The Best Time to Fix the Roof? When the Sun Is Shining


The Best Time to Fix the Roof? When the Sun Is ShiningEarlier this year, we experienced a series of significant hailstorms here in central North Carolina. They were intense, pretty in a “nature is awesome” kind of way, and over pretty quickly. Only later did we discover that there was some notable damage to the roof of our house. 

Ironically for someone who has made a career in the insurance industry, this led to my wife’s and my opportunity to file our first ever homeowners claim. The whole process with our carrier was an amazing, industrialized choreography. From the review of the damage to the processing of the initial payment, to the stripping of the old shingles, the delivery of the new ones, and the installation of the new roof, every stage was brilliant. 

Regardless of their role, everyone involved in the effort knew exactly what they were supposed to do, and when they were supposed to do it. The project was completed ahead of schedule. Six hours after the hammering stopped, the heavy rains arrived. Sometimes luck plays a role, although as one of my many mentors along the way said, “Luck is nothing more than the residual byproduct of hard work.”  Whatever luck actually is, I was happy to have some.

The whole experience reminded me of President John Kennedy’s State of the Union Speech from 1962, when he notes, “The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining.” While he was talking about the economy, rather than a roofing job, the metaphor is powerful.

Insurance carrier CIOs should take note of this as they roll rapidly toward finalizing budgets and plans for 2023. We’re living in very uncertain times, when there is significant buffeting in the industry specifically and the economy at large.

We continue to work toward (we hope) a post-pandemic era, new medical concerns (e.g., monkeypox) are emerging, a war in Eastern Europe rages, there’s uncertainty and contention in the Pacific, demographic shifts are becoming seismic, talent challenges are all around us, and technology is moving forward at a breathtaking speed in many areas. 

And yet, with all of this, we may actually be in the calm period right now. Planning for a wide array of possible challenges, aligning resources across organizations, and preparing “Plan B” options in case the presumed scenarios are wrong may be the difference between thriving and simply surviving over the course of the coming planning horizon.

This is also a terrific time to share insights and perspectives. We’re excited to be able to host our upcoming Research Council meeting in Las Vegas on September 20th, the day before ITC officially kicks off. Join members of our senior team as well as four carrier CIOs, who will be sharing their own insights from the front lines of the planning efforts. The best time to get ready for the future is right now. 

Have questions about our Research Council meeting? Feel free to email me at [email protected]