Chartered Insurance Institute Hong Kong committee member Trevor Smith speaks to The Journal-¦
Trevor Smith, executive coach, facilitator and business performance consultant at The Orchard Partnership, has been a Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) member for more than 25 years and is an active member of the Chartered Insurance Institute Hong Kong committee. He talks to The Journal about his career journey, which has led him to the Far East, and his goals for the future of the profession.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOUR ROLE AND WHAT INTERESTED YOU TO BECOME INVOLVED WITH THE CII HONG KONG?
I wanted to be part of Mark Greenwood and Helen Robert's vision for Asia; there is work to be done but there is a great base to work from. In terms of my own role, through what I call 'meaningful CPD' and one-to-one coaching, I help insurance businesses succeed and professionals flourish. My focus is to inspire, positively challenge and help remove rocks from the runway.
WHAT DO YOU DO IN A TYPICAL WORKING DAY?
I have the privilege of being assigned as executive coach to some amazing people -- government officials, c-suite executives, business owners, sales professionals, non-profits and TV personalities. On average, 50% of my day is spent face-to-face with them or training their teams to excel. What I enjoy most is helping others to establish their definition of success and supporting them to achieve this in an ethical manner.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN YOUR ROLE?
I am currently writing a book titled The Trusted Professional, to share my findings from research with 45 top professionals from all around the world. Firstly, it is vital to have a clear and passionate vision of how to spend one's allotted time on Earth. Let's call it good stewardship. I've heard it said that "life is like a coin, you can spend it any way you like, but you can only spend it once".
Also, it is important to have a genuine and sincere desire to put yourself in others' shoes and put them ahead of yourself, and that you add value to the profession and have something to bring to the party. I often ask myself: "Why is the world better for me having lived?"
Finally, I'd say you need to work hard consistently and always, always spend time on preparation -- don't practice in the final!
HOW DO YOU FEEL THE CII CAN HELP TO RAISE STANDARDS AND PROFESSIONALISM?
By walking the talk, setting the standards and demonstrating that we are world class. For me, it's all about having credibility, leaving a positive legacy and being rewarded fairly for this. I believe passionately in what we do -- we make a real difference to people's lives.
HOW DO YOU THINK CII CAN HELP TO ATTRACT TALENT INTO THE INDUSTRY?
Remember that the CII is not as well known in Asia, so we need to continue to work hard to raise our profile to demonstrate to regulators, employers and individuals within Asia that we are the benchmark for the profession.