10 of our amazing people were recognized by their colleagues for living our SiriusPoint values and were nominated by their colleagues to be on the podium for the New York Stock Exchange bell ringing in August. We are more than just our jobs, and as ‘One SiriusPoint’ it’s important we understand how every person plays a role in helping us to be recognized as a best-in-class insurer and reinsurer. Meet Marc Wyss, Managing Director of our Zurich Branch.
I’m the Branch Manager of the Zurich branch and the Product Head for Aviation and Space, so I wear two hats.
When it comes to being a Product Head, I’m responsible for the strategy, risk appetite, and new business for Aviation & Space for the whole Group.
As a Branch Manager, that’s very different. I’m responsible for all of our team in Zurich, and everything which is related to the branch. That could be salary administration, pension schemes, insurance, furniture – anything.
As a consequence, my daily work is hugely varied between the two roles. It can include HR support and issues, thinking about office space, employing someone new, or changes to the pension scheme. That’s less reinsurance specific, and then the rest is more typical. We work on aviation risks, strategy, planning and budget. I also still underwrite one or two pieces of business from time to time, which I’m trying to maintain as long as I can.
I travel a lot too, seeing clients with my Underwriters. I meet with the rest of Rob Gibbs’ senior team often to talk about the wider picture of the strategy for Sirius International.
I’m very happy about all of this, because often in the morning I don’t know what’s going to happen that day. There’s never been a dull moment in the last 20 years.
Although the variety makes it exciting, it can also be a challenge. It’s hard to plan a full week, and I often have interferences in my day which make it difficult to be focused and finish something. Travelling can also be demanding, because I need to be here in the office to deal with local issues at the same time.
I enjoy the commercial side of things, which is why I still like to do some underwriting from time to time. I also like to talk to people and get to know them better, more than just what they do for work.
Getting to know people better
It’s important for me that I know more about my team than just their business side. It makes work a nicer place to be and I understand everyone’s strengths and weaknesses. We’re a small team but have been working with each other for more than 10 years, so we know each other very well.
Integrity, as a value, really matters to me. Long-term collaboration is difficult to achieve if you don’t have integrity, and being transparent, open and being yourself is something I learned from my parents. Now that we’re doing less work face-to-face, I think integrity really matters even more than before.
I’m very proud of my team. We have been working together for a long time, and the team spirit in Zurich really is fantastic. It makes stressful situations much easier, because you can count on each other, and you know exactly why someone might be having a bad day. It helps us to be efficient as a team.
The bell ringing experience and my life outside SiriusPoint
Getting to be at the bell ringing was an amazing experience for me. It was particularly special because I have an interest in the stock market, and I started my working life at Credit Suisse First Boston on the trading floor. I didn’t even know this was on my bucket list because I would never have thought it was possible to get on stage there, but it’s something checked off for sure. I couldn’t stop smiling when I was there, and I felt honored to be chosen by my colleagues to take part.
I would like to say that if I weren’t doing this job, I would be lying on the beach drinking a pina colada, but I think I’d probably be working in a bank. Private banking is a similar role to what I do here, analyzing risks and investing in the stock market and using your social skills to support clients.
If not, I would maybe find some kind of job where I could combine my love of the outdoors with work. I used to play a lot of soccer and tennis, but because of some back problems I’ve switched to focusing on biking, hiking, and running now. I’m lucky to live in Switzerland, where I can go on a hike only 20 minutes away or do a biking tour directly from my house.
I am married and have two children, who are 14 and 17, and I spend as much time with them as I can. I like to read, too. I used to read a lot of classics like Dostoyevsky and Charles Dickens, but now that I have less time to dedicate to it, I tend to read Scandinavian thrillers or other crime books. I’d recommend reading David Copperfield or Nicholas Nickleby, or if you’re more into thrillers then try Karin Slaughter or Jo Nesbo.