This week, members of our team attended HubWeek 2019 Fall Festival. HubWeek was founded in 2014 by the Boston Globe, Harvard University, Massachusetts General, and MIT on the “simple belief in the power of the people of Boston to build a better future.”
In their 5 years, HubWeek has played host to speakers ranging from Senator John Kerry, entrepreneur and social activist Scott Harrison, to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd.
This year’s theme is “The Pursuit: of change, of inspiration, of connection, and of the unknown” through disrupting an industry. So what are we pursuing as an agency and as an insurance industry?
Insurance itself is an industry that is being disrupted by emerging technologies and an increasingly interconnected world. That’s why we are pursuing a better online presence to connect with our clients through increased accessibility and by communicating who we are.
“Building Disruptive Brands” speaker Ali Weiss of the beauty company Glossier shared her thoughts on leveraging social media to share their company’s narrative. Glossier believes the consumer wants ownership of their beauty routine because they are experts in their own right. This is counter to the traditional marketing approach in the cosmetics industry, which presents the buyer as having a flaw that makeup can hide, or that the consumer is seeking professional help because they do not know any better.
Weiss added that Glossier knows “you are the curator of your own routine, and we are the backbone of your routine.” As an agent, we believe that the client should curate their own insurance buying process, and the knowledge and options we provide are the backbone of that process. In the same way Glossier offers their makeup in 12 different skin tones, we offer insurance products from many different carriers to find your perfect match.
By acknowledging the influence of technology on our industry, we are pursuing the unknown. Technology is advancing at an exponential rate. Even if we could predict where tech is going, that prediction may only be relevant for a moment before something better comes along.
One of the featured keynotes, Mike Mahoney of Boston Scientific, spoke on “Succeeding with Integrity.” Here, Mahoney credited the company’s success to their diverse workforce. He said, “More diversity in a company means better matching your customer base.” Mahoney went on to explain how this led to Boston Scientific’s “Close the Gap” initiative to ensure 40% of their management positions are consistently held by women.
At FBinsure, women hold about 60% of the leadership positions. It’s easy to lose sight of the significance since they are all in these positions due to their intellect and hard work. Their roles in the agency are not related to gender or checking a box.
“Breaking Barriers: Women at Work” speaker Bozoma Saint John, having held management positions at Apple, Uber, Beats, Pepsi, and now Endeavor summed this up in her talk. When she was asked how she overcomes the feeling of filling a quota she said, “I make it well known that I am here because I am the best and then I go out and be the best. I’m not trying to be the best because I am trying to prove something; I’m trying to be the best because I know I am.”
If we are going to continue pursuing industry disruption, it’s good to know we’ve hit just the right balance to do so.