We have some amazing people working at Gore Mutual who are here to support you and your clients every day. We want to give you the opportunity to get to know them a bit better, so that’s why we’ve created our new Meet Our Underwriters feature.
For our first interview we caught up with Chris Stephens, the Regional Operations Manager on our Commercial Insurance Solutions team. Let’s see what he had to say.
You started at Gore Mutual this past spring. Tell us a little about your professional experience before joining us.
I started in Commercial insurance about 12 years ago at AXA working on their mid-market team. From AXA I moved to Intact and then onto Premier Marine where I specialized in professional liability. After Premier Marine I joined Aviva’s Commercial mid-market team working on product development. But I was missing the broker interactions, so I made the move to Burns & Wilcox to lead their professional liability department.
What have you been working on since coming to Gore Mutual?
As soon as I joined the team, I jumped on board to help with the new Errors and Omissions (E&O) product that we launched at Fast Forward. Coming from a professional liability background, I knew that I could help make some changes to better align ourselves in the market.
What do you want brokers to know about our new E&O product?
We have two separate products. The first is our Miscellaneous E&O for professionals. The product was designed to round out their coverage beyond their office and Commercial General Liability (CGL) policies. And instead of having to place the E&O with someone else, now brokers can put their customers’ business all together in one place.
The second product is our Contractors E&O. There aren’t a lot of markets that offer Contractors E&O. We have a large book of contractors business and this E&O coverage ensures that they have a complete insurance package.
Why do contractors need E&O coverage?
Contractors often consult on the design work and that’s generally where their E&O exposure comes in. There’s often a grey area between the CGL and the E&O in the design space. By combining their CGL and their E&O together, we’re providing a complete package.
Why can it be difficult to sell E&O?
E&O can be a tough sell because many business owners are confident that they’re not going to make mistakes. But it’s not just about if they make a mistake, it’s also if their customers feel that they made a mistake. Even if they didn’t do anything wrong, they could still be looking at very expensive defense costs.
What does our E&O pricing look like?
Our pricing is very competitive. For small contractors with small limits, our policies start at $50 and go up from there.
What’s the best career advice you’ve ever received?
You will never feel 100% ready when an opportunity arises – so just do it.
What is something people might not know about you?
I love to travel and recently came back from a trip to Argentina and Peru. The next big trip is likely Morocco. If anyone has been to Morocco and has some recommendations for me, I’d love to hear them.