This Week We're Celebrating:
Claims Professionals Appreciation Week
January 28, 2013 - February 1, 2013
What's that you say? Didn't know such a holiday existed?
Don't feel too bad. According to Google (and every other source I could think to consult), it doesn't.
That's why I'm inventing it. Right now. Today.
Full Disclosure: I'm from a family of insurance professionals. Add up the claims service of my dad, brother, wife, step-daughter, a couple family godparents and myself, we have dedicated more than 150 years to the insurance industry.
Even if Hallmark never designs a new card to honor the occasion and I'm the only one who ever celebrates it, I plan to set aside this week for the remainder of my career to pay homage to the fine men and women who toil in the claims departments of America each and every day of the year.
And I'm making it a week because it deserves to be more than a measly day given all they have to deal with throughout the year. I know. I've been there.
Why do this? A couple of reasons:
They Make The World Go 'Round
Take a moment to think about all the people, in addition to those for whom insurance coverage is provided, whose lives are enriched because of the work claims representatives perform:
- Contractors who repair physical damage,
- Doctors who treat those with physical injuries,
- Attorneys who represent clients involved in the settlement process,
- Shareholders, Mediators, Car Dealers, Manufacturers,
- Consultants, and Vendors of every stripe imaginable.
It's impossible to quantify exactly how much economic activity is generated simply because claims professionals do their job. Suffice it to say that it's probably . . . "a lot!"
The Job Requires Skill In Multiple Disciplines
A claims professional is the quintessential "Jack of All Trades." At various times, they wear multiple hats which can make it hard to differentiate them from numerous other professionals such as:
Banker - Counselor - Pastor - Lawyer - Appraiser - Mathematician - Researcher
Investigator - Mediator - Politician - Time Management Specialist - Physicist
Philosopher - Educator - Statistician - Communications Expert - Interpreter - Etc.
Claims departments frequently draw from a talent pool which contains people from a wide variety of interests and college majors which results in a broad background of experience.
In fact, many smart plaintiff law firms and other businesses often hire ex-claims professionals because they value their skills and training so highly.
It's a Noble Profession That Helps People
Claims professionals serve as the conduit between a suffered loss and recovery.
Unfortunately, money is the only medium available that can help restore an individual to their pre-accident condition following a covered loss. And quantifying intangible damages is an impossible task at best. Consider:
- What value can you really ever put on the life of a child who's been killed?
- How can money replace the memories of a home destroyed by fire?
These are among the many challenges claims professionals confront each and every day. And they do so in spite of the fact that they often garner about as much as respect as an offensive right guard on a football team for their efforts.
Theirs is NOT an easy job by any stretch of the imagination.
But ask any person who's ever been aided by a Catastrophe Duty Claims Professional how appreciative they were when the insurance representative showed up, check in hand, to help appraise and pay for their loss.
Ask anyone's who has ever accepted a structured settlement when settling a physical injury claim how glad they were to receive guaranteed future income that is 100% income tax-free.
There are countless other examples of appreciation people feel each and every day for claims service even if it's very rarely expressed as often as it should be.
So here's to you, Claims Professionals. This week we pause to salute you by saying simply
for doing what you do. We hope you are as proud of your contribution to society as we are of the the service you provide that helps so many.