy?

NETWORKING FOR SUCCESS While it’s all about who you know, some types of professional contacts are more valuable than others


FEATURES 42 Why slowing down is vital to business success

Three reasons why you’ll be able to get more done by doing less

PEOPLE 44 Career path

A chance assignment led Urs Uhlmann to Canada, but he’s since made his mark on this country’s insurance industry

47 Other life

Finding zen with claims adjuster and yoga teacher Victoria Flemming

20 2


EXPERT ADVICE Auto repair costs are on the rise, but there are some simple steps brokers can take to mitigate them


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Expect more from your insurance carrier

Commercial general liability Cyber risks insurance Directors and officers liability Environmental impairment liability Life sciences Professional liability Property and inland marine Security and protection industry Umbrella and excess liability

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Helping brokers with effective insurance solutions since 1966 Calgary Montreal Toronto Vancouver

30/05/2018 1:38:28 AM



Staying relevant as clients change


nsurance brokers are accustomed to predictions of doom – hints of a loss of relevance in the face of insurtechs, comparison websites and other disruptors. What they’re less accustomed to, however, is one of their own suggesting that the industry as a whole is losing ground with its clients. Yet that’s what Aon CEO Greg Case suggested shortly after announcing that he had extended his contract through 2023, which will keep him at the helm of the second largest brokerage in the world for 18 years. “If I ask you, how is the risk industry doing in terms of relevance to the global economy, you have to say we’re becoming less relevant,” Case told The Financial Times. The examples he gave were stark. Take cyber insurance: Case pointed out that the industry is writing $3 billion in premium at a time when clients in the US alone have reported $450 billion in losses. Insurance, it seems, has focused on selling products rather than innovating – and now it’s being faced with clients who have seen significant changes in other areas of their businesses and lives and

Don’t just sell insurance: Be your clients’ risk expert, guide them on mitigation and become an essential part of their business expect insurance to keep up. Case suggested that businesses want insurers to respond to a “broader definition of risk” and said his company is trying to provide more data and analytics to meet that demand. But what about the smaller broker who lacks the resources of a major player like Aon? The solutions for progress are there if you look for them: Leverage the data you have at your disposal to make strategic plans for your business, be flexible and accessible with a mobile website and social media that can respond to clients who no longer work straightforward 9-to-5 hours, delve into new products, understand your clients’ businesses on a deeper level, and find a niche that becomes your specialty. Don’t just sell insurance: Be your clients’ risk expert, guide them on mitigation and become an essential part of their business – and leverage the available technology in doing so. Selling insurance policies should always be part of what you do. But now clients want more, and you need to give it to them – before someone else does.

The team at Insurance Business Canada EDITORIAL Managing Editor Paul Lucas Writers Lyle Adriano, Hannah Go, Alicja Grzadkowska, Lucy Hook, Libby MacDonald, Bethan Moorcraft, Joe Rosengarten, Heather Turner Copy Editor Clare Alexander


Nir Kossovsky, Karen Gately, Janine Garner, Angela Lockwood

ART & PRODUCTION Designer Joenel Salvador Production Manager Alicia Chin Traffic Manager Ella Dayandante

SALES & MARKETING National Account Manager Eric Langille Business Development Manager Desiree McCue Associate Publisher Trevor Biggs General Manager, Sales John Mackenzie Marketing and Communications Melissa Christopoulos Project Coordinator Jessica Duce

CORPORATE President & CEO Tim Duce Office/Traffic Manager Marni Parker Events and Conference Manager Chris Davis Chief Information Officer Colin Chan Human Resources Manager Julia Bookallil Global CEO Mike Shipley Global COO George Walmsley

Editorial Inquiries Subscription Inquiries Advertising Inquiries

KMI Media 312 Adelaide Street West, Suite 800 Toronto, Ontario M5V 1R2 tel: +1 416 644 8740 Offices in Toronto, Denver, London, Sydney, Auckland, Manila, Singapore, Bengaluru CMCA AUDITED

Insurance Business Canada is part of an international family of B2B publications and websites for the insurance industry Insurance Business America T +1 720 316 0151 Insurance Business UK T +44 20 7193 0935 Insurance Business Australia T +61 2 8437 47OO Insurance Business NZ T +61 2 8437 47OO Insurance Business Asia T +61 2 8437 47OO Copyright is reserved throughout. No part of this publication can be reproduced in whole or part without the express permission of the editor. Contributions are invited, but copies of work should be kept, as the magazine can accept no responsibility for loss.


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t e

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Sharing responsibility









In the brave new world of the sharing economy, who should cover whom? AS INSURERS continue to grapple with the challenges of covering the sharing economy, one thing that’s clear is the burgeoning demand for insurance on these platforms. In a recent survey conducted by Lloyd’s, the majority of respondents felt that more transparent coverage would expand the number of customers using sharing economy websites and apps like Airbnb and Uber. At present, only


of consumers expect insurance protection when using a sharing economy platform


of consumers said the risks of using the sharing economy outweigh the benefits

16% of those surveyed had used such a platform, but 70% said they’d be likely to if they knew insurance coverage was part of the deal. Meanwhile, the majority of respondents also believed transparent coverage would increase the number of people willing to offer services on these platforms. Indeed, 70% of those surveyed said they would consider sharing an asset if it was protected by insurance.


of consumers said they’d be more likely to use sharing economy services if insurance was offered

The platform The provider The consumer

WHERE DOES THE RESPONSIBILITY LIE? When it comes to the question of who should protect the risks of both consumers and providers in the sharing economy, opinion varies considerably around the world. However, there was a common thread: Few respondents considered it to be the duty of the consumer.


of sharing economy providers felt insurance coverage would attract more customers

Source: “Sharing Risks, Sharing Rewards,” Lloyd’s Innovation Report, 2018



Consumers in the sharing economy are woefully unaware of their protection: Nearly half assumed the platform they used provides insurance coverage, although less than a third actually checked.

Lloyd’s found a disconnect among the parties involved in the sharing economy when it comes to insurance coverage: More than half of consumers believe sharing economy platforms should bear the responsibility of providing protection, while 80% of companies believe that either the consumer or the provider should be responsible for securing coverage.








20% 10% 0%




I assumed there I looked in detail Insurance was specific to ensure there never even insurance was specific occurred to me coverage but did coverage not look in detail




I did not care if there was any coverage

Source: “Sharing Risks, Sharing Rewards,” Lloyd’s Innovation Report, 2018





The consumer

The provider

The platform Source: “Sharing Risks, Sharing Rewards,” Lloyd’s Innovation Report, 2018

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Source: Sharing Risks, Sharing Rewards,” Lloyd’s Innovation Report, 2018

TAKEN FOR GRANTED Consumers expect to be protected when they take part in the sharing economy: A full 97% believe some sort of risk protection is afforded for consumers and providers should something go awry. However, their perception of how much protection is provided varies. TO WHAT EXTENT DO YOU BELIEVE SHARING ECONOMY SERVICES PROVIDE RISK PROTECTION FOR THE USER?

Provide complete protection

Provide no protection at all

THE IMPACT OF INSURANCE Although most sharing economy platforms don’t consider providing insurance to be their responsibility, the majority admitted it would have at least some impact on consumers’ decision to use their platform. WHAT IMPACT DO YOU THINK PROVIDING INSURANCE WOULD HAVE ON A CONSUMER OR PROVIDER’S DECISION TO USE YOUR PLATFORM?

67% 7%





Source: “Sharing Risks, Sharing Rewards,” Lloyd’s Innovation Report, 2018

17% 17%

Some impact; consumers and providers view insurance as a factor in their decision to use our product/ service

Huge impact; consumers and providers wouldn’t consider using our service/product if there wasn’t insurance

No Impact

Source: “Sharing Risks, Sharing Rewards,” Lloyd’s Innovation Report, 2018

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Which insurance specialty should brokers target? As brokers look to build a niche, which specialty lines currently represent the greatest opportunity?

Chris Budge

General manager, financial lines group JLT

“Financial lines insurance – particularly directors & officers insurance – is a technical and specialized insurance class with an outsized profile, given the vested interests of those being protected. Little corporate risk-taking would take place in the absence of D&O insurance. For a decade or more, an oversupply of capacity and an apparent willingness by certain insurers to incur rolling years of losses has resulted in a multi-year soft market. Right now there is a real opportunity for brokers with strong financial lines teams who can advocate effectively on behalf on their clients to differentiate themselves from those who don’t.”

Mamie Bell

Michael Sillat

Account executive, personal and commercial lines Stoneridge Insurance Brokers

President and CEO Ethos Specialty Insurance Services

“Cyber liability insurance is a must-have for businesses today. Insurance that protects you in case of a cyberattack might seem like something only large businesses would ever need or could afford, but cyber liability insurance makes a lot of sense for small companies, considering the havoc hackers can create and the damage they can do. An attack could cost a small business their life savings or put them out of business. Cybercrime is one of the fastestgrowing crimes in the world; however, it’s not covered by commercial liability or crime insurance policies, and unfortunately, everyone online is a target.”

“The specialty sector, by definition, is a class that’s difficult to evaluate and offer terms on. We think offering solutions for the entire sector is imperative to brokers. Within the specialty sector, we believe solutions for some of the casualty issues surrounding real estate – be it construction-related or lessors risk – are a growing challenge. We have tackled these two classes head-on by developing a differentiated approach to underwriting these risks profitably through the development of cutting-edge proprietary technology, data analytics and a unique claims handling model. We are very excited about this holistic model.”

A GROWING PRESENCE Specialty lines of insurance can encompass everything from coverage for specific professions or industries, such as lawyers or aviation, to more general products such as kidnap & ransom, directors & officers liability and cyber, which cover a range of industries. Specialty lines represent an expanding segment of the industry: According to A.M. Best’s latest report on the sector, specialty lines grew by 2.8% in 2016, representing the fifth consecutive year of growth.


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30/05/2018 1:40:09 AM



The cyber scandal The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal has brought renewed attention to concerns of data privacy and cybersecurity

IT’S LONG been said that almost every company today is susceptible to a data breach, but it’s a warning that has continued to go unheeded by many companies – until now, that is. Last year was marked by cyberattack after cyberattack, as breaches at companies like Bell Canada, Equifax and Uber and Verizon grabbed headlines and unsettled business leaders. Then, just a few months into 2018, social media giant Facebook became embroiled in a complex data scandal, in which it was revealed that data firm Cambridge Analytica had harvested millions of Facebook users’ personal information for

coverage, the impending arrival of stricter data protection laws in Europe, and IT and security professionals continuing to sound the alarm, business leaders are finally waking up to the realities of cybersecurity in the 21st century, says Mark McCreary, chief privacy officer at law firm Fox Rothschild and co-chair of the firm’s privacy and data security practice. “It’s more widely in the press and part of the daily conversation,” he says. “That has an impact.” The European Union’s sweeping new General Data Protection Regulation [GDPR] has been causing a stir beyond Europe, thanks

“There’s no question that company heads don’t have any idea what [policies] they need, and I don’t expect them to, frankly” Mark McCreary, Fox Rothschild use in political campaigns. The Facebook scandal thrust the wider subject of data privacy into the mainstream once again. As a result, organizations and their leaders appear to be growing more aware of the value of the data they hold and the importance of keeping it safe. But how far do we still have to go? Thanks to an increasing volume of media


to the introduction of hefty fines that apply to all companies that deal with EU nationals, whether they’re based in the EU or not. “Whether you love it or hate it, it has really put this topic into the forefront of the conversation,” McCreary says. Add to that the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal, and the data issue is everywhere. “Think of the number of stories

that produced,” McCreary says. “People may not actually be deleting their Facebook accounts, but they are really starting to pay a lot more attention – and they’re realizing that data breaches don’t all look the same.” But does greater awareness come with greater take-up of cyber insurance policies? A recent survey by Fox Rothschild found that an impressive 70% of respondents had cyber liability insurance in place. However, while coverage was common among respondents, the survey found that executives lack a solid grasp of the policies’ limitations, and just 21% had filed a claim. When it comes to businesses at the smaller end of the scale, figures indicate that both take-up and awareness are far lower. An Insureon poll found that 74% of small businesses don’t have cyber liability insurance, despite the fact that nearly one in six have experienced a data breach.

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1.9 million

Customer email addresses that were stolen from the database of Canada’s largest telecom company, Bell Canada


Approximate number of Canadian consumers who had their data stolen from credit rating bureau Equifax

87 million

Estimated number of people who could have had their Facebook data harvested by Cambridge Analytica, according to ex-employee of the latter

“Many businesses don’t believe that they have any kind of information available that would be interesting to a hacker, when in fact,

better understand policies. “I think there’s no question that company heads don’t have any idea what they need,

“In many cases, it’s not a question of if, but when, a cyberattack will occur. That’s the kind of message we need to be delivering” Jeff Somers, Insureon whether it’s customer data, credit card information or purchasing behaviour, they probably hold information that would be interesting,” says Jeff Somers, president of Insureon, which specializes in small business cover. While some argue that business leaders need to do more to improve their understanding of the cyber risks they face, McCreary believes the onus is on brokers to

and I don’t expect them to, frankly,” he says. “When it comes to cyber at the broker level, it truly is a specialty. It’s something that you have to really understand in terms of how the policies are different and how the claims made are different.” For companies with the resources, McCreary says it’s about education and dollars: bringing in dedicated cybersecurity


Percentage of small businesses that don’t have cyber liability insurance Source: Guardian, Insureon, Manta

personnel and making sure that enough money is being allocated to the cybersecurity budget. For smaller companies, Somers says it’s up to brokers to get the message out there. “I think there’s a lot of education and awareness-building that we need to do as a community to help small business owners understand that this is a risk ... and a part of doing business in our day and age,” he says. “In many cases, it’s not a question of if, but when, a cyberattack will occur. That’s the kind of message we need to be delivering to the small-business community.”

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Archway Insurance

Bay Insurance & Financial

The acquisition will bring the total number of Archway locations to 23 and expand the company's presence in Atlantic Canada

Hub International

Carlton Insurance Brokers

Alberta-based Carlton Insurance Brokers specializes in solutions for the transportation industry

Hub International

ES3 Insurance Services

ES3 is a Vancouver-based employee benefits and pension consulting firm

Hub International

The Benefits Company

Headquartered in Windsor, Ontario, The Benefits Company specializes in benefit and retirement programs

Mario Zganjer

Navacord has acquired a wood products and forestry book of business from Magnes Group broker Zganjer, who will join Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management, Navacord’s GTA-based partner



Aviva automates earthquake coverage for BC residents

Aviva Canada has embedded earthquake coverage in all homeowner and tenant insurance policies in British Columbia. The standard offering comes at no additional cost to new and current Aviva customers. In addition to the earthquake coverage, Aviva is offering optional enhancements to help homeowners and tenants manage different risk levels. While the coverage is currently only available to BC policyholders, the insurer has plans to expand it to other provinces.

Archway Insurance adds a new location

Archway Insurance has expanded to its 23rd location with the addition of Nova Scotia-based Bay Insurance & Financial. The acquisition gives Archway a presence throughout Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Bay Insurance & Financial will maintain its existing location in Tantallon, Nova Scotia, and all employees will join the Archway team, including former owner Ron Bagnell, who will take on a commercial consulting role and retain his life and health benefits business. “As I look toward retirement and spending less time at the office, Archway Insurance provides the right transition for our clients and employees,” Bagnell said. “I trust they are in good hands and will continue to receive the same professional insurance advice and service they have come to expect over the years.”


Encon introduces commercial property product

Encon Group has launched new commercial property insurance product designed to complement its commercial general liability and other business line placements, including errors & omissions, directors & officers and contractors’ liability. “Our product is going to offer our clients the convenience of one-stop shopping for property & casualty, and also construction and environmental products,” said Encon SVP Brian Cane. “Brokers are extremely busy these days, so having the ability to buy both property and liability with ENCON is going to be a significant benefit to them.”

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PEOPLE XL Catlin offers cyber risk assessment tool

XL Catlin has teamed up with cybersecurity specialist RedSeal to create a tool to measure a company’s resilience against cyber risks. The dynamic tool uses RedSeal’s patented network modelling and risk scoring platform to create a network simulation that includes physical assets, as well as those in public and private cloud environments. RedSeal can then use this model to calculate a network’s digital resilience score. The tool is designed help underwriters assess a company’s cyber exposures to help it improve its cyber­security and get better insurance terms.

Beazley ups protection for charities

Specialist insurer Beazley is arming charities with insurance protection for cancelled fundraisers, including cover for income derived from donations made at events. In order for donations to be included, a similar event must have been held at least once before to provide a benchmark for the level of cover required. “Donations raised at events are such an important element of charity fund­ raising that we were determined to offer them some protection,” said Beazley’s Seren Eaglestone.

AIG introduces insuranceby-the-hour app

AIG subsidiary Travel Guard Group Canada has launched a new app that allows Canadians to purchase on-demand travel insurance through their phones. Through the Travel Guard On Demand app, customers can purchase coverage in blocks of time. The app leverages GPS technology, enabling travellers to engage the coverage the moment they leave their home province; the app tracks the number of hours used until they return. According to Travel Guard, the app offers consumers a more flexible way to purchase travel insurance while also giving them more control over their coverage use.





Patrick Cove

Qatar Re

Sompo International

Global head of aviation reinsurance

David A. Crozier

Everest Insurance Company of Canada

Markel International

President of Canadian business

Michael Holden



Canadian business operations lead

Carol Jardine



President, Canadian property & casualty

Aiden Lanzon


Liberty International Underwriters

Branch leader, Montreal

Rebecca Marsden

AXA Africa Specialty Risks

Canopius AG

Credit and political risk underwriter

Melissa McDermott


XL Catlin

Head of pricing, global lines

Kara Owens


Markel International

Managing director, global cyber executive

Debbie O’Sullivan


Markel International

Senior yacht underwriter, marine team

Sarah Robson



President and CEO. Marsh Canada

Anthony Vidovich

XL Catlin


Chief claims officer, general insurance

Marsh appoints new Canadian CEO

Marsh has named Sarah Robson as president and CEO of Marsh Canada, replacing Chris Lay, who is moving into the position of CEO for Marsh UK & Ireland and Marsh Limited. Robson has more than 25 years of experience at Marsh, currently serving as managing director for the company’s US business and as global relationship manager in its insurer consulting group. “We are excited to appoint Chris and Sarah to lead these important regions for us,” said Marsh president and CEO John Doyle. “They are talented, longtenured Marsh executives who will bring a strong focus on our priorities of colleagues, clients and growth.”

Markel names president for Canadian operations

Markel International has appointed David A. Crozier as president of its Canadian business. Crozier will replace Karen Barkley, who is scheduled to retire at the end of the year after a 40-year career in the insurance industry. Most recently, Crozier served president and CEO of Everest Insurance Company of Canada. In his new role, he will be responsible for the strategic direction and development of Markel’s Canadian business. “David will develop Markel’s position in Canada as the go-to name for specialty insurance, building on the great foundations established by Karen and opening up the Markel global product portfolio to the Canadian market,” said Simon Wilson, Markel’s managing director of national markets.

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MGA head looks to technology for growth The Schinnerer Group CEO Christopher Schaper reveals three areas he’s targeting for expansion

These different components drive growth in different areas. For example, Schinnerer is investing in industrial technology to improve efficiencies in the SME market. By building underwriting mechanics into portals, the process of underwriting risk for SMEs is “much more efficient,” Schaper says. For larger businesses, Schinnerer will continue to underwrite in the traditional

“Our technology play is … about working with agents to refine their business processes”

Insurance companies can achieve growth in multiple ways: taking on new staff or books of business, merging with other firms, expanding into new territories and countries, or investing in new technologies. The Schinnerer Group – a global MGA with operations in the US, Canada, the UK and Europe, which writes US$1.2 billion in premium each year – is focusing its expansion plans on the latter.


“We’re aiming to double our size, and to do that, we’re thinking about investing in different technological capabilities,” says Schinnerer Group CEO Christopher Schaper. “When we think about technology, we break it down into three component areas: industrial technology such as portals and apps, analytics technology such as predictive modelling, and financial technology.”

ARAG expands its Canadian presence

ARAG Services Corporation has bolstered its growing operations in Canada with the addition of a new team member. Nancy Babeu will take on the responsibility of principal broker for ARAG in Quebec, as well as being the driving force behind business development in Quebec and Eastern Canada. A P&C insurance veteran, Babeu joined the legal expense insurance world about four years ago as a broker consultant at DAS Canada, making her one of only a few specialists in the country in this market space.


manner, but will complement the human approach with analytic and financial technology. Its aim is to use financial tech capabilities in different ways than they’re already being used in the insurance industry. Technological advancements aren’t just supporting the growth of The Schinnerer Group’s underwriting capabilities. Schaper also hopes they will improve efficiency and ease of doing business for Schinnerer’s agent and broker partners. “Everything we’ve constructed is for the agent, which we view as a very key part of our entire business process,” Schaper says. “Our technology play is not just about creating portals. It’s also about working with agents to refine their business processes and to enable them to spend more time providing highvalue services to their client base.”

Dual International makes Canadian underwriting debut

Dual International, the underwriting division of Hyperion Insurance, has launched in Canada. Leading the team will be Michael Shore and Dave Alexander, both of whom are experts in specialty lines. “We are very pleased to launch Dual in Canada and to do so with a great team in Mike Shore and Dave Alexander,” said Dual Canada’s Phil Hoyt. “Their proven underwriting and industry knowledge are perfectly suited to Dual’s business model and ability to provide brokers with superior service, products and leading technology.”

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Gary Hirst President and CEO

A voice for the Canadian MGA industry


Years in the industry 34 Fast fact CHES Special Risk is founding member of the Canadian Managing General Agents [CAMGA] and currently serves as the organization’s membership secretary

What is CAMGA all about, and how can MGAs get involved? Established in 2017, CAMGA is intent on serving the interests of its members before the federal, provincial/ territory and regulatory agencies, and to cooperate with other MGA trade associations around the globe. Joining CAMGA is very simple – an MGA applicant fills in an application on our website, and the board will agree to membership, assuming the entity is of good standing in the marketplace.

What plans or developments does CAMGA have for the near future? Currently, the Canadian market sector has no independent representation or voice for the commercial P&C MGA sector, unlike the AAMGA in the US, MGAA in the UK, as well as other associations in Australia, South Africa and the like. CAMGA aims to represent and support all commercial market MGAs in Canada, in front of both federal and provincial regulators. The intent is that, as professionals, we can provide valuable support to members in terms of knowledge, information and finance. It is also intended to provide insurers and business service providers with clear direction and understanding of the needs of an MGA.

In your opinion, what makes a good MGA? MGAs should ensure that certain criteria are met at all times. First, the insurers they represent should be of the highest financial standing and able to meet their financial

April acquires MGU with group health focus

In an attempt to diversify its Canadian business beyond the wholesale P&C market, insurance services group April has acquired a 93% equity interest in Benecaid, a managing general underwriter and third-party administrator specializing in group health insurance for VSEs. The remaining 7% equity will be held by Benecaid’s management team, which will remain in place. Based in Toronto, Benecaid has 53 staff members and serves more than 22,000 clients, translating into about $93.9 million in premiums.

commitments to their policyholders. Second, insurers must be fully compliant with the regulations in the provinces and territories in which they operate. Finally, MGAs must encourage their staff and retail broker producers to continue their education and training to ensure they are of the highest standing. For best practices, MGAs will faithfully execute the underwriting guidelines as laid out in their contractual agreements with the insurers they represent. They should act with utmost good faith in everyday dealings, and gather and keep all data necessary for assessing a risk confidential and safe from third parties at all times. MGAs should also remain current with the laws and regulations affecting their organizations in the provinces and territories in which they operate.

Which provincial insurance regulations should MGAs pay more attention to? MGAs should always be alert to any concerns or comments made by regulators and to work, where possible, within the guidelines currently set down. There’s nothing of significant concern at present, but who’s to say that this might not change in the future?

What are your thoughts on the current state of the MGA industry? The MGA industry is a very exciting industry to work in at the moment – various market changes have seen more business come into the MGA market appetite, and the market is growing and becoming a lot more innovative.

South Western Group changes hands

The Canadian Broker Network [CBN] has sold South Western Insurance Group [SWG] to Three Holdings, a privately held insurance services group. The deal will allow SWG to align with a group strategically invested in the MGA business segment, while freeing CBN to focus on creating insurance solutions. SWG staff will remain under the leadership of president John Barclay. “This is a good deal for both parties, and we look forward to our continued support of SWG,” said CBN chairman Michael Robinson.

iA Financial snaps up Abex Brokerage Services

iA Financial Group has acquired MGA Abex Brokerage Services. Founded in 1986, Abex serves independent life insurance and investment advisors in the Western Canada. All of Abex’s operations will be fully integrated and assumed by iA subsidiary PPI. “We are pleased and excited to continue supporting our independent advisors as part of a strong, national organization,” said Abex president Kevin Miller. “We are confident that this transaction will ensure a strong, stable future for our advisors.”

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TECHNOLOGY UPDATE NEWS BRIEFS Marsh launches new digital incubator in San Francisco

Marsh has launched a new digital incubator called Marsh Digital Labs, which will focus on experi­menting in emerging technologies and developing innovative products, new business models and strategic engagements with clients, carriers and insurtech companies. Based in San Francisco, Marsh Digital Labs is currently exploring new products in the small commercial and consumer business, cyber, sharing/ gig economy, autonomous vehicle, and workers’ compensation sectors. In addition, Marsh recently joined the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance and is actively experimenting with Hyperledger and other blockchain technologies.

Northbridge enables claims appraisal via smartphone

Northbridge Insurance has launched a new claims appraisal service designed to speed up the claims process and ensure that customers get their payouts faster. The service, Express Claim, allows customers to use their smartphone to take pictures of damage on their vehicles and then submit the photos to a Northbridge Insurance claims adjuster for processing. Adjusters can potentially provide customers with an appraisal in half a day, and can also help customers find a preferred collision repair centre and arrange for a rental car as needed.

Crawford & Co. unveils business interruption loss calculator

Crawford & Company has launched an online loss calculator that can help manage business interruption losses. Designed as an enhancement to the company’s Crawford Forensic Accounting Service offering, the


calculator is geared toward retail and wholesale business interruption claims where the loss duration is 14 days or less. Prompts guide users through a five-step process to ensure that the calculator has all the necessary information. “This tool was designed to assist our clients and the marketplace in determining the initial extent of a business interruption loss, set reserves and map out an appropriate course of action,” said Crawford & Company’s Paul Hancock.

Willis Towers Watson upgrades Radar pricing software

Willis Towers Watson has launched Radar 4.0, an updated version of its pricing software. The update allows users to build gradient boosting machines and classification models directly within the platform’s decision support environment. The software can be used in conjunction with Willis Towers Watson’s point-of-sale rating software, Radar Live, allowing users to directly deploy enhanced rating and underwriting strategies. “In increasingly competitive global markets, Radar 4.0 delivers a simplified and efficient process,” said Willis Towers Watson’s Colin Towers.

Blockchain solution for proof of insurance on the way

The first commercial blockchain solution for proof of insurance is seeing the light of day, thanks to brokerage giant Marsh and project partners IBM, ACORD and ISN, which hope to put a new blockchain network into production later this year. “Marsh sees great opportunity in leveraging blockchain technology to better serve our clients,” said Marsh’s Sastry Durvasula. “We believe strategic engagements such as this one … will help accelerate the adoption of further blockchain applications benefiting our clients across industries.”

Chasing the global insurtech boom Insurtech continues to gather steam – so how can carriers and brokers take advantage? A recent Accenture report reveals that the number of insurtech deals worldwide increased by 39% in 2017. The total value of deals, meanwhile, increased by 32% to $2.3 billion. North America is leading the way: North American deals accounted for $1.24 billion, or 46% of the deals last year; European deals only accounted for a third of all insurtech transactions over the same period. The report also found that the most popular insurance segment for investment is property & casualty, which accounted for 42% of investment in 2017. As the global insurtech boom continues to gain strength, what does this all mean for brokers and independent agents? Accenture insurance practice leader Michael Costonis believes that insurtech will not replace brokers and agents, but instead enhance the way all insurance professionals do business. “We’re starting to see clear recognition that a partnership model can be forged between insurtech and the broker that will allow the broker to take advantage of insurtech capabilities without being disintermediated,” Costonis says. “Can the broker bring a more compelling prospecting or analytics capability into its suite of offerings that is powered by an insurtech? Absolutely.” Insurers and brokers are already playing a big role in driving technology in the industry through their investments, Costonis explains. “The next step is for insurers and brokers

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to use insurtech as a springboard to innovate across their entire organization,” he says. “After all, $2.3 billion is a small slice of the pie when you consider that insurance is a $4.2 trillion industry.”

“The next step is for insurers and brokers to use insurtech as a springboard to innovate across their entire organization” A lot of the initial insurtech work has been focused on the personal lines space – wearables and telematics have enabled usagebased insurance, and the Internet of Things has changed the way analytics and Big Data are managed. Those same ideas can be applied to commercial insurance, especially small commercial offerings, Costonis says. The small commercial insurance space is likely to go digital with distribution and will soon rely on similar technologies. “Moving forward, I expect to see products associated with blockchain and AI really catching steam,” he says. “Insurtech is no longer just a target for private equity and venture capital – it’s a global phenomenon.”

Jeff McCann

Transforming in one small step


Years in the industry 6 Favourite thing about insurance “The great thing about this industry is that it’s very relationshipdriven, networking and doing business over lunch. Insurtech won’t change these fundamentals, and I’m not good at much, but I’m good at lunch.”

What can you tell us about Digital MGA Marketplace? The mission of Digital MGA is to be the most broker-centric wholesale insurance provider in the world. We want to make it easier for an individual broker to do their job, so all of our products can be immediately quoted and bound online. Our underwriting team is a computer, so that sets us apart from the norm. With no legacy systems, we’ve built a wholesale insurance company leveraging every available digital best practice. We also support brokers with a variety of services such as digital marketing consulting, a free CRM, blog articles, white papers and video content for them to brand and distribute to their clients.

Do you have any new developments in the works? We’ve signed our first few insurance company partners, are aggressively designing product, have contracted several brokerage distributors, have filed for licensing and have raised investment capital in a pre-seed round. It takes patience and discipline to organize the contractual framework for our business model, but we’ve made exciting progress in our first four months.

Why should brokers maintain an active online presence, and how can they go about doing that? Every industry must adapt to changing buyer expectations. People are online, and they expect businesses to be online. It’s also the first place we turn when we start our research for a purchase. Brokers should see this as an opportunity to proactively answer questions and provide expertise before a prospect reaches out for a quote. Brokers are at various stages of their own digital transformation. For many, it’s about taking one small step and building basic online infrastructure – have a mobile-friendly website complemented by a Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter account. For others who are more advanced, it’s about using those platforms and others to engage prospects and customers. The best way to engage is to create valuable content that is of interest to your clients – which generally means not talking directly about insurance.

What are your thoughts on the current state of insurance technology? We know that AI, machine learning and blockchain will change the insurance industry. But today, in 2018, I have day-to-day interactions with large brokerage groups that don’t even have a mobile-friendly website. Most brokers and carriers are focused on retiring legacy systems and moving to a new broker management system or carrier management systems. This slows the innovation life cycle, as these system overhauls are massive undertakings and resource drains. Once implemented, API-friendly systems will allow for data to flow more smoothly between organizations and will accelerate digital transformation. That is the exciting industry future we’re keeping ahead of.

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Reputation resilience Angry stakeholders, coupled with rapid communication, can expedite the economic impact of a reputational crisis, writes Nir Kossovsky WE’VE KNOWN for years that sexual harassment and abuse existed in many workplaces. We’ve known that a deranged individual can acquire a gun and devastate numerous lives. And we’ve known that we were surrendering personal information to Facebook and third-party companies in return for a more customized user experience. But the behaviour of Harvey Weinstein, Steve Wynn, Cambridge Analytica and the tragedy of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting have upended our society’s tolerance for industry sins. As a result, companies and their leaders now face the threat of economic damage from angry stakeholders. We are living through a time of cultural change, when shifting attitudes are altering public perceptions of what’s important and what’s tolerable – basically, what different stakeholders expect. Companies are recognizing the need to react to external events in ways that meet stakeholder expectations, as Chubb and Lockton did when they disassociated themselves from the National Rifle Association. A credible threat of a consumer boycott no doubt spurred their action.  That’s why, in the face of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook shares dropped dramatically. Initial reaction to the company’s attempts to explain itself has been mixed; many stakeholders feel the company failed them by not recognizing their implicit expectations and therefore not acting sooner, more forcefully and more transparently. Financial damage due to what The Econo­ mist termed a “reputation meltdown” is not


just manifesting itself at Facebook. The cost of reputational attacks against companies has risen by more than 500% over the past six years, according to research conducted by my firm, Steel City Re. The onslaught is fuelled by weaponized social media; it’s ironic that the cultural shifts we are seeing today are occurring at so sweeping a pace in part because of Facebook itself, which has made rapid communication so prevalent. 

ment for businesses. Today, it is crucial for companies to consider reputational risk sideby-side with operational risk; they are both threats to assets of value that can be managed, measured and insured. An operational crisis occurs when something a company is expected to control goes wrong. Often this involves a failed control for ethics, innovation, safety, security, sustainability or quality. A reputational crisis occurs when stakeholders believe the company didn’t make an authentic effort at mitigation – and they’re disappointed or angry that the company’s leadership failed them.  Companies that want to thrive in this new cultural climate need to embrace the concept that reputational risk is at least as consequential as operational risk. They need to task their enterprise risk management teams with the mission of understanding stakeholder expectations and building reputation resilience. And they need a risk management plan that enables them to build an affirmative narrative about corporate practices and governance before a reputation risk storm hits. Such a narrative requires the storytelling power of

“Companies that want to thrive in this new cultural climate need to embrace the concept that reputational risk is at least as consequential as operational risk” Social media is being harnessed by influencers, including politicians, who are adept at channelling the public’s anger or disappointment toward specific targets. The generally angry mood that exists today has led politicians, the media, activist investors, customers and other stakeholders to direct their anger not only at the corporate entity, but also toward the individuals who lead it.  And while large companies have significant marketing resources available to protect and rehabilitate their brands, individual executives and board members are far more vulnerable and will often wear a ‘scarlet letter’ for life.  At the moment, this climate is coinciding with shifts in expectations that are suddenly and profoundly changing the risk environ-

third-party warranties, insurances and bonds to reassure stakeholders that the company is well run in a way that is pre-positioned, simple to understand and completely credible. Building these defenses can mitigate risk, deter attacks, and provide outside validation of the company’s practices and governance, with the added benefit of casting potentially damaging events as anomalous rather than systemic failures.  Dr. Nir Kossovsky, CEO of Steel City Re, writes extensively on corporate reputation, arbitrages algorithms measuring its value, and helps companies forge reputation resilience with innovative mitigation and insurance-based strategies.

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BRAVING THE STORM Zurich Canada president and chief agent David Levinson talks about an illustrious career that’s taken him from coast to coast and reveals how Zurich is poised to weather the exponential change that’s on the horizon

HARD WORK and dedication to a company do pay off. David Levinson would know – he’s been with Zurich for 23 years and counting. Before starting his climb up the ladder at the insurer, Levinson was the senior manager in audit practice at KPMG in New York. He eventually found his way to Zurich and served in a long list of roles, from corporate controller to chief financial officer of commercial markets for North American operations. In the CFO role, he spent time in Canada as well as the US, and developed relationships with the team at Zurich’s Canadian division. “When they asked me to bring the two organizations together in Canada, it was perfect because I had a long relationship with the Canadian folks up here,” he says. “I knew a lot of the brokers, and I knew their offices, so I was the perfect person to actually bring the two together.” On the way to becoming president and chief agent of Zurich Canada, Levinson also served as regional leader of commercial markets for the West, where he took on responsibilities for underwriting, sales and talent management for key business units. Yet no matter what side of the country he was on, the work he did has served him well in his current position. “When you take on the role as the chief agent, it’s interesting because all of your experiences come back,” Levinson says.


“Your regulatory experience comes back, your broker management experience comes in, the finance comes back – so all the functions of a chief agent, I experienced all along in my career at Zurich.” Some of Levinson’s most memorable times at the company, however, have come from trips abroad.

than it did a hundred years ago – or even a decade ago. “I think the world is changing exponentially,” Levinson says, highlighting driverless cars, cyberattacks and geopolitical issues as a few indicators of change. “There are so many things that didn’t exist five years ago, and I think the risk manager’s job is so much

“I think the world is changing exponentially. There are so many things that didn’t exist five years ago, and I think the risk manager’s job is so much harder than it was before. They definitely need people to stay ahead of these exposures” “When I was the controller, I had to present the six-month results to the Zurich board in Switzerland,” he says. “I got to meet the board of directors; I got to spend time with them, talk to them, figure out who they were. They were interested in what I was doing, and it was a very cool experience.”

Looming challenges As Zurich closes in on its 100th anniversary in Canada, it’s safe to say that the insurance market looks completely different today

harder than it was before. They definitely need people to stay ahead of these exposures.” The physical world we live in is changing, too, as environmental disasters continue to ravage countries across the globe. Canada is certainly not immune: A recent report from Catastrophe Indices and Quantification found that between 2008 and 2018, Canada experienced more than 100 catastrophes, which cost the Canadian insurance industry $17.4 billion in losses. Notably, out of the top five costliest events during that time, four

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PROFILE Name: David Levinson Title: President and chief agent Company: Zurich Canada Based in: Toronto Years in the industry: 23 Career highlight: Meeting clients and team members from around the world, and presenting results to the Zurich board in Switzerland as the company’s corporate controller

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have occurred in the last five years; number one on the list was the Fort McMurray wildfires in 2016. “We’re exposed to quakes, we’re exposed to floods, we’re exposed to wildfires,” Levinson says. “I think people are really looking at their exposures in a big way. It’s an eye-opener because when you start looking at where these catastrophes were – like when you look at the wildfires people had – we had wildfire zones with a high risk, but we had a bunch of fires that were not in those designated highrisk zones. It makes you think, how do you even really protect yourself?” According to Levinson, these recent disas-

investing in the right materials for structures so they don’t collapse during a hurricane, or having a response plan in place if building in a wildfire zone. “As companies are investing and making repairs or even looking at where they want to build a plant, they should be thinking about these things,” Levinson says. “A natural catastrophe is going to happen, so how can you best prepare and protect yourself?”

Local growth In addition to monitoring ever-changing environmental risks, Zurich has been making moves to expand its footprint. In 2017, the

“I think people are really looking at their exposures in a big way … We had wildfire zones with a high risk, but we had a bunch of fires that were not in those designated highrisk zones. It makes you think, how do you even really protect yourself?” ters have prompted insurers to take a fresh look at their exposures. “If you have earthquake exposure, [alongside] all the climate changes that are going on, you’re going to start paying attention to your exposure to earthquakes; you’re going to start paying attention to floods in Alberta,” he says. “Start looking at how you’re going to mitigate the risk, how much risk you want to write, how much you want to lay off. There’s still a lot of capital in the insurance business, so how you’re going to mitigate that risk is important.” Zurich Canada does a lot of work to prepare people for the disaster-ridden future that’s quickly turning into reality. The insurer has a client-facing site devoted to mitigating risk that touches on topics like


company acquired an insurance distributor, a telematics solution provider and a travel insurance provider, Cover-More, which Levinson hopes to grow in Canada. Zurich also streamlined its number of distribution partners and is seeking to grow upper middle-market and large corporate risk-managed customers in a multitude of industry segments where it has the capabilities and expertise to help. After being in his current position for well over a year, Levinson sees blue skies ahead. “I’m very optimistic about Canada,” he says. “Canada has great, great opportunity – we have a great brand, and people love our international capabilities as well. It’s a real draw. We’re out there, we’re pounding the pavement, and I’m pretty optimistic and excited.”



Year the group was founded as a marine reinsurer in Zurich, Switzerland


Year the group opened its first branch office in Canada


Approximate number of Zurich employees worldwide


Approximate number of countries and territories Zurich serves

US$33.1 billion

Amount of Zurich’s gross written premium and policy fees in 2016


Zurich Insurance Group’s rank on Forbes’ list of the world’s biggest public companies

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IBC celebrates the top tier of Canada’s insurance industry by shining the spotlight on 31 brokers who are leading the pack

FOR THE sixth year in a row, Insurance Business Canada is singling out the best-performing insurance professionals from around the country. These 31 insurance brokers collectively earned more than $38 million in commission revenue last year, and more than half of them (64%) crossed the $1 million mark. While the majority of this year’s Elite Brokers are veterans


with more than 10 years of experience in the industry, the 2018 class also contains a few rookies who have proved that impressive results can be achieved in just a few short years. On the following pages, this year’s Elite Brokers share the factors that contributed to their success. Whether fresh faces or perennial winners, what they all have in common is a passion for helping their clients meet their insurance needs.

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METHODOLOGY Brokers who achieved $750,000 or more in commission revenue in 2017 qualified as an Elite Broker. Each broker was required to provide specific details about his or her business to be eligible.






Kevin Stedman

Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management



Wayne LeGear

Hub International Insurance Brokers

British Columbia


Melanie Stefiuk

Hub International Insurance Brokers

British Columbia


Luke Horcica

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Mark McKinley

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Mark McKay

Highcourt Partners



Joe Palmer

Palmer Atlantic Insurance

New Brunswick


Tony Di Corpo

Racine Chamberland



Sarah Irwin

Aon Reed Stenhouse



Don Barr

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Lane Gross

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Terence Hogan

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Tanya Sinclair

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Scott Irwin

Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management



Ravi Grover

RBC Insurance



Michael Bastone

Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management



Michael Georgiev

Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management



Steve Leibel

Leibel Insurance Group



Magdalena Cammidge

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers



Thomas Watson

Guardsman Insurance Services



Mark Shaul

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers


Average clients: 343


Brock Longworth

Cornerstone Insurance Services


Average commissions: $1.27 million


Marcel Moldovan

Levitt Insurance Brokers



Neil Bryson

Bryson Insurance



Bill Beere

Hub International Insurance Brokers

British Columbia

Average policies: 672


Allen Walter

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers


Average clients: 406


Morgan Roberts

Mitchell & Whale Insurance


Average commissions: $1.45 million


Leah Marchon

MHK Insurance



Dean Marchon

MHK Insurance



Simar Sidhu

Diamond Insurance Group



Mo Radmacher

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers


CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS Every Elite Broker achieved at least $750,000 in commission revenue last year, but where do these astounding insurance professionals stand as a group?

TOP 5 Average policies: 503 Average clients: 430 Average commissions: $2.27 million

ALL ELITE BROKERS 2018 Average policies: 453

2017 25

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Brock Longworth

Cornerstone Insurance Services



Tony Di Corpo

Racine Chamberland



Marcel Moldovan

Levitt Insurance Brokers



Kevin Stedman

Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management



Thomas Watson

Guardsman Insurance Services







Brock Longworth Cornerstone Insurance Services



Tony Di Corpo

Racine Chamberland



Kevin Stedman

Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management



Mark McKay

Highcourt Partners



Luke Horcica

Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers


31 MO RADMACHER Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

IBC: What do you enjoy most about the insurance industry? Mo Radmacher: The insurance industry, commercial in particular, is so vast. Every day is unique and something can be learned. Today, more than ever, the industry is changing and evolving, and it’s exciting, but this industry is still so unknown to people outside of the space. We get to learn the inner workings of businesses and get to see different perspectives on how an organization can be run.


30 SIMAR SIDHU President Diamond Insurance Group Ontario

IBC: What strategies have you relied on to grow your business? Simar Sidhu: I’m very social. I take part in a lot of community events, which helps me meet new people.

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• Canada’s first truly consolidated construction policy. With the amalgamation of the CoC, Wrap Up and E&O under a single policy, together with our aggregate deductible across all lines, makes this is Global First in the construction sector. • Our supporting Insurers take both a collective and proportional approach to every claim as opposed to an individual one. This eliminates the Insured being caught up in the assignment of liability issues seen in the current market placement structure. By virtue of this team approach we will create very significant savings for all parties in time and expense. • Being 100% independently financed, developed and supported in Canada, Merlin operates with complete impartiality allowing us to focus on Canada’s booming construction sector, without prejudice or preference.


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where the customer is the primary focus. We’ve made insurance a collective responsibility instead of an individual one. Should there be an indemnifiable claim resulting from course of construction, wrap up and / or project Architects and Engineers’ errors and omissions, then the claim is paid without dispute.


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27 MORGAN ROBERTS Sales broker Mitchell & Whale Insurance Ontario



Manager, commercial business development and senior client executive, commercial lines MHK Insurance Alberta

Senior client executive MHK Insurance Alberta

IBC: What advice do you have for new brokers? Dean Marchon: Keep learning and never give up. Our industry is very competitive, and knowledge is the key to success. You will never know everything, so don’t pretend that you do. We are resources for our clients, and as long as we know how and where to get the answers and provide sound advice based on that knowledge and experience, that’s what makes us valuable to our clients. Also, listen to what your client or prospect is saying. The process is not about us – it’s about our clients. Determine what they need, and not what we want.


IBC: How can brokers boost business? Leah Marchon: Stay on top of market­ place conditions and new niche products in order to educate your clients. Also, if you have the luxury of being surrounded by mentors, tap into that knowledge and embrace suggestions. Don’t consider it personal criticism; consider it an alternative strategy. You never know what angle is going to appeal to a prospect. IBC: What advice do you have for new brokers? LM: Don’t get down on yourself when you fail to win a new account. Consider it an opportunity to discover new aspects of business that you might not have been aware of.

IBC: What was a key strategy you used to grow business in 2017? Morgan Roberts: I can’t give away all my secrets, but the main strategy is simple: Pick up the phone and get back to the client as soon as possible. To hit numbers like this in personal lines sales, it’s about showing the clients you care, making a personal connection and talking to as many people as possible. I make sure I’m always auditing my workflows to ensure I’m working as efficiently as possible, and I have an amazing support team to help.

26 ALLEN WALTER Allen Walter Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

IBC: What’s the most important trait for an elite broker to possess? Allen Walter: Being able to maintain your focus. While the economy may have its ups and downs, it just creates different scenarios and opportunities to add value.

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ELITE BROKERS 21 MARK SHAUL Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

23 MARCEL MOLDOVAN 25 BILL BEERE Account manager Hub International Insurance Brokers British Columbia

IBC: How can brokers improve their relationships with clients? Bill Beere: Try for personal meetings or phone calls. There is too much electronic communication.

President Levitt Insurance Brokers Ontario

IBC: What advice do you have for new brokers? Marcel Moldovan: Focus! Follow one course until you’re successful.

22 BROCK LONGWORTH 24 NEIL BRYSON Account executive Bryson Insurance Ontario

IBC: What’s your secret to success? Neil Bryson: I like to have a lot of face time with clients. The better we understand each other, the more of service I can be.


IBC: What’s the most important trait for an elite broker to possess? Mark Shaul: Be extremely clientfocused – everything we do needs to be focused on delivering value to our clients. Also, develop an intimate understanding of, and take an interest in, your clients’ business and industry sector, as well as the things – both in business and personally – that are important to them. Show them you care!

Operations manager Cornerstone Insurance Services Saskatchewan

IBC: What strategies have you relied on to grow your business? Brock Longworth: I am currently focusing a lot on the online space, attracting and offering real-time quotes in personal lines and small to mid-size commercial. Also, I’m expanding to all Western provinces via online offerings.

20 THOMAS WATSON Vice-president Guardsman Insurance Services Ontario

IBC: What advice do you have for new brokers? Thomas Watson: Insurance is a wonderful industry with limitless potential for growth. Focus on your clients’ needs first, and everything else will take care of itself.

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18 STEVE LEIBEL Vice-president Leibel Insurance Group Alberta

IBC: What advice do you have for new brokers? Steve Leibel: Be genuine – if you look after the client’s best interest, then the commission will follow.

16 MICHAEL BASTONE Partner and account executive Jones Deslauriers Insurance Management Ontario

19 MAGDALENA CAMMIDGE Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

IBC: What do you enjoy most about the insurance industry? Magdalena Cammidge: I specialize in professional liability and specialty risk, as I enjoy the complexity of those products. No two days at the office are alike, and each day I learn something new or craft a unique custom insurance product to address a very specific aspect of risk. IBC: What’s the most important trait for an elite broker to possess? MC: Motivation and persistence in all aspects of life.

17 MICHAEL GEORGIEV Partner and account executive Jones Deslauriers Insurance Management Ontario

IBC: What’s the secret to your success? Michael Georgiev: Providing my customers with the expertise and knowledge that is required in this niche market has been a contributing factor to my success. I strive to attract and retain clients and rely on a strong service team to help achieve this.

IBC: What’s the secret to your success? Michael Bastone: In order to be successful in today’s fast-paced environment, it’s important to hold the client’s best interests in mind. My focus is to keep an innovative mindset and good work ethic in order to find the best solutions for each client.

15 RAVI GROVER Insurance advisor RBC Insurance Ontario

IBC: How do you provide top-notch service to clients? Ravi Grover: I go above and beyond. Each client is special, and every situation is unique. 31

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ELITE BROKERS 14 SCOTT IRWIN Partner and account executive Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management Ontario

IBC: What’s the secret to your success? Scott Irwin: Working proactively and with a strategic focus is key to delivering the best client experience possible. I continue to measure my success based on client satisfaction and the ability to convey loyalty to each and every existing customer and future prospect.

12 TERENCE HOGAN Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

13 TANYA SINCLAIR Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta


IBC: What do you enjoy most about the insurance industry? Terence Hogan: Personally, what I love most about the insurance industry is the engagement with clients and learning about their business and specific risk issues. Every business and every business owner or executive has a story, and it is that story that I always find very motivating and highly interesting. As the insurance industry continues to find ways to commoditize businessto-business professional services and provide better data or solutions, there will always be a need for strong entrepreneurial and business acumen to deliver professional advisory services. It is that opportunity to engage clients and business colleagues that I enjoy the most.

11 LANE GROSS Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

IBC: What is the biggest challenge for brokers in your province? Lane Gross: The biggest challenge for Alberta brokers today is the ability to adapt to the ever-changing economy. Our clients are facing variables that are extremely difficult to control, and our ability to manage their risk is key in helping them navigate through these market conditions. IBC: What’s the most important trait for an elite broker to possess? LG: The ability to communicate your passion with simplicity and to bring a calming influence to what can be a chaotic environment.

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7 JOE PALMER President and CEO Palmer Atlantic Insurance New Brunswick


IBC: What’s the secret to your success? Joe Palmer: I specialize in long-haul transportation and try to stay focused on what I know best. I’ve also developed a risk services division that provides clients safety, compliance and risk management services beyond what I do as an insurance broker. In 2017, I developed a concierge service for my clients that provides them with tools and resources specific to their industry and business.

Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

6 MARK MCKAY 8 TONY DI CORPO 9 SARAH IRWIN Principal Aon Reed Stenhouse Ontario

IBC: What are the keys to succeeding in this business? Sarah Irwin: Listen to clients, under­ stand the insurance markets and listen to underwriters.


Vice-president and damage insurance broker Racine Chamberland Quebec

IBC: What advice do you have for new brokers? Tony Di Corpo: Be a good listener to your clients, form great connections with companies, always be there at claim time, network, build a strong reputation, and be invested.

President and CEO Highcourt Partners Ontario

IBC: What strategies have you relied on to grow your business? Mark McKay: Networking, cloud-based solutions and focusing on aligning insurance strategy with business strategy.

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Principal, surety Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

Principal Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Alberta

Account executive, strata division Hub International Insurance Brokers British Columbia

Making his second appearance among the top five Elite Brokers, Mark McKinley is a partner and account executive for Lloyd Sadd’s construction risk services within the firm’s bonding division, responsible for overseeing the service delivery platform for Lloyd Sadd’s surety practice. Prior to joining Lloyd Sadd, McKinley spent nine years specializing in bonding with major international insurance brokers. Having been named an Elite Broker three times, McKinley knows a thing or two about what constitutes a top insurance broker. “I believe having a genuine interest in the success of your clients sets you apart,” he says. “Anything you can do or suggest to help protect their balance sheet or contribute to their bottom line will not go unnoticed.”

Luke Horcica strives to be the “one to call” for his clients as he learns their businesses inside and out in order to build strong partnerships. Horcica arrived at Lloyd Sadd in 2000 with a background in underwriting. He quickly found his niche as an account executive and focused his career on the industries he knows best: hospitality, construction and real estate/property management. Horcica believes elite brokers must possess an entrepreneurial spirit. “As I explored career opportunities after university, my dad suggested insurance,” he says. “I recall him telling me that the great thing about a career as an insurance broker is that ‘there aren’t any limits to your success – every day you can choose to go out and grow your business.’”

For Melanie Stefiuk, listening to her clients’ needs and responding accordingly has been a major component of her success. Making her first top five appearance on IBC’s Elite Brokers list, Stefiuk has more than 20 years of experience in insurance. In 2002, she joined the broker side of the industry as a customer service representative in Hub International’s commercial insurance department. Since then, Stefiuk has been promoted to commercial insurance marketer and commercial account manager, and in 2014, she joined Hub’s strata division, where she is currently an account executive. Today, Stefiuk is responsible for providing strata clients, including property managers and unit owners, with the best service and coverage.

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2 WAYNE LEGEAR Senior vice-president Hub International Insurance Brokers British Columbia

With more than three decades of insurance experience, Wayne LeGear is the epitome of a broker who is at the pinnacle of his career. A nine-year recipient of Hub International’s SHARP Award at the platinum level, which honours the company’s top producers, LeGear is a sales legend within the entire organization. Specializing in commercial and transportation insurance, LeGear is responsible for Hub’s auto dealer program. Leading by example, he advises new brokers in the industry to specialize: “Get involved in the industry you want to insure,” he says. LeGear began his career in 1982 as a partner in LeGear Pelling Insurance before becoming a partner in Lakeview Insurance nine years later. In the mid-1990s, Lakeview Insurance joined Hub, where LeGear continued to manage his office, in addition to several other Hub locations in the Greater Vancouver area. In 2002, he was promoted to vice-president of auto insurance operations, where he was responsible for all aspects of the company’s auto division. In 2009, he made the decision to return to a full-time senior account executive role in order to devote himself to his commercial clients and help propel the growth of Hub’s CADA-endorsed auto dealer program across Western Canada.

1 KEVIN STEDMAN Partner and account executive Jones DesLauriers Insurance Management Ontario

For the second year in a row, Kevin Stedman sits at the top of IBC’s Elite Brokers list. With nearly three decades of insurance industry experience, Stedman takes a dedicated and sophisticated approach to his knowledge and understanding of insurance and risk management. Focusing on the transportation, construction, commercial auto and manufacturing markets, Stedman’s willingness to work hard to service his clients has been a major factor in his success. “I always have my clients’ best interests in mind when servicing them and ensure that I manage my time accordingly to provide them with the best client experience possible,” he says. “Another contributor to success is having a strong service team to back you up.” Outside of his daily responsibilities, Stedman keeps busy by actively volunteering for various kids’ programs in the Peterborough area, as well as serving as a hockey coach for the Peterborough Petes Minor Hockey Association and on various boards in the area. 37

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A blossoming business AC&D Insurance’s Brody Stonehouse shares the blunt truth about Canada’s cannabis insurance market IBC: How did you get into medical cannabis insurance? Brody Stonehouse: I went to university for business administration, with a focus on sales management and marketing, and when I graduated, I took a job selling timeshares. I didn’t really like it, so my father, who’s an insurance broker, offered me the opportunity to become a broker at AC&D Insurance. I started as an auto insurance agent in BC and worked my way up to commercial insurance, where I worked as a marketer, producer and sales manager. Around the time when compassion clubs were becoming popular in Vancouver, I knew some patients who used cannabis for medical purposes, and they knew people who were trying to open some of the early compassion clubs. They wanted to get these businesses started but couldn’t find anyone to insure them. It was at that point that I started to work with different insurers to get basic insurance so these businesses could lease space to operate.

IBC: What were your strategies for growing business? BS: Early on, I researched other jurisdictions where insurance products for cannabis businesses were more developed, such as in the United States. I contacted brokers and insurers operating in Washington, Colorado, Oregon and California to discuss the products available in these states. I also looked at industries where coverage needs were similar to the cultivation of


cannabis, such as manufacturing and alcohol production, to see what kinds of coverage those businesses needed. From a personal cultivation perspective, I also looked into how to insure homeowners doing medical cannabis cultivation in their homes. So with a homeowner’s policy, I looked at how other seemingly high-risk items, such as wood stoves, were handled by insurers.

IBC: What’s in store for the future of cannabis insurance in Canada? BS: Because we’ve had the advantage of learning from the development of this segment in states where medical and recreational marijuana is legal, I believe Canadian insurance products will evolve faster. In addition, since medical and recreational marijuana will be federally legal in Canada, unlike in the US where it’s still illegal federally, we will see more acceptance of cannabis as a mainstream business, and thus the market will be more robust. But right now it’s all up to legislation.

Personally, my focus has been mostly on cultivation facilities in British Columbia and Alberta, but I do have some business in Ontario, and I think the issue with Ontario will be that dispensaries will be run publicly by the LCBO. I think that’s a mistake, because private enterprise is able to adapt more quickly to serve consumers’ needs. This approach will also limit the opportunities for brokers in Ontario. From my perspective, Alberta, with its fully privatized approach, is really at the forefront when it comes to the cannabis industry, and it’s where we will see the industry develop based on the needs of the consumer.

IBC: What are the major challenges in this market? BS: The major challenges in general are the preconceptions and/or misconceptions of insurers about the cannabis industry. Many insurers are still taking a ‘wait and see’ attitude, and the legislative changes are also holding things up because insurers don’t know what

THE FUTURE OF CANNABIS COVERAGE With the nationwide legalization of recreational cannabis expected to occur this summer, the need for specialized insurance in this space will only become greater. In the coming months, AC&D Insurance, along with associated company NetSurance Canada, will launch GrowSurance, a digital brokerage that will focus on delivering insurance for cannabis cultivation, dispensaries and products for homeowners’ personal cultivation. “GrowSurance will be all online, so it won’t limit us to any jurisdiction,” Stonehouse says. “We will be able to deal with clients all over Canada and communicate with them through our digital platform and face-to-face via online video chat, so we will be able to assist clients across the country.”

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“In my experience, the claims you see for cannabis dispensaries are the same claims you see with other businesses … Insurers think there is more risk in insuring cannabis businesses than there actually is” FAST FACTS: AC&D INSURANCE SERVICES

Year founded: 1969

Headquarters: North Vancouver, BC

the final marketplace will look like. They want someone else to jump in the pool first before they get in. One of the companies that is typically the first in for evolving risks is Lloyd’s, but being in the UK, I don’t think they’re as exposed to the same level of understanding of cannabis as a medical product as we are. In their mind, the jury is still out on whether there are any medical uses for cannabis. In my experience, the claims you see for cannabis dispensaries are the same claims you see with other businesses: water damage claims, small thefts, etc.. Insurers think there is more risk in insuring cannabis businesses than

there actually is. I think the insurance companies that come in early will prosper because they are going to get the market share. It would be great to see some more Lloyd’s syndicates get on board to understand the business and consult with the industry to develop products. I get calls from clients across the country who say they found me online because their broker said no to cannabis insurance, even when there are a lot of MGAs where you can find coverage. Many brokers are just not willing to put in the work to learn about cannabis insurance and help these clients, so they end up coming to me.

Locations: AC&D is a member of the InsureBC Group, which has more than 70 locations throughout BC

Number of employees: 600+ within the InsureBC Group

Leadership: Jack Meier, partner; Joe Stonehouse, partner; Brody Stonehouse, general manager; Rob ten Vaanholt, sales manager 39

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How to build a network that drives your success Assembling everyone from your pit crew to your butt-kickers involves much more than cocktails and canapés, writes speaker and author Janine Garner

HOW MANY times have you been told that networking is “essential for your growth and personal success”? And yet when it comes to networking, many of us are overwhelmed by the pressure of where to start, confused by what appears to be an overcomplicated world of opportunities to connect online and offline, and overstretched by the demands on our time. The truth is, the adage “It’s not what you know; it’s who you know” has significantly more weight in this 21st-century world of busy-ness, in which jobs are filled before they are advertised, previously un-thought-of collaborations appear out of nowhere to create new and competitive markets, forming referral relationships is increasingly hard to do yet is critical to business growth, and everyone seems to be friends with everyone else on social media. A Harvard Business Review article entitled “Managing Yourself: A Smarter Way to Network” found that “the executives who consistently rank in the top 20% of their companies in both performance and well-being have diverse but select networks … made up of high-quality relationships with people who come from several


different spheres and from up and down the corporate hierarchy.” So, the questions to ask are: Who is in your network? How much input or influence do they really have on what you’re doing or trying to achieve? How much do they truly know you and your goals? How much can they help you? Effective networking has to be about the genuine – about the interplay of a select group of people who are working closely together, strategically creating plans to succeed. Here are three key tips to building a network that works:

he said, would result in the creation of other subgroups and tribes. Momentum starts with a significantly smaller circle of influence that you are securely in the centre of, rather than being mixed in somewhere with all the other participants. A small group of people providing quality thinking and behaviours will push you further than you could ever go alone. An effective network bridges a smaller number of more diverse individuals with differing levels of expertise and varying ages, genders and experience. Such networks are cross-functional, cross-hierarchical and cross-industry, delivering balance and diverse thinking. Identify the quality of people you surround yourself with, not the quantity. So, who are the right people to have in your network?

Identify your critical few British anthropologist Robin Dunbar posited that there is a limit to the number of relationships humans can comfortably maintain – 150, to be precise. He suggested this is the number we can manage to maintain stable relationships with – remembering each other’s names, keeping in contact and doing each other favours. Anything more than this,

Find your personal cheer squad – your promoters. According to research from the Center for Talent Innovation, people with promoters are 23% more likely to move up in their careers than those without sponsors. Your own personal cheerleading squad is key to your success. They are by your side through thick and thin, never giving up on

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other people, businesses and experiences. Consciously consider who else you need to learn from, add value to, engage and collaborate with. Successful networking is about under­ standing the connections you should be making, as opposed to those you are making. It’s about asking who you need to surround yourself with to inspire you and help you grow. It’s about being brave enough to seek out and connect with new individuals.

Exchange value

you, always dreaming big with you. Get your support team in place – your pit crew. Your pit crew can make or break a race. They add stamina to help you run the marathon of your dreams, navigate complexities and recover from setbacks. They help you learn from mistakes and keep pushing you on anyway. They celebrate your wins, remind you of your achievements and keep it real. There’s no doubt that climbing the ladder of success can be a lonely task that requires grit, determination and perseverance. Having the right crew to help you overcome any difficulties and challenges, and keep you mentally tough and balanced, is essential. Discover people who make you better every day – your teachers. Harvard professor Linda Hill says, “You can’t think of something new unless you are being pushed to think in new directions, and you can’t do that unless you are engaging with people who have a different viewpoint.” A life of continuous learning is essential to growth. The right teachers teach you mastery, guide and stretch your thinking, challenge your

ideas, and encourage you to keep learning, because they know that this constant curiosity creates real opportunity for growth, achievement and success. Have some accountability buddies – your butt-kickers. Linda Galindo, author of The 85% Solution: How Personal Accountability Guarantees Success, believes butt-kickers are our secret weapon for success. “Working with a partner prevents the ready-fire-aim approach that a lot of entrepreneurs use,” she says. Love them or hate them, we all need butt-kickers – those individuals who help accelerate the journey, pushing you to do more and holding you accountable for your actions. Butt-kickers listen to your dreams and accelerate your goals by making sure you stick to them. They hold you accountable for your actions and decisions and ensure you do what you say you’re going to do – and then some.

Be brave and diversify Step out of your comfort zone, strategically expand your circle of influence, diversify your connections, and explore

Find ways to constantly add value. Ask yourself if you're doing enough with and for your connections. Consider what more you could do to add value to them and their businesses. Model the behaviour you seek in return. Give knowledge unconditionally, open doors willingly, and share insight to drive continued growth and success for others in order to attract them and engage with them. Richard Branson famously said that “nobody can be successful alone,” and in our fast-moving business world, we all need a network that works for us. Take a long, hard look at your network and ask yourself: Who really matters? Who is teaching you mastery and knowledge? Who is the key influencer pushing you to be and do more, holding you accountable to your dreams? Who is promoting you, acting as your personal cheer squad, inspiring you to become more? Who is keeping you balanced and aligned, caring and connecting you with others? Choose your network wisely. Build a circle around you that allows you to transform and become so much more. Janine Garner is an internationally acclaimed Fortune 500 mentor, keynote speaker and author of It’s Who You Know: How a Network of 12 Key People Can Fasttrack Your Success.

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Why slowing down is vital to business success Ever feel like life is moving too fast? Do you wish you had more time to work on your business? The great news is you can – you just need to slow down, writes Angela Lockwood IN BUSINESS, there is a lot to do. Whether it’s your own business or you’re working for a company, there is always an endless list; people expect a lot of you, and a mountain of tasks is vying for your attention. Whether we like it or not, the situation is not going away, and if future predictions are correct, things are not going to slow down. In fact, strap in, because we are in for a long and fast ride. Advancements in technology, an overwhelming amount of choice and everchanging expectations are impacting our ability to cope with the speed of change and the expectation that we will keep up. Unfortunately, there’s no big red button in front of us to press when things are getting too overwhelming. Instead, we keep persisting with working late, working on weekends and pushing through sickness in an attempt to get the basics done, even though we know the long hours and constant connectivity aren’t doing us any favours. Constant connectivity to people, technology and our workloads is resulting in our work and life becoming overwhelming, making it hard to ever switch off. Our frenetic pace – racing from one meeting to the next and one client to the next – is affecting our ability to take time out, slow down, switch off and refuel. We are in a state of chronic ‘overconnec-


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tion’ – overwhelmed and overstimulated. With our bodies and minds constantly ‘switched on,’ our health, well-being and relationships are increasingly paying the price. Despite our best efforts to manage focus and productivity alongside creativity and progress, as a society, we are finding that the pursuit of ‘more’ and ‘now’ is not working, and is an ever-growing concern we must address before it gets out of hand.

our lives and see what is happening to our health, our relationships, our businesses and our goals. When we are too bogged down in our to-do list, looking down constantly at our devices, our field of view narrows, and we can miss the opportunities that are right in front of us. Giving ourselves the opportunity to step out of the detail of our day and take a look at the big picture will provide perspective on whether we are moving in the

3 Sharper focus. We all know what it feels like to hear the alarm sound when it seems like we have just fallen asleep – it’s awful! Sleep deprivation is known to affect our ability to make rational decisions and respond to situations, and it impacts our mood and emotions. Not getting enough sleep could be holding you back in business, and if you are not an early riser, then you could be missing out on your peak period of produc-

Life role evolution Over the last two decades in particular, we have seen a significant shift in life roles for men and women. Stay-at-home roles and parttime work that were predominantly undertaken by women are now being embraced as options for men, allowing them to pursue their passions outside of work or share family responsibilities with their partners so they can both develop careers. The evolution of our value of work and its purpose in our lives on a personal level is creating a shift in our expectations of our workplaces as we look for new ways of working that allow us to be engaged in productive and meaningful work, in addition to spending time with family and pursuing our interests. From workplace health and well-being incentive programs to paid mental health days and health education sessions, the responsibility for employee health and well-being is now falling to both the employee and the employer. This continual shifting of work roles and workplace expectations is evidence that people are searching for ways to better manage their lives and all this involves, knowing that without optimal health, we are not performing at our best.

Doing more by doing less To achieve more, we do not have to keep pushing ourselves to do more; in fact, we are capable of achieving more by doing less. How? By slowing down. By taking our foot off the pedal, we are allowing ourselves three important gains that will improve our motivation for work while also improving our productivity and progress. 1 Perspective. When we slow down, we can take a big metaphorical step back from

By taking our foot off the pedal, we are allowing ourselves three important gains that will improve our motivation for work while also improving our productivity and progress right direction. This can be as simple as setting a reminder to look out the window, going outside to eat lunch to take in your surroundings, or reflecting on your week with a friend or partner.

tivity. Early morning is when our circadian rhythms are at their most alert, our attention and energy peak, and it’s the perfect time to work on priorities, setting a frame of clarity and calm for the rest of the day.

2 Renewed energy. Ever tried sprinting a marathon? It would be impossible. Our bodies are not designed to go full throttle for long periods without rest. When we try to push ourselves beyond our limitations, the effects of burnout take over, and we find ourselves without the energy, focus and motivation to get through the day. Energy, focus and motivation are three factors crucial to success in any business. When we slow down, we give our bodies the time they need to rest and re-energize, boosting their resistance to illness, meaning fewer sick days and more energy. With energy, we become agile in our responses to unexpected challenges; this enhances our ability to make better decisions, and our creativity flows. If you live life at full throttle, slowing down can feel like you are being lazy or wasting your time. But that is far from the truth. Resting can be as simple as a fiveminute break where you stand up from your desk and take a big, deep breath. Slowing down is necessary if we want to keep moving forward with energy and stamina.

Making time to slow down The argument that slowing down is impossible in today’s society is not true, and there is ample evidence to show how people are successfully integrating the skills of slowing down into their fast-paced lives. Slowing down can feel like an impossible scenario when we lead such full lives, but switching off isn’t about doing more; it means doing less! If we focus on the payoff of taking time to slow down – better health, improved energy, clearer thinking and a renewed motivation for work – switching off will no longer seem like a cop-out or a luxury, but instead a necessity if we are to keep up with the pace of life.

Angela Lockwood is an occupational therapist whose retreats, corporate education programs and keynotes help organizations, schools and individuals prioritize their health and wellbeing. Lockwood is the author of Switch Off: How to Find Calm in a Noisy World and The Power of Conscious Choice. 43

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His planned two years in Canada became two decades, but Urs Uhlmann has always had a clear idea of where he was headed An interest in business compelled Uhlmann to study commerce; a family friend who worked in insurance provided him with an introduction to the industry via the apprenticeship required for his degree “I was shipped around from the mailroom to claims to sales – I was exposed to every side; it gave me a good base and developed my interest in insurance at an early age”





JOINS ZURICH With an eye toward what he hoped was an international future, Uhlmann took a job with Zurich

“They were building up their international business and looking for professionals to join their head office to work on that. I had it in mind that it would give me a little time to spend in other countries” 1998

SQUARES UP TO Y2K While in the role of vice-president, Uhlmann was put in charge of a project to replace Zurich’s business handling system in preparation for the anticipated hardships of the millennium. The company-spanning project gave him a new perspective “It was a complex project with extraordinary time pressure, but it helped me gain a much broader view of the company than before. It helped me understand the importance and complexity of the processes that go on behind the scenes”

2018 JOINS XL CATLIN Recently named CEO and country manager of XL Catlin’s Canadian operations, Uhlmann has some ambitious goals “I think we have a lot of upside potential. I do believe we can be among the top three largest commercial writers in Canada, and that Canada can be amongst the five largest countries for XL Catlin” 44

1986 His national service in the Swiss Army resulted in Uhlmann’s first management experience when the native German speaker became an officer and was tasked with training French-speaking troops “It was the hardest time of my life. It helped form my perspective on leadership principles and gave me the opportunity to use my fellow solders as guinea pigs. Everyone wants to contribute to the goal – that’s true in general – so the question is, how do you give them the opportunity?”

1996 COMES TO CANADA In his role with Zurich, Uhlmann was in constant communication with the American and Canadian offices, which stood him in good stead when his colleagues in Canada sought people to assist in shifting the focus of the organization “They approached me to help them; they felt like I was the right person, and I was definitely ready to go. I felt Canada was a very attractive place, and the office was small enough that I could have a great impact”


SEES THE POSSIBILITIES Zurich’s 2002 sale of its personal and small business lines in Canada marked Uhlmann’s first involvement M&A activity “I became part of the team to deal with the transaction; I was in charge of new business. I learned a lot – it put me in a position to lead. I believed there was an opportunity to build something big, and I was really interested in doing that”

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“It’s a lifestyle, not just a physical practice,” F le ming says of yoga. “The commu nity is always supporting a nd encouraging each other.”

A BIT OF A STRETCH Victoria Flemming escapes the pressures of claims processing by unfurling a yoga mat THE FIRST time Halifax claims adjuster Victoria Flemming went to an introductory yoga program at her local community centre, she was instantly hooked. The activity stilled her anxiety and sparked a devotion that prompted her to retake that introductory course until eventually the program closed down. Compelled by a karmic desire to share the feeling that she enjoyed on the mat, Flemming signed up for training to become a yoga teacher herself. “I wanted people to know how good they would feel after a class,” she says. Since then, she has taught free classes at her workplace and has become part of a wellness committee at work. “Claims is a very stressful field,” Flemming says. “Aspects of yoga – deep breathing and muscle relaxation – really help with that stress. I’m lucky I found yoga.”


Times a week Flemming practices yoga


Number of yoga mats Flemming owns


Hours of training required to teach yoga

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EXPERT ADVICE of options sometimes makes parts availability a challenge, especially with higher-end and imported vehicles. The combination of limited parts availability and the increased complexity of repairs results in longer repair times (along with an increased cost for rental vehicles during the repair process). It is also resulting in more vehicles being written off due to the time and cost required for repair.

Preferred repair facilities

Stemming the tide of costly auto repairs THE COST of automobile repairs is increasing significantly. Cars today boast more safety features and more expensive parts, and are driving increases in claims costs. As a result, physical damage coverage is showing an industrywide deteriorating loss ratio trend. The cost of parts is also increasing as car manufacturers create more specialized proprietary safety features and integrated parts. While this integration makes manufacturing more efficient and cost-effective, it has the inverse impact on repair costs. “It’s no longer the case where a broken headlight means replacing a bulb,” says Henry


Hamm, personal insurance broker proposition director at RSA Canada. “These days, the entire headlight assembly requires replacement and, due to their specialized nature, requires replacement with original equipment manufacturer parts, which is driving repair costs up.” The same applies to bumpers and other safety features. Manufacturers also require calibration of technology to ensure all safety features are working properly after the repair process. Because of the proprietary nature of parts with embedded technology, there are fewer aftermarket parts available, which are generally cheaper than OEM parts. The lack

Managing repair costs is important to ensure we maintain reasonable rates for customers. One way to address the trend of increased repair costs is to leverage an insurer’s preferred repair facility network. For instance, by leveraging its network of preferred repair facilities to manage repair capacity, RSA can move a vehicle to a shop that has capacity, reducing the time to repair and, most importantly, getting the client back into their vehicle with the peace of mind that the vehicle repair is guaranteed and consistent with manufacturer repair guidelines. “This is especially important during extreme weather or catastrophic events, where localized repair facility capacity may be limited,” Hamm says. “The faster the customer can get back on the road, the more satisfied he or she will be.”

A trusted information source Brokers are customers’ first point of contact and most trusted advisors. Knowing that the time required to repair vehicles is taking longer, brokers need to ensure that their customers have adequate rental coverage in place. “Quoting data shows most brokers are quoting limits at $1,200 to $1,500,” Hamm says. “For newer, more expensive vehicles, these limits may not be sufficient based on the trends we are seeing. Because the cost of vehicle repairs and the length of rentals is increasing, vehicles are more likely than ever to be written off,” he adds. “Brokers should consider the 48-month waiver of depreciation, rather than the standard 24-month waiver, to ensure policyholders can get back into a new car in the event that the vehicle cannot be repaired.” To find out how you can ensure your customers are protected in the case of an auto claim, talk to your RSA sales manager or visit rsa-products/personal/auto-insurance.

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