Meet Mike Warner, Vice President, Small Business Underwriting Leader
What is your backstory? Tell us about your path to Sompo International.
Like most people I sort of fell into insurance. I was a math major in college and worked part time at Coregis Insurance company – I worked in the file room and got curious reading through the insurance policy files. I was intrigued by the insurance language and terms and saw it as a huge puzzle which I was eager to solve. After graduation I worked at an independent insurance agency called Corieri & Associates. Two years later I was hired by Chubb as a Commercial Underwriting Trainee. I subsequently moved to Travelers and spent thirteen years in various underwriting and sales leadership roles prior to joining Sompo International; in September 2020.
Give us three words to describe Sompo International.
Entrepreneurial, Inclusive, Diverse.
What is a trend you feel is impacting the industry and more specifically, your role at the moment?
Flexible working hours. More employees are looking for a better work life balance. When I started in the industry back in 2001 it was normal and expected to work at least 40 hours per week in the office. I believe that the Covid-19 pandemic has caused many of us to pause and reconsider our priorities. In addition, employers have experienced an increase in productivity during the pandemic when their employees were working remotely. These two dynamics has prompted many employers including carriers, brokers, and independent agencies to adapt and embrace a hybrid work model.
What advice do you have for prospective Sompo International candidates?
I believe it’s equally important to interview the employer as the employer interviews you. It’s critical that the goals and vision of the organization aligns with yours. If you are looking for an organization that’s dynamic, goal driven, fast paced and you are entrepreneurial you will excel here. It’s a culture where everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed regardless of age, ethnicity, or gender.
Think back to your college graduation day. What is one thing you would tell yourself then?
I would tell myself two things: Take more risks. Taking risks helps you find out what you are good at and enjoy doing; and connect with as many people as you can especially those who are different from you. This helps to expand your knowledge and broaden your perspective. Building a diverse network is also advantageous as you navigate your career.
What would you do for a career if you weren’t doing this?
I would have probably been a motivational speaker. My personal mission statement is to inspire others to uncover their true purpose and live it fully.
Tell us something about yourself that would surprise us.
I ran track while in high school. I was the 200 meter and 400 meter champion for my high school in Georgetown Guyana, South America.