We became aware of Insurance Nerds after we reviewed their book Insuring Tomorrow: Engaging Millennials in the Insurance Industry. We previously conducted email interviews with founders Tony and Carly, so it was a great opportunity to do this video interview with Carly Burnham. Here is a brief summary of our conversation, please give a watch and/or listen and then check out their valuable efforts at InsNerds.com.
Insurance Nerds was born in 2014. Carly Burnham and Tony Canas met each other working for the same large insurance carrier and continued to work with each other for four years. Tony had previously worked in a claims call center and had moved into underwriting. Carly had a background working in a local insurance agency doing front line customer service. That experience exposed her to a broad range of insurance products and learning how to work directly with clients.
When Carly moved into the call center, where she met Tony, her experience was the opposite of working at a local agent’s office. As she describes, “Selling a product that is very complex, that has a lot of nuances, and you’re talking to people in 26 states to try to connect and make a sale.” Carly and Tony were working with a young professionals resource group coordinating education and networking opportunities within the company. They started blogging on InsNerds to discuss those topics of professional development and maintained that effort even after they both left the large carrier where they met.
Insurance Nerds plays an important role in continuing that shared vision of helping young professionals develop career pathways through education and networking. The concepts that became the book, Insuring Tomorrow, had been in discussions for about 3 years when Tony’s partner made the final push to encourage them to write the book. Carly and Tony brought in a copy editor who assisted with the structural plan. For marketing Tony sent out 50 free copies to people whom they felt would be interested and could help create feedback to fuel interest in the product.
As Carly notes, the talent crisis is an ongoing issue within the insurance industry, as well as throughout all organizations. Understanding generational and cultural differences is key to success with recruiting and retaining talent. Insuring Tomorrow and the InsNerds website continue to grow as resources speaking into these areas of need. Nick Lamporeli joined the effort bringing a podcast, Profiles in Risk, which expanded the offerings as well as the audience. Early episodes were discussions between Nick, Carly and Tony but the podcast has grown to include interviews with innovators in many facets of the insurance industry.
Insurance Nerds has gathered a broad range of voices speaking to young professionals as well as a thriving network of young professionals networking with each other through their Slack community. Their bookshelf now includes titles they have published including The End of Insurance As We Know It, When Worlds Collide as well as several new titles they will release in 2020. As a positive sign of their growth in the last five years, Carly Burnham has now become the CEO and first official full time employee. If you are in the insurance industry, you will find the resources available through Insurance Nerds to be invaluable to your efforts for career development.
Thoughts on personal and professional development.
Jon Isaacson, The Intentional Restorer, is a contractor, author, and host of The DYOJO Podcast. The goal of The DYOJO is to help growth-minded restoration professionals shorten their DANG learning curve for personal and professional development. You can watch The DYOJO Podcast on YouTube on Thursdays or listen on your favorite podcast platform.