professional relationship building
Property Casualty

Relationships Still Matter

Rod Miner
Rod Miner
Vice President of Commercial Claims, Property Casualty

Skype, analytics, “Is there an App for that?”, and live streaming video — these are just some of the tools we use, read, and hear about today in our industry and elsewhere. While many of these are powerful and crucial tools, it’s important to remember how vital relationships are to all of us…both professionally and personally.

I’ll begin with the personal aspect. Ever have a day where you are emailing, texting, or instant messaging someone then later actually see them yet never mention the ongoing electronic interaction? Or, how about this…how many days have you interacted with clients, partners, and co-workers all day long, yet it’s all business related and no true connection is made? Don’t mistake this as I am advocating for multiple, hour-long personal phone calls or gossip stops around the office each day. However, it is crucial for all of us to maintain and strengthen our personal relationships.

Professionally, relationships matter as well. A recent catastrophic loss event for a long-standing client brought this to light for me. Without naming any sort of name, I’ll try and explain the event.

  • Within moments of the event occurring, the relationship one of our Waukee employees has with a family member helped bring the loss event to our attention.
  • Shortly thereafter, the multiple relationships many on our team had with multiple people with our client helped us quickly assess the scope of the situation.
  • Within 30 minutes of the event occurring, various relationships our team members had with the impacted carrier were used. I should note that it was already after hours. We couldn’t wait for first thing the next morning. Contacting a non-descript, call center was not going to suffice. Contacting someone we had relationships with, who was vested not only in the client and Holmes Murphy but also with us personally, made the difference. A large loss adjuster was in contact and in route to the client’s location from out of state yet that night.
  • That evening, communication between three or more of us from the team with 2-3 client relationships took place. Peace of mind.
  • The next day, familiar relationships from a few years back no longer directly involved between Holmes Murphy and the client were re-engaged. New relationships began to be forged as we visited and worked with the client team and our carrier partner. Strategic alignment and common, personal interests helped build rapport.
  • As we concluded with some words of advice for the client’s executive committee and leaders late that day before we left, our client team thanked us for the responsiveness, input, and empathy. The carrier’s adjuster thanked us for supporting their initial efforts. Relationships were utilized, built, and strengthened.

Now, I’m not going to try and kid you. We have a long way to go with this specific loss event. There will be disagreements, frustrations, and anxiety. However, the strength of the existing relationships as well as the building of new ones will serve very useful as we strive for a best-in-class resolution.

Let me end by saying this…there truly isn’t any app for that!

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