The Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association (WSIA) is a world-class member service organization representing the entirety of the wholesale, specialty and surplus lines industry. The Wholesale & Specialty Insurance Association was formed in 2017 through the merger of the American Association of Managing General Agents (AAMGA) and the National Association of Professional Surplus Lines Offices (NAPSLO). At the moment, there are 10 different WSIA Committees. 

One of the keys to a successful association is the commitment and energy of its individual members. WSIA’s success can be traced to its members’ willingness to help through volunteering for committee service. WSIA member firms rely on the association to provide a host of services that enhance the effectiveness and successes of the wholesale, specialty, and surplus lines industry. 

The mission of the Membership & Ethics Committee is to recommend new members to the Board of Directors according to the schedule selected by the Board each calendar year. This will include recommendations for voting members: U.S. Wholesale Members, U.S. Insurance Market Members, and Associate Members as well as non-voting members: Service Members, Life Members and Honorary Members. OIP is honored to have two representatives as members of this committee – Milica Rajkovic, Senior Internal Auditor and Tatjana Spasojevic, Assistant Director of Operations.

Ethics and Insurance –What’s the Link? 

Tatjana and Milica share their perspective on the topic. As professionals, we all believe we are being ethical while doing our job, but is it really like that? When was the last time you asked yourself – is this an ethical thing to do? When a catastrophic claim happens, such as losing your home or severe bodily injury, it is very important to know – is this being covered under the insurance policy? If all the company participants in the policy lifecycle are ethical from the start, the answer to this question is clear. Retailer, MGA, Carrier duty is to inform the insured what is being covered and what is being excluded from the insurance policy. Making a parallel with the Membership and Ethics Committee – members have this question on their mind: is this applicant fulfilling all the conditions to become a part of this organization? Regardless of the business connections or personal relationships, there are no exceptions. Being ethical is always the right thing to do.

Milica Rajkovic (Second Year Committee Member) – Internal Audit and Ethics Point of View

Where do I see the connection between my daily job and WSIA committee membership? Being at OIP for over 5 years, it affected my perspective in so many ways. Since everyone in the organization started from an entry level position and worked their way up, I had processed a number of tasks myself before I moved to the Internal Audit Department. Now, processing tasks yourself and auditing them are entirely different perspectives. Being an Internal Auditor triggers your integrity very often and makes you ask yourself – is this the correct way of doing things? Being Ethical while performing audits is a must. Internal Audit is not just marking documents and tasks as correct or incorrect, but changing procedures, educating colleagues on the proper task processing and the extent of a possible consequence if the task is not processed right, teaching them how to make decisions which will directly influence our organization. 

We audit hundreds and thousands of tasks. I can proudly say that our accuracy is extremely high. But do we audit enough tasks? Never. We continuously strive for perfection and remind each other of the true values of business conduct – from my perspective, being Ethical.

Tatjana Spasojevic (FirstYear Committee Member) –  Ethics Point of View in Account and People Management

As the Assistant Director of Operations at OIP, my role is to constantly oversee, manage and interact with different types of people, therefore honoring professional conduct and business ethics is a must in my role.  A colleague asked me the other day how am I always so positive and optimistic even when things are not going into the right direction? It is easy – I love my job. Because I love what I do, I can see beyond a tough day or an unexpected turn. Being in this position for almost 2 years taught me that there is always something to be gained and learned from every encounter, interaction, and circumstance we are a part of. Every situation offers a learning opportunity and an outlet to become better in the long-run. 

On the most basic level, I enjoy talking and working with people. My job provides an opportunity to put that basic urge to use for a purpose. It is always changing, always evolving, and I get front row seats watching the process of a simple idea grow into reality and a successful business. As an Assistant Director I am primarily responsible for providing leadership support and guidance to the OIP team and ensuring that the team complies with the objectives and standards of the organization in order to meet customer satisfaction and deadlines. My work ethic, experience, expertise and willingness to broaden my knowledge led me to apply for the Membership & Ethics Committee. Thoroughly conducting due diligence reviews of applications and related documentation and validating the applicant’s compliance with WSIA membership criteria was a great opportunity to put my skills to good use. When you serve on a committee, you have the honor, challenge, and responsibility of understanding how everything needs to work together for an organization to accomplish its goals. It’s invigorating. Not only did I have the opportunity to meet like-minded people with the aim to provide the services so vital for our industry, but I also witnessed how important it is to build an environment where everyone’s opinion is heard.

Serving on a committee is a rewarding and beneficial activity that brought me the opportunity to develop and grow, cultivate new skill sets, and expand my network of peers, professionals and industry leaders.