Message from the Chair

"A promise... and a piece of paper."

This, as I recall it, was one of the first descriptions of the business I had ‘fallen’ into several decades ago, as a newly hired trainee at an insurance company that no longer exists. Now, as I accept the honour of becoming the National Chair of your Society, I think back on this brief explanation of what the property & casualty industry was all about. It still fits. Sort of.

If you read my introduction in the fall edition of ADVANTAGE Quarterly, by past chair Julie Pingree, you’ll have seen several important milestones in my career to date. I moved around, took on progressively higher level positions, and in various roles. Not surprisingly, like many of you who’ve enjoyed working in our industry for a number of years, there’s been both planned for and surprising turns in the roles, opportunities, and path I have taken. The core tenets of our business, though, have not changed no matter where I was or what specific role I held over all these years. We are here to help people – the premiums of the many pay for the losses of the few. The abilities to address and assess the risks people and businesses face, that can be mitigated or transferred, continue to hold fast.

That is the other ‘first day on the job’ concept that I clearly remember being told: that insurance is a people business. Cliché, yes, but true nevertheless. Yes, technology has come a long way, since my first days working in insurance (who even has a pencil anymore?) and the “piece of paper” we’ve historically relied on to confirm our protection to our customers is quickly fading into the digital universe. But the promise we insurance professionals make to our customers to indemnify and make whole has continued to hold true as our value to society at large.

But I would be remiss to not acknowledge that the industry is changing, and quickly! Our evolving world is pushing the boundaries of our historical position – insurance is a complicated product, needing well informed and caring professionals to explain, decide upon, sell, and then deliver upon the claims promises.

The CIP Society is here to further your professionalism, offer information and insight designed to prepare you for the changes ahead, and provide you with connectedness to others in the p&c insurance business. That is what I hope your membership in our Chartered Insurance Professionals’ Society brings to you. Whether your personal path in our industry is very early on, or many years along, your attainment of your CIP designation denotes a professional commitment to a career in our industry. How far will you take your commitment and professionalism? Your knowledge and capacity to provide value, in whatever role or point you are at now in your career, cannot remain status quo.

The CIP Society National Council is committed to ensuring that the programs and services offered to you, our graduate community, set you up for success in this ever-evolving industry. We believe that you need information, insight and perspective to keep abreast of new products like cyber coverage, new technologies like the Internet of Things, new risks like terrorism, and more. That is why we provide annual Emerging Issues Research Reports, monthly trends papers, daily industry news, an annual series of engaging webinars on hot topics, and more. To enable continuous learning, we offer the Rhind Scholarships; to provide aspiration and recognition, we honour leadership in the industry; and even, to help you save money (perhaps even recouping your membership dollars), we have the MemberPerks program

As your new Chair of the CIP Society, I look forward to helping bring the benefits of our Society to you and encourage you all to do so for yourself and other colleagues in our vitally important industry.

Michael Kosturik, BA, FCIP

Chair, National CIP Society