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Perspective

Innovate or Bust - Why We Need To Reimagine Insurance

October 30, 2014| By Drew King | L/H General Industry | English

Region: U.S.

Recently we held an event for senior executives from across the life and health industry called the Gen Re Summit. This was an invitation-only opportunity for insurance leaders to hear from a cross-section of experts on hot topics including innovation, consumer acquisition, and strategic agility, all under the theme of Think Differently. Much of what we heard was fresh and different, and some was downright shocking given the potential disruptors coming from outside our industry.

During an interactive discussion we held between a few of the speakers and the audience, we talked about ways insurance industry players can rethink their offerings, and even their entire business models. We walked away with a plethora of insights on why we need to focus time and resources on staying relevant and sustainably profitable during these interesting times. 

It’s Time To Reimagine Our Products

Sometimes it takes catharsis to produce a different mindset, as Kathy Pearson of Enterprise Learning Solutions explained. Kathy told the story of Bell Labs and how it was challenged to imagine starting over after its facilities caught fire and everything was lost. Ideas such as the wireless phone, caller ID and others were born when they were allowed to think “silly thoughts” about what they would invent.

Doug Stephens, Retail Prophet, confounded our expectations about the future buying experience by saying that the Internet is not what’s changed everything, before adding that the mobile phone is what is actually disrupting the retail industry, and changing the way people research and make purchases.

It’s Time To Rethink Our Business

Why the urgency to think differently about our business? Insurers urgently need to rethink the way we do business, Stephens believes, before the next disrupter does it for them. He explained that the barriers to entry have dropped significantly thanks to crowd funding operations like Kickstarter. The industry is just one “college dropout away” from being out-innovated - and the insurance landscape could be altered for good.

It’s Time To Innovate 

The world has changed significantly, and our industry needs to respond. James Taylor, Decision Analytics, offered ideas as it relates to big data and decision analytics. Making better decisions and improving outcomes is one way we can be more strategic and capitalize on the vast amount of data we have at our fingertips. Thinking “If I only knew…” is the impetus to finding new solutions - and focusing on our decisions first versus what data we need is what can bring about change.

So what better time than now to start reimagining? We’ll be covering additional Summit topics to fire your imagination in future blogs.

 

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