NASBP's 5-15 Leadership Circle has expanded its pool of mentors available to provide insight to future leaders of the surety industry, Committee Chairman Brian Ayres said at the 2015 NASBP Annual Meeting & Expo, in San Diego.
The number of 5-15 program members now totals 41, exceeding the number of mentors, who had been drawn from past presidents and former members of the group, Ayres said. A change this year will allow current and former board members to serve as mentors, as well.
The mentorships help address age, talent and knowledge gaps in the surety industry as mentees learn how to “get comfortable being uncomfortable” in their knowledge levels, because there is always a new aspect of the industry to learn, Ayres said. The mentorship program helps participants in the 5-15 Committee expand their knowledge, but mentors “get as much out of it,” he said.
The 5-15 Leadership Circle was established by Steve Cory during his presidency in 2006-2007. Participants are employees of NASBP member agencies and must be nominated by their managers or senior officers.
Ayres' mentor is Todd Loehnert, President of L A Surety Solutions in Louisville, KY, where Ayres is Senior Partner. Ayres said Loehnert got him into the surety business in 2007.
Travis Schreiber, Surety Account Executive at M3 Insurance Solutions in Madison, Wis., has been working with his mentor, NASBP Past President Spence Miller, since last year. He plans to further develop that mentoring relationship, determine his goals and get sound advice from leaders in the industry.
“I'm hoping to avoid some mistakes, bounce ideas off him and just learn some of those things that most of the guys at NASBP probably have learned through years and years of experience. I want to accelerate that process,” Schreiber said.
The 5-15 Leadership Circle also offers participants access to major surety companies and their executives, Ayres said. The presentations at this year's NASBP Annual Meeting are geared more toward those in the program, he said. The Guarantee Company of North America will be making a presentation for the 5-15 Leadership Breakfast, on Monday. Participants in the program also will have other opportunities to meet one-on-one with executives attending the Annual Meeting, Ayres said.
In previous years, 5-15 participants have visited the home offices of major surety and insurance companies, and they are looking to make another such trip soon.
Additional information about the 5-15 Leadership Circle is available at www.nasbp.org.