What can multiculturalism teach us about leadership?

For Elissa Doroff (pictured), head of claims for the Americas at Mosaic Insurance, this age diversity is something to celebrate. “I think insurance has always been viewed as boring, boring and limiting as a profession,” he said.

“Over the last 10 to 12 years, colleges have been offering insurance management and risk management as a career, and it’s made a big difference. There are a lot of young people who see insurance as a good and fun career.”

Doroff reflected on what his generation learned by looking at insurance, in front of a panel of multigenerational workers at Women in Insurance event in New York.

“If you talk to anyone in my generation, most of us would say that we fell into insurance. I didn’t want to start my career. I went to law school, then I did taxes and real estate, and I found that it didn’t fulfill me at all,” said Doroff.

“I started looking at other industries and opportunities, thinking about where I could use my law degree. I got an opportunity at AIG almost 17 years ago, and it turned out to be one of the most exciting positions I’ve ever held.

Doroff said he has “seen all aspects of insurance” from reimbursement to working on claims and underwriting. His experience has shown him an abundance of opportunities in the insurance industry, as well as an abundance of talent among professionals of all ages.

“For my generation, the work style is just to get it done. You find solutions and get creative. There was no technological advancement like we’ve seen in the last decade,” he told Insurance Business.

“The coming of companies that provide solutions in the integration and creation of models, there are many things today that help build our reputation and educate us better. Young people who work in the field of insurance technology will help create solutions,” he added.

Technology has also helped change learning styles among age groups, Doroff noted. “For me and perhaps those who are more advanced in their careers, our way of learning is different. I tend to be more individualistic and proactive. [learning]. When we have training sessions, it helps me to learn by observing and working with people.

“A lot of [the people in] Younger generations, to their advantage, are more savvy and can find answers online. They are able to perceive things and learn quickly and effectively, especially when it comes to technology,” Doroff said.

It’s easy to talk about generational differences, but a multi-age group can also prove a lot of talent and strength, if the leaders manage it well. It all boils down to one key skill, Doroff said: “Communication is key, no matter how big or small, large or diverse your team is: it’s important to communicate, set expectations, celebrate success, and show the road to success.”

He also emphasized the importance of mentoring a new generation of insurance professionals. But instead of giving them answers, Doroff said those who know better should let young people be themselves.

“It is important to encourage young children to think, to help them find ways to think about the problem and prepare them to give their answers. This helps them become leaders themselves,” he concluded.

Elissa and other top insurance leaders will be addressing the multigenerational workforce and other issues at the Women in Insurance Summit in New York, on September 7 at the Westin New York Times Square. The annual conference dedicated to helping women is back after the end of the pandemic, full of powerful sessions to help insurance professionals deal with today’s challenges.

For more information on the conference and how to register, visit newyork.ibwomenininsurance.com.