Women's History Month and International Women's Day

Gallagher celebrated Women's History Month 2019 and International Women's Day across the globe. The official theme for International Women’s Day 2019 is “#BalanceforBetter: The future is exciting. Let's build a gender-balanced world. Everyone has a part to play - all the time, everywhere.”


We asked some of our women in leadership their opinions on women in the insurance industry and what advice they could share.

Theresa Kwan
Gallagher Benefit Services Vice President of Marketing

Q. How have your experiences at Gallagher helped you to face your future with confidence? 
A. Gallagher has given me the opportunity to define and shape my own future at every point in my career, which has grown along with the business. That’s a strong vote of confidence, and it inspires self-confidence. I’ve also been surrounded by incredible mentors and leaders that not only challenged me to do better, but also provided the foundation and support for me to achieve better. That hasn’t changed.


Q. What advice would you share? 
A. Do the right thing – for yourself and your family, your community, your team and your organization. Once you figure out that formula, you’ll have a more instinctive sense about how to balance competing needs and commitments, and move forward to achieve success. When you keep following a formula that works, you’ll continue to do better work.


Q. Finish this statement: “I wish more women would work at Gallagher because…” 
A. There’s a true purpose in what we do. I’m not sure that can be said about any other organization in our industry. I do know that at Gallagher, we help organizations grow and prosper. And, more importantly, by helping the individuals in these organizations achieve their professional and personal goals, we also help their families. Gallagher embodies that sense of community.

Christie Grant
Vice President, Account Management

Q. How have your experiences at Gallagher helped you to face your future with confidence?  
A. I have faced many challenges and experienced exciting wins over the last 11 years with Gallagher Bassett.  However, it is the people that helped me face the future with confidence.  Each person I have interacted with whether it was within GB or outside of GB, has had an impact on me in one way or another that drives my motivation and outlook for future opportunities.  


Q. What advice would you share with other women?  
A. Go with your gut. Solicit feedback often. It’s okay to make mistakes, but learn from them. 

  
Q. Finish this statement: “I wish more women would get into the industry because…
A. The growth opportunities and rewarding career paths are endless.

Bonnie Boone
Executive Vice President

Q. Why is it important to make sure we are balancing women and men’s perspectives in business? 
A. I think it’s a proven fact that Diversity of thought provides a greater insight to innovativeness, strategic thinking and authentic leadership, which should translate to success.


Q. If you could write a message to the next generation of women professionals, what would you say? 
A. I am a big believer in mentorship/ sponsorship, bring someone else along on your journey to success. “Girls compete against each other women support each other.”


Q. What advice would you share with other women to help them in business?  
A. I am new to the firm so I have to interject myself in projects and committees. You can’t be afraid to contribute and participate. I just volunteered to teach a class to our younger colleagues about the "hard market."

Leslie A. Lemenager
President, Gallagher Benefit Services International

Q. How have your experiences at Gallagher helped you to face your future with confidence?
A. To me, confidence comes from trying new things and seeing the impact your efforts have.  I’ve been able to create teams, client deliverables and professional development opportunities for colleagues that I take pride in and that give me confidence to continue on in my efforts.


Q. The official theme for International Women’s Day 2019 is “#BalanceforBetter: 
A.  There are two elements here: “balance” means that varying viewpoints have given credibility and the sum of the parts is greater than any individual part.  I believe in that philosophy irrespective of gender. “Better” implies that we’re constantly evolving and seeking to achieve more.  That is not a gender-specific issue either, but rather something shared by both genders.  


Q. Finish this statement: “I wish more women would get into the industry because….” 
A. it’s an industry that is stable, growing and has huge potential for women, particularly as leaders.


Alexandra Glickman
Senior Managing Director Real Estate and Hospitality Practice

Q. How have your experiences at Gallagher helped you to face your future with confidence?
A. Gallagher is a meritocracy and my 18 years here have allowed me to grow professionally and personally. Our colleagues are the best in the industry and it is clear that we are all on the same team.


Q. What advice would you share with other women to help them build their confidence?
A. Confidence is the intersection of hard work, talent and the willingness to take risks. Women frequently excel at the first two but fear the risk taking. Failure is not fun, but unless you’re talking about sky diving or rock climbing, it rarely kills you. My suggestion is take calculated risks and learn from the experience.


Q. If you could write a message to the next generation of women professionals, what would you say?
A. There’s a difference between wanting to be liked and wanting to be respected. If you want to always be liked, then buy a dog. Success is not linear and if the goal is being liked, then a person will be afraid on taking the necessary steps to grow. Respect is earned.

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