April 22, 2014 Leave a comment
Recent visits to the University of Texas and Texas State Technical College wrapped up a busy first season of college recruiting. I’ve packed everything away until this fall, when our recruiting efforts will continue. The overall result? New relationships, building our brand at universities and a pipeline of talent that will serve Texas Mutual for years to come. Now, we’ve set our sights on filling a new class of underwriter trainees that will start June 2.
Recruiting for a new class of underwriters made me curious about underwriting. I got a chance to find out more from underwriter and Baylor grad Scott Bonds in our Dallas office. So Scott, what does a day in your life look like?
I’d say for an underwriter in Texas, my day is pretty darn good.
6:15 a.m. – 6:50 a.m. Wake up, shower, grab a quick glass of orange juice and head to a local networking meeting.
7 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. Network with a group of business people from all industries (Baylor Business Network of Dallas) and listen to an interesting presentation given by a Baylor Alum. I talk with a few alumni and meet a few who are agents in Dallas. They know about Texas Mutual, and I tell them the latest news on our success and which industries I see growing in my book of business. They like the update and talk about the upcoming football season.
8:30 a.m. – 9 a.m. Travel into work and fight traffic. I dream about the day road construction will be finished and anticipate how much better the drive will be.
9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Pull up my email and queue to see what the day has in store. I have two voicemails from agents. The first is a question on how to classify a risk. The second wants to discuss pricing on a new business account we quoted last week. His presentation to the client is Friday, so he needs a quick response.
I return the phone calls and respond to a few emails. The agent who wanted to discuss the submission thinks his account deserves better pricing. I ask about the safety procedures the account has in place and what the insured has done to prevent a few larger losses from happening again. He says he will find out and get back to me later in the day.
I process a few endorsements and review renewal accounts. I’m able to release them fairly quickly. Now it’s time to head to lunch.
11 a.m. – noon Grab lunch with a co-worker down the street at a local Italian restaurant. We talk about a few of the accounts we are working on and how the Dallas sports teams are doing.
Noon – 2:30 p.m. I get back to my desk. I have a voicemail from the agent who needs additional pricing. He has the answers I need. I review how the losses will develop in our pricing tool and document why I’m able to reduce the pricing. He is excited and thinks we will get the business.
I review a more complex account and discuss some of the exposures with my supervisor. We agree that we need a slight increase due to the losses being higher than expected.
I send a few emails, process three more endorsements and pack up for my agency visit later at 3 p.m.
2:30 p.m. – 3 p.m. Our marketing representative and I drive over to meet with one of my agents. Their office is actually near my house, so I take my own car to head home afterward.
3 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. Our marketing representative and I meet with the agency owners to discuss accounts and check their outlook for the year. The agency projects they will grow approximately 10 percent with us in the coming year.
We finish up our meeting around 3:45 p.m., and I walk around the office talking with some of the account managers and producers. I visit with an account manager and learn about her commute. Then, I speak with a few producers who are Baylor alumni about my meeting that morning and talk football. The owner of the agency drops by and gives us a hard time about it, as he went to a different school. We discuss a few more accounts the agency is targeting that may be a good fit for Texas Mutual. I make a few notes in my notebook and tell the producer I will be on the lookout for them when they hit my desk. I shake a few more hands as I’m walking out and head home.
4:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. I make the short(er) drive home.
As Scott describes his “typical Tuesday,” I notice he is clearly well-versed in analysis, teamwork, negotiating, customer service and relationship building. And football, lots of football.
Join me next time, when I go “On the Road” with Austin regional office senior underwriter Nathan Rudolph and update progress on our underwriting class.