Client Story: Travelers 2018-11-08T16:23:45-05:00
Giving Employees Business Acumen is Giving Employees Meaning
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Travelers is the second largest writer of U.S. commercial property casualty insurance and the third largest writer of U.S. personal insurance through independent agents.

  • US $25 Billion in revenues

  • 28,000 employees

  • Operations in the UK, China, Brazil and Canada

The Challenge

Many front-line employees of the Claim division of Travelers insurance felt adrift. “As I traveled around,” said Doreen Spadorcia, Executive Vice President of Claim Services, “a question kept repeating itself: what is the vision for Claim? Where are we going? And how does what I do matter?” She and other Travelers executives found that out of the roughly 20,000 Claim employees, a growing number did not have a solid understanding of their place in the company, and as a result, they also had trouble engaging. The work of Claim employees would feel less disconnected if only they knew the vital impact they had every day on other departments and the health and future of the company. Applied Learning set out to make that happen.

The Approach

Utilizing our previous experiences with helping employees understand their value chain and teaching financial acumen to non-financial employees, Applied Learning created a series of Knowledge Maps for the Claim division. Throughout its interviews with executives, managers, and employees, it received plenty of different perspectives and complex information about the business, which it then translated into storyboards, visual concepts and a conversational framework. Among other things, Applied Learning was able to explain the nature of the industry, the competition Travelers faced, the relationships between the Claim division and other parts of the company, the impact of the division on the profit stream, and the role that each employee would play in executing Travelers’ vision for the future. This vital information was explained in Knowledge Map sessions across the country, both at pre-existing events such as regional managers’ meetings and at the different offices. The learning cascaded through the company as select employees who experienced the Knowledge Maps were then trained to deliver that same learning to other employees in different Knowledge Map sessions.

The Result

All employees at every level within the Claim division came away from their Knowledge Map sessions with a better understanding of the industry they worked in, the company they worked in, and their meaning within both. The quality of their learning experiences was reflected within the results of a survey that all participants took at the end of their sessions: 98.7% of participants felt that the Knowledge Map session helped them understand Claim’s strategic direction and how they could leverage future business opportunities. 99% of participants said that after the session, they were able to communicate Travelers’ strategic direction and values to others. Most encouragingly, 95.5% agreed that their time was well-spent in attending their Knowledge Map session. In the end, the new understanding of Travelers’ strategy and values led the Claim employees to engage with their work and the Claim division to operate more effectively.

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