Isenberg to Insurance

June 6, 2012

Last Working Wednesday, we heard from one of our employees, Andy Roth. This week, we have a guest blogger, Jim Hyatt. He is the Vice President of Personal Lines for Arbella Insurance Group. Jim answered a few questions on what brought him to insurance and why it's an important industry.

Jim Hyatt, Arbella Insurance Group

Q: How did you come to be involved in the insurance industry?

A: As a finance major at the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst, I was immediately drawn to the insurance job opportunities that were available at the time. In 1985, I accepted a personal lines underwriting trainee position at the ChubbGroup of Insurance Companies. That experience provided me with a solid foundation for a career in the insurance industry. In fact, Arbella Personal Lines has developed its own Underwriting Trainee Program, which is modeled after the trainee program I went through and other successful programs I have been associated with over the years. Through a combination of classroom study, mentoring, and on-the-job training, our trainees are gaining the knowledge and expertise that will guarantee their success in the industry. The program includes not only underwriting and business analysis experience, but also experiences in customer service, actuarial, and claims, that provide our trainees with a well-rounded understanding of this business. I’m very happy to provide these employees with the same learning opportunities that I was given at the start of my own insurance career.

Q: What has kept you so engaged in this business?

A: One important aspect of the insurance industry that has kept me interested is the fact that it isn’t beholden to the economy. Some of my friends who are in consulting and investment banking have seen their entire careers bend to the whims of an unruly market. The insurance industry, on the other hand, has the power to withstand all economic cycles—it’s rock solid.

Q: What makes insurance such an important industry?

A: Those of us who are in the insurance industry are in a unique position to help others. We’re not selling a product; we’re selling a promise. We are selling our insureds the peace of mind that if something should happen, we will be there to help rebuild what’s been lost and help put their lives back together. Arbella’s ability to create mutual trust and loyalty with our customers is what I think differentiates us from other carriers. One year ago, many of our insureds in Western Massachusetts had their lives turned upside down after the devastating tornadoes that struck without warning. When Arbella arrived to help our insureds, we could provide one comfort: the reassurance that they were more than just a number, and that their policies were a promise that we would make good on. That quality, I believe, is not only important; it’s the mark of an exceptional insurance carrier.
Thank you for being a guest on our Working Wednesday blog Jim. It is great to have input from someone who started in the insurance industry out of college. Thank you to Jim Hyatt, John Donohue and Arbella for allowing us to host their Distractology Driving Simulator at our agency this week. Join us next week for another Working Wednesday blog post.