Creating Next-Gen Insurers and Financial Consultants
Focused on the global insurance market, IFAAcademy specializes in imparting education and training to insurance and financial consultants. In an effort to rebuild financial and insurance consulting industry, the company plans to re-engineer and rebrand the insurance advisors. Through implementation of risk management for scientific insurable assessment and risk profiling, IFAAcademy uses cutting-edge neuroscience research on risk perception and decision-making methodologies.
Panos Leledakis, Founder & CEO, IFAAcademy believes in a vision to help transform insurance advisors to the new scientific ‘InsurableRisk managers’ and to be the architects of a safer world. Excerpts form an interview with Panos:
IFAAcademy – The Story Behind
Panos noted that insurance played a pivotal role especially in today’s complex world. “Unfortunately, despite its importance, the sector suffered a setback in terms of the way it is perceived by many people and its penetration into various societies too remains very low globally. He observed that not many people want a career as an insurance advisor because it is not considered as a respectable profession by many. “In many countries like in the USA, the average age of the advisors is 55- 59 years old. This speaks volumes. This means that there is a huge recruitment problem and the profession is aging dangerously. Our mission in life is to create a new model of the insurance agent as an insurable risk manager and IFAAcademy was born out of this vision.”
Creating ‘Risk management architects’
Panos noted that the company’s vision was to disrupt the insurance consulting industry and to create new scientific consultant – ‘The insurable Risk management architects.’ By using its cutting-edge technological solution, an insurance agent can make a scientific risk diagnosis, that could be measured with specific factors and help generate an automated risk report. “This way the individual can have a risk matrix, prioritization and quantification of risks in a very clear and easy-to-understand format which would help them in risk profiling of their businesses or families. “
Technology to the Rescue
Panos added that AI and Cloud Technology helped the industry create new opportunities, facilitating better way of claims and enhancing underwriting and customer services. “In the digital era, claims are also emerging as an area to cement customer loyalty. Improving customer experience and engaging customers is the top strategic initiative for insurers globally, and customers are rarely more engaged than in the claims process.” Noting that the recent Covid pandemic accelerated the digital transformation, Panos noted that the situation forced both insurance advisors and consumers create an omnichannel environment of communication. He is one of the first utilizing Virtual Reality to his educational methods and he was the first hologram speaker in his country. “Lastly, I believe very much in chatbots and conversational AI that can transform the way we interact with the consumers,” he added.
Stressing on the need for the sector to be more agile now, Panos noted, “We need a new go-to-market strategy to address increasing customer sophistication. Insurers who are client-centric, innovative, technologically up-to-date, and supportive of their talent, will lead the charge to increase insurance penetration levels.”
One of the biggest challenges for the industry is to approach millennials and the new generations- both as clients and advisors, noted Panos. “85 % of millennials are not familiar with the insurance industry, according to global research and 65% of them think that we are an old fashion profession with no innovation and technology. I strongly believe that the future of the insurance sector will be a bright one considering that the penetration globally is very low and the margins for development are great as long as we adapt in this new world rising and the industrial revolution 4.0.”
For Panos, the proudest moment in his professional life, except the many global innovation awards, has been when he was invited by GAMA International (USA), to present his project in NASA Houston space center facilities to an audience of C-suite executives from all the insurance companies of the US. “It was a unique experience and gave us great hope as our idea was received in a very positive way,” he beamed.