Konsileo Dream Team: Business Insurance in Cleethorpes
Rick Wales and Jack Genney are two Grimsby/Cleethorpes locals at opposite ends of their career, who are proving to be a dream broking team, providing business insurance for firms in and around the area.
Aged 57 and 29 respectively, the pair have formed a close bond that not only makes the day job better, but enhances the service they offer their clients, too.
How would you describe each other in 3(ish) words?
“Jack is driven, self-motivated, and has great integrity,” says Rick. “He’s happy-go-lucky and just an all-round good guy. Honestly, he makes it a pleasure to come to work.”
“I’d describe Rick as wise, calm, transparent – and if I could have another word it would be fun. We have a lot of banter, but there’s a lot of respect there, too – on both sides.”
What do you think makes your relationship work?
“It feels like it shouldn’t work, on paper, but it really does! Jack reminds me of myself when I was his age,” explains Rick. “It’s great to be given the opportunity to impart my knowledge and experience and assist in Jack’s development.
“I think we recognised something in each other,” adds Jack. “We’ve got a lot in common socially, we know a lot of the same people and we have a similar outlook on life – as well as working in the same way.”
“For both of us, it’s all about building great long lasting client relationships and really getting to know their businesses,” adds Rick.
“Broking is about knowing people,” agrees Jack. “And personality and transparency is so important. You can be the most technical and most knowledgeable broker in the world, but if you’re not able to connect with clients, building trust and truly understanding what your clients and prospective clients want from a broker, then it won’t work. We both do that in a similar way, and I think people really respond to our relationship and our energy.”
How do you work together?
“I think it was really important to both of us to be in an office environment rather than totally remote, because we both like having someone to bounce things off,” continues Jack. “So, we’re always chatting, brainstorming, and researching and coming up with new solutions. Two brains are without a doubt better than one! At Konsileo, you get a lot more brain power – because you can bring in experts from across the organisation to really tailor-make cover for a client. Therefore, collaboration is key.”
“Konsileo is unique in that way,” says Rick. “Collaboration is really encouraged across the organisation and in local offices or Hubs like ours. Day-to-day, Jack and I tag team a lot, but we also visit a lot of clients together – particularly when we are meeting a client for the first time.
“For me, I suppose it’s about succession planning. I’m heading to three days a week now, working towards retirement, so this is my last job. I wanted it to be a good one, and thanks to Jack and the rest of the amazing team we’ve got here, it really is!”
“It would have been such a shame to leave a 40+ year career in the insurance broking industry without passing on some of the stuff I’ve learned along the way. I mean, I’ve been round the block a bit! And Jack’s been really open to that. So, I know when I do decide to call it a day and put my feet up, my clients will be in really safe hands with him.”
What HAVE you learned from each other?
“Rick has been there and done that and seen it all before,” says Jack. “There isn’t a situation he hasn’t already been in, and that’s pure experience. Being able to draw from his wealth of knowledge is brilliant – and now I’m able to draw from my own experience too, because thanks to Rick, I’m growing as a broker all the time. He’s taught me how to handle a lot of different situations, and how to be a lot calmer. If something wasn’t going my way I used to get into a bit of a flap. Now if there’s a bump in the road or a case is up in the air, I’m much better equipped at taking it all in my stride and focussing on figuring out a solution – and I’ve learned that from Rick.”
“I think Jack’s really helped me fall back in love with the job,” says Rick. “He’s taught me how to take things a bit less seriously, and he’s got this endless enthusiasm for the job. After some hard years doing some really hard things in some really senior positions, I’ve never enjoyed work as much as I do now. THIS is what I love about broking. This is how the job should be done.”
Do you think you’d have the same working relationship in a different organisation?
“Rick has been an absolutely brilliant mentor for me, and I learn so much from him every day. But he’s not officially my manager,” says Jack, “and if he was it just wouldn’t be quite the same thing. We wouldn’t be able to do what we do.”
Rick agrees. “I don’t think we’d have the relationship we do if we were anywhere else but Konsileo. In any organisation with a hierarchy, there has to be a distance between management and employees. At Konsileo there is no line management. There’s no micro-management either. No one is beating you over the head with a stick to achieve the numbers or use certain markets. Because of that freedom, we both see the Cleethorpes Hub as our own business, as do the rest of the team, and we share a common vision for how we want to work and where we want to take it.”
What’s so special about Konsileo?
“I think you’re empowered here to work how you want to work, build your business how you want to build it, and deal with the people you want to deal with. That’s everything to me,” says Rick.
“I need to tell you that the remuneration is fantastic,” says Jack, “but Rick’s right, the really special bit is those relationships you develop. You can pick the people you work best with, who can help you serve your clients the best, and that’s when special things happen.”
What do clients make of you?
“If I turn up without Jack they’re always asking where my son is today,” says Rick. “People make a joke about our age difference, but they know we’re actually interchangeable – and that we’re really good at what we do.”
“Word gets round a bit – so we’re getting a bit of a reputation,” says Jack. “In a good way! People know we know our stuff, and they know we care. We treat our client’s business’ like they were our own”.
“The point is we make a great team, delivering a great service to our clients, and having a great time whilst we to it.”
“You can’t ask for more than that in your job,” concludes Jack.