Interrupting people, people say I am calm (which I take as a compliment).
What’s your worst quality? What’s your best quality?
How did you get into insurance?
I joined Royal Insurance Direct in 1993 part-time to earn some money whilst lecturing (French Politics/History) part-time and doing a PHD. I like it so much I stayed.
What is your main priority at the moment?
Ensuring that the HR Operations team continue to deliver and enjoy working for RSA.
Do you have a hidden talent or passion?
I walk about 50 miles a week. I walk 6 miles each morning at 5.30 am and at weekends yomp for hours. I am planning to walk the whole of the Camino Frances which is about 800km.
What change would you like to see in the insurance industry/RSA in the next 3 years?
To be successful and hit our growth targets, people enjoy working for a company that is doing well. The new UK strategy gives hope that we will be able to do that.
What’s your most embarrassing work experience?
It was a work meeting in a hotel that we were staying over in. I got up in the middle of the night to go the loo but went out the wrong door into the lobby, door closed behind me and I was locked out naked in the corridor. I phoned reception and asked them to let me in, they said come down and we can give you a key. I explained the situation and they sent someone up to let me in the room. Thankfully there was an old-style steel ashtray there which I put to good use!!!
You can invite 4 people to your dinner party who are they? Why?
Dinner parties should have great food, be exciting, and contain lots of debate. So I would invite Leon Trotsky for his arrogance and insight, Karl Marx because he did like a drink and also had some views, Joe Guidice (from The Real Housewives of New Jersey) to pay for everything, and Peter Kay to make us laugh.
What are you currently binge-watching/listening/reading?
The Watcher on Netflix and listening to a book by John Williams called ‘Stoner’ for about the fourth time.
Tell us a joke!
SNP MP in parliament said that Liz Truss sacking Kwasi Kwarteng was like the ventriloquist sacking the dummy for saying the wrong thing.
What’s your biscuit of choice and why?
You don’t get a body like mine by eating biscuits!
What odds do you think you'd get on our Director of HR Operations being a Real Housewives of New Jersey lover? That’s not the last surprise in this work-life balance interview from Ian Templeman.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
The Real Housewives of New Jersey.
If you weren’t in insurance, what would you be doing?
I served an apprenticeship as an Electrician and did that for 6 years, so knees/eyes permitting, I would still be doing that, very badly.
What did you not expect about working in the insurance industry?
To still be here, I was passing through on the way to a glorious teaching/academic career.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t go 12 years without getting a haircut, a pony tail down your back is not a good look, son.
What are your 3 top tips for maintaining a healthy work life balance?
Do some exercise, eat well, and have a sense of humour/perspective.
What is your happiest memory at RSA?
I have loads of happy memories and have met lots of really good/nice people. The good memories are endless thankfully as I have spent more than half my life here.
What would you say to someone considering a career in insurance?
Its not all glamour, there are bad times too.