It's not all farming, I focus on commercial business
Meet Sian Williams
After working in senior roles for a number of large insurance companies and brokers, being an Agent is a breath of fresh air – no more revolving managers, job insecurity or feeling I wasn’t achieving my full potential.
Yes, I had to accept an initial drop in income but due to growth of the business, earnings are generally on a par now and I have the freedom of running my own business. It's not all farming, either – I focus on commercial business. Friends joke that I do business in wellies, but sadly I haven’t had to wear a pair of wellies for work!
Introducing my agency
Essex South, Chelmsford
I work with one other Partner and we have nine staff, covering an area of Essex that borders London with 2,700 customers in a variety of sectors. My Partner has a farming background and mostly looks after that side. While I do look after some farming clients, I mainly focus on the 52% of our business that’s non-farming.
This means I deal with SMEs and mid-corporates and I have the scope to write their entire portfolios. We’re in a unique position, with a great customer proposition, so there’s really no reason why we can’t grow significantly every year.
My career life story
I worked for a number of national brokers and then held senior leadership positions within two insurance companies before I became an Agent of NFU Mutual, which gave me a lot of useful skills and experiences that I’m now using.
Agent of NFU Mutual, Essex South
Focusing on commercial business and growing the agency by providing leadership and vision to the team, together with personal service to our larger commercial clients and prospects.
Regional Development Director
Managed regional sale and distribution performance and developed a strategy to drive growth.
HSB Engineering Insurance
Led underwriting and business development teams covering both UK and international insurance portfolios.
Senior Management Roles
Various broking firms
Worked for a number of national brokers in various senior management roles.
A little Q&A
Being an Agent for NFU Mutual can be challenging and varied, but ultimately extremely rewarding. As a self-employed Agent, I’m responsible for leading, developing and growing my business. Here, I’ve tried to answer some of the questions you might have if you’re thinking of becoming an Agent with NFU Mutual.
What skills or behaviours do you think make a good Agent?
What do you enjoy about running your own business?
I really enjoy the freedom of running the business, but within supportive parameters and working alongside my fellow Agent and Business Partner, Frank. We have different skills and experience, so it makes for a great partnership and we both have the same growth ambitions, both personally and for the business.
How does being a self-employed Agent differ from being employed?
I feel far more in control than I did as an employee. I loved working within the wider insurance industry, but I felt my future was uncertain. Working with NFU Mutual, I have confidence in the future potential for growth of my business. Working within the Agency Network model means that you have more engagement with the local business community. You look after clients big and small, who know each other and offer them tailored service propositions. And you are not guided by “fee structures”.
How do NFU Mutual support you and your agency?
The most supportive aspect for me was having an existing book of business that I could grow. In addition, NFU Mutual also provides access to an IT package, compliance framework and proactively helps us as we manage and mitigate regulatory risk and support growth. There is also a broking arm, which we can access should NFU Mutual not be in a position to write part of a client’s portfolio. We’ve really utilised this in order to help us protect customer’s whole portfolio of risks.
Why should someone consider becoming an Agent?
Describe being an Agent in three words
Fulfilling. Proud. Positive.