BI’s Article search uses Boolean search capabilities. If you are not familiar with these principles, here are some quick tips.
To search specifically for more than one word, put the search term in quotation marks. For example, “workers compensation”. This will limit your search to that combination of words.
To search for a combination of terms, use quotations and the & symbol. For example, “hurricane” & “loss”.
Teresa W. Chan
Senior Vice President, AIG Energy Warranty
American International Group Inc.
Teresa Chan is senior vice president responsible for the management of American International Group Inc.’s new energy warranty product, which provides technology risk transfer coverage worldwide to renewable, alternative and conventional energy facility owners/developers and contractors who need to provide systems performance assurance to their investment and lending partners. Among other positions at AIG, Ms. Chan also has served as AIG’s counsel to corporate product development.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE WOMEN ENTERING THIS FIELD?
The Business Insurance Women to Watch program reinforces the fact that women need to be recognized for their contributions to the insurance industry. Clearly, women bring something different yet constructive to an industry where convention often dictates how business is done. So there is an inherent obligation for women to meet the challenge of bringing our ideas, solutions and strategies to the table as often as possible and, most importantly, pushing the envelope to have them heard, accepted and implemented. The most effective way of achieving this is by finding a mentor and/or a department conducive to embracing the differences, and once you do, you can thrive.
WHAT’S THE BEST ADVICE YOU’VE RECEIVED IN YOUR LIFE?
I grew up in a highly competitive environment where academic achievement was the be all, end all. Success was always compared against milestones that were dictated by my environment. A lot of that pressure was alleviated when someone took the time to convince me, and I started to accept, that the expectations and perceptions of others are not the measure of success. Success is measured by what I want to achieve and, more importantly, being able to recognize what I’ve accomplished.
WHAT’S THE BEST-KEPT SECRET ABOUT WORKING IN THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY?
Insurance professionals who have more diverse backgrounds and skills than one would expect. I have had the pleasure of working with people who come from all walks of life, who earlier in their careers were bankers, naval engineers and officers, musicians and writers who are now successful actuaries, underwriters, and systems specialists. I learn of their proficiencies when I challenge them for guidance and support, and they rise to the occasion because they are always eager to stretch beyond their core functions. I never cease to be amazed by their modesty and their generosity of ideas and willingness to think outside the box. They are the reason I enjoy my work and why I have had the fortune of experiencing success.
WHAT’S THE NEXT MAJOR CHALLENGE IN YOUR BUSINESS SECTOR?
The next major challenge in the energy project development sector is continuing to be able to provide supplemental alternatives that project owners and developers need to get them across the finish line. Investment and financing sources are increasingly risk averse, and the governmental resources available to new project development remain scarce. Thus, there is an increasing demand for products and services that provide added value.
WHAT DO YOU TO DO RELIEVE STRESS?
Take long walks that eventually lead to a bakery.
WHAT’S YOUR SECRET VICE?
Watching do-it-yourself home improvement shows on late-night TV and then attempting projects in my spare time. I think the sense of tangible accomplishment provides a balance to the cerebral challenges of work. But I’m not ready to quit my day job just yet.
WHAT SKILL HAS BEEN AN UNEXPECTED AID TO YOUR CAREER?
I am pleasantly surprised by the extent to which I apply the disciplines of an engineer’s thought process. The opportunity to apply detail-oriented, logic and analytical skills to policy drafting, business development, underwriting and claims administration — especially in my current role with respect to the energy warranty product — has not only aided my career but has made my current responsibilities the most interesting and rewarding to date.
WHAT’S AT THE TOP OF YOUR BUCKET LIST?
Raising two children into compassionate, confident, self motivated — and financially independent — adults.
Business Insurance's annual Women to Watch feature recognizes women doing outstanding work in insurance, risk management, employee benefits and related fields.