While the insurance industry offers a diverse array of career options, women working in the industry say they’re still fighting challenges that affect their professional development.
In the Women in Insurance Leadership Insight Report, a new research study released by the Insurance Networking News and the Association for Professional Insurance Women (APIW), women in the industry were asked about opportunity for the insurance industry’s female executive corps.
Targeting senior-level women in the field, INN and APIW analyzed responses on issues ranging from specific business challenges to networking, mentorship, workplace diversity, professional development opportunities, and the top leadership tenets required for professional growth. The analysis draws on 180 qualified respondents, of which 89 percent were women with more than 20 years of experience in large insurance firms, primarily focused on property and casualty insurance.
Key findings of the Women in Insurance Leadership Insight Report include the following:
- A full 41% of respondents report that 5% or less of senior leadership roles in their organizations are filled by women.
- Little preparation is provided by these organizations for women to advance: Only 7% of respondents said their firms offered such programs specifically for women, while 54% report having non-gender specific professional development programs.
- Although relationship-building and networking ranked high among respondents’ interests, its application in practice is mixed. Only 9% of respondents report having been mentored within the last 12 months, while close to half report mentoring others, and 42% report not being in any mentoring relationship.
“This data offers a new window on women’s professional development in an industry primarily comprised of men,” says Pat Speer,INN’s editor in chief and chair of the Women in Insurance Leadership Forum. “The groundbreaking perspective it delivers on the constraints women face in advancing will help organizations make informed choices about corporate-led initiatives for women in the future.”
For a copy of the Women in Insurance Leadership Insight Report, click here.
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