Meet Matt | Careers | Zurich Insurance in the UK

Meet Matt

Matt Austwick    

Role: Senior Sales Executive

Business area: Sales

Find out more about Matt by clicking on the questions below.

When did you join Zurich?

I joined Zurich in December 2003 from Walkers Crisps where I worked as a route sales rep.

Can you describe your first role?

My first role was as a personal lines sales coordinator, supporting two field based account executives in the Midlands region of the UK. I provided assistance and accountability towards delivery of the account executive's objectives and GWP targets.

What roles did you take on afterwards and why?

I was a sales coordinator for three years before I was re-deployed as a key account sales coordinator across Personal Lines and Commercial Lines. I was then supporting up to six key account managers at any one time and the larger more complex commercial national broker accounts. This was all completely new for me.

What has been your most significant or challenging career move and why?

Making the move from key account sales coordinator to development executive in Sutton was my most significant career move to date. It's fair to say that my knowledge of Commercial Lines was, at best, limited. I was keen to learn, develop and test myself in the commercial insurance world. This was a big challenge and presented a steep learning curve for me, balancing the requirements for learning and doing the job to a good quality.

What development support have you received?

The stand out development I have received was via the 2011 Sales Talent Programme (STP). The STP was geared around a business programme – a whistle stop tour of different parts of the business from Sales Operations, Commercial Direct to looking at Strategy and Implementation, Western Europe and Global Brokers, Networking and Career success, communication, Personal Presence and Impact and business projects

What are the key skills required in your current role?

For my current role as senior sales executive there are a number of key skills that are fundamental to the success of the role. Getting the people management side of the job right is crucial to the success of the role. I will need to concentrate on my teams' Individual Development Plans, one-to-ones, joint visits, AIDA coaching, mentoring, learning and development requirements and opportunities.

What advice would you give to people starting a career in Zurich?

Be ambitious and be bold. Attitude is everything. Have the correct approach and attitude to your work/life to get the best results possible.

What do you see as your next step?

I see my next career move into sales management. My current role will give me the people management experience I need and help bridge any skill gaps to enable me to make the jump from managing people in associate sales to strategic sales. I have the experience of working as an account executive in strategic sales and understand the requirements and the joined up strategic approach necessary for success.