An introduction to Punter Southall Aspire's health and protection business
David Taylor and Anne Drugnick lead Punter Southall Aspire’s health and protection consultancy. Here, David gives his take on how a changing world means a different yet well-established approach.
Punter Southall Aspire’s health and protection business is shaping its consultancy to reflect how organisations are themselves adapting to a new reality.
Hybrid working in the wake of the pandemic has been one of the most significant adjustments in the way a business organises itself. The cost of living crisis is being felt by everyone, individuals to corporates, and is heralding a more enlightened approach to how companies shape health and protection in response.
If colleagues are able to work from home or remotely some or all of the time, if external forces are causing them concern and the world around them is shifting, shouldn’t the way we design health and protection for them evolve as well?
That’s what we believe and we’re confident that our presence – and practice - is fostering more creative dialogue and enlightened, appropriate cover.
It’s tempting to see health and protection in terms of simply off-the-shelf policies but our experience informs us that taking the time to understand what clients really need means more considered engagement.
As a boutique operation, we have created the space to shape our knowledge of the market to design what’s the best fit for each, individual client.
We don’t regard this as a novel approach – just the right one. Let me give you some background.
Some years ago, instead of endless emailing on the commute, I jolted myself into studying for a degree in classics. I really enjoyed the Open University experience and would recommend it to anyone.
Not only did the ancient Greeks invent a form of insurance - Thales is thought to be father to the first futures contract, demonstrating to olive farmers that they could insulate themselves from a bad harvest by fixing a price for olive pressing well ahead of the allotted ripening – but also pioneered the Socratic method.
Suffice to say that not everyone may be as enthusiastic about the classics as me but one of the outcomes from this method is that by asking questions, you draw out not only the answers but underlying supposition and beliefs. In other words, really get to the nub of the challenge, problem or idea.
That’s always struck me as an effective way to go about framing what your organisation needs when it comes to health and protection. Spending a little time to really understand what’s required can result in a solution very different from that initially envisaged.
We know that taking that time to talk through what health and protection might look like for your organisation often results in a more suitable framework while saving money in the process.
Our stated aim is to delight our clients and we believe this methodology is central to doing so. Call it a lesson from history but we view this kind of exchange as vital to understanding the turbulent 21st century, corporate landscape.
David has been involved in financial services all his career, focussing on the corporate sector since 1995, covering the full range of employee benefits including DB, DC, risk, healthcare, platforms, and wellbeing. He has worked for a number of businesses in roles including Managing Director and COO, and has always maintained active client involvement. He has twice won the Corporate Adviser Firm of the Year award, including the inaugural award in 2008. He is a regular contributor to industry media and awards judge. He has a degree in Classics.