When you think of insurance, your first thought may be about your vehicle or your home, but the industry is much broader than you think. It touches nearly everything we do in life and business – where we work or go to school, what we eat or drink, when we buy things online or in a store, or how we travel… all requires insurance. And there’s so much more!
When it comes to your career, you might be surprised to learn that no matter what your skills and interests are, there is a place for you in insurance. There are opportunities for career growth and to contribute in a meaningful way in nearly every corner of the industry. Don’t just take our word for it! According to the Insurance Institute of Canada’s most recent Demographic Research report, 97% of industry professionals feel they contribute to their company’s success, and 94% are proud to work in the industry!
We recently sat down with insurance industry professional Cindy Yott, who works as a Human Resources Training Professional with Crawford and Company (Canada). She shared with us about how she started her insurance journey, why she has stayed, how she evolved over the last 15 years working in the industry and her advice about how you can get your start in insurance!
The Starting Point
For many insurance professionals, the industry is not where they began their career journey. This rings true for Cindy. Before hatching her insurance career, she worked as a Social Worker for Women’s Shelter Home, but it wasn’t quite the right fit for her.
“My friends told me that I would enjoy a career in insurance and that I should give it a try,” she tells us. “I’m glad I did, because I’ve never looked back”.
The Career Journey
Cindy has worn many hats over the last 15 years – a true testament to the career mobility that the industry offers. She started off as an insurance agent, moved to personal lines underwriting, moved again to commercial underwriting, and then on to corporate finance.
Today, Cindy is leveraging all of the expertise she has garnered over the course of her career in her work as a Human Resources Training Specialist. “I’m responsible for creating and delivering all of the corporate training initiatives, people development programs, and support that Crawford provides across Canada,” Cindy explains.
She works with her company’s internal staff teams and external business clients. “It keeps me engaged and busy, and meeting so many new people is an added bonus,” she says.
But Cindy doesn’t stop there!
“For the Insurance Institute, I am an instructor teaching Chartered Insurance Professional (CIP) courses, and also advocate for others to join our industry as a Career Connections Ambassador” she says. She also goes above and beyond by working closely with Wilfrid Laurier’s Lazaridis School of Business as a professional advisor for one of their student clubs – Laurier Insurance Risk Association (LIRA).
Cindy is glad that she took her friend’s suggestion and has truly found her place in the insurance industry. “I’ve stayed for over 15 years, and that is not by accident” she tells us. “I love that I get to work with people from very diverse backgrounds and business experiences. Whoever says that insurance is boring does not truly understand our industry”.
According to Cindy, she is challenged daily to be her best self, and continue to take opportunities for personal and professional development.
“Insurance is about what we can do for our community and people – being impactful and adding value. I feel lucky to be a part of that, so what’s not to love about what I do?”
Advice And Insights
When we asked Cindy what advice she would give to those looking to get connected to a career in insurance, she offered these nuggets:
For her, she places a great importance on staying connected and engaged with the industry because you never know what will result from the network you have cultivated. “Everyone you meet has an interesting story, so keep an open mind and surround yourself with people who positively challenge you,” she says.
And, the learning never ends! She urges those interested to get involved in the industry and make and impact! She also recommends, once connected to the industry take CIP in a classroom setting if possible so you can learn from and build relationships with other individuals in the industry.