Make Your Staff Training Programme Work For You

Investing in effective staff training for your employees may mean the difference between success and failure

Recently we had the pleasure of catching up with revered CII trainer, Diane Jenkins to ask how brokers and business firms alike can reap the benefits of staff training, as well as some of the pitfalls that businesses can potentially fall into.

Keep training relevant

When building an effective staff training programme, you need to consider that it is important for your company to assess the benefits of the training program that you can offer your employees.  Relevance is key in any training offered. Employees dread trainings which have no relevance to their daily work. As a result, many are not engaged or simply refuse to participate. Making certain that the course material is relevant will help the participants now and help establish a solid foundation that will benefit your business and its future. As surmised by Diane Jenkins:

“Any training that has been forced onto someone is usually time wasted. Not making the training relevant to their jobs, or practical enough. One of the biggest mistakes that brokers tend to make is too much focus on ‘must have’ training like sales skills and compliance and not enough focus on understanding of what they are selling (as we have seen with lack of understanding of business interruption cover demonstrated by FCA Supreme Court case). I have a particular concern about lack of understanding on BI and I have been the London Business Interruption Association Education Secretary for many years”.

Adapting to changes

All industries experience cycles of expansion and contraction, and this is particularly true of the insurance industry. Recently the overall insurance market conditions have reverted to a state of hardening. There are very few insurance coverages that have not seen rate increases in the past several months. Different market conditions call for different approaches to training.

“In a soft market price is the key issue, in a hard market technical knowledge becomes key – brokers need to understand the risk and potential insurance solutions well enough to be able to delete unnecessary cover and redesign programmes. As an example, I once asked a broker why they had sold their client a particular type of policy that was not needed – the answer was the client had it last year and as not sure what was covered thought it better to keep it! In a hard market wasting a client’s money in this way will cause a client to change brokers. A lot of businesses have changed the way they work but their brokers have not changed the insurance they are buying for them. We are (not surprisingly) seeing an increase in the cost of brokers errors and omission insurance.”


Your objectives should be presented as SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-based. Creating goals in this manner can help you ensure your employees reach important milestones within their training.

Key considerations

At Searchlight, we believe that whilst there is no ‘one size fits all’ definition for appropriate staff training, there are core fundamentals which every business can benefit from.

Continuous and effective staff training is crucial to creating the modern, agile, successful business. Organizations that implement comprehensive internal employee training programs see reduced turnover, higher profits, and an overall healthy workplace culture.

To discuss how you can open your business to a more effective means of training, whether regulatory, soft skills, compliance or technical knowledge please email:



Meet The Trainer – Diane Jenkins ACII


I have been involved in training almost as long as I have been working in insurance. (That is 40 years.) I started as an insurance company graduate trainee (only woman) and within a year was asked to do induction training to the next intake of graduates. For many years I did training alongside my main roles but in 2005 I was made the director in charge of technical training in the UK for Aon (still alongside other things), so the team designed and set up a technical training programme, some of which I delivered. I set up my own firm in 2013 after leaving Aon, I still do training alongside other things for example providing policy wording consultancy and cyber policy comparisons for a policy comparison web site.


Courses delivered by Diane

Searchlight are delighted to work alongside Diane Jenkins to deliver

Broking in a hard market – practical tips and hints for key classes

Directors and Officers Liability – Introduction

Global Insurance

Policy Wording Interpretations

Parametric Insurance

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