How Jacob Duckworth from Anthony James accelerated his career from Account Executive to MD
Why did you get into insurance?
Like most, I fell into the profession. A family friend worked for one of the nationals and suggested I speak to someone in the business about a job. I started as a Project Manager and worked my way up, before moving to Anthony James (Insurance Broker), to take on a new challenge.
What did you enjoy most about being an Account Executive?
The autonomy to get on and service a book of clients, whilst working within a supported framework that allowed for collaboration when needed. I enjoyed working as part of a wider team of Account Executives who were driven to go above and beyond for their clients. It was great building friendships with clients that went beyond just doing their insurance (years down the line, I’m still friends with many of my clients!).
What platform did AJIB give you to accelerate your career?
Having moved from a national to a regional independent broker, the growth opportunities were, and still are endless. The business recognises people who go above and beyond, creating opportunities internally for people to progress and succeed. Steve’s interest and day-to-day involvement in the business has been a fantastic example for me. As a personal mentor, he’s helped me learn and develop throughout my time at Anthony James. This philosophy hasn’t changed and is very much part of the business’ DNA.
Why is AJIB a great place to work?
Obviously, I am biased, but the business is genuinely a great place to work. The team spirit and togetherness are unlike anything I’ve previously experienced. The funky office, and perks like a coffee machine, pool table, social events, and the client hospitality we do, all help to make it a fantastic place. You really have to come to the office to see what I’m talking about.
Two pieces of advice you would give to an Account Executive starting out?
Over-service your clients. It sounds simple, but so many people fall into a habit of doing the bare minimum. Do what you say you are going to, when you say you are going to do it. Have regular touch points throughout the year to check in and build rapport. If you do the basics well, you will instantly stand out from your peers! Do your exams and build your technical capabilities. In a marketplace where commoditisation has driven down premiums and technical experience has been lost, understanding the technicalities of cover and building your knowledge can really set you apart from the competition. That was four, but they’re all essentials to me!
What would you have been if you weren’t in insurance?
An F1 driver, without a doubt. I’m a total petrolhead, so racing against Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton sounds like my kind of thing. The thought of getting paid to do your ultimate passion sounds amazing! More realistically, I would have probably ended up in hospitality running hotels.
Are you looking for your next career opportunity or want to hire top talent? Contact Colin McKenna, Client Solutions Director on:
07384 548 579
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