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Having fun and enjoying her work while remaining professional is the key balance that Beatriz Valenti brings to her role as head of commercial insurance for Zurich Insurance Group Ltd. in Spain.
Joining a profession with a perception of being filled with gray-suited older men, Ms. Valenti has been determined to bring color to the profession. “Sometimes there was the idea that you were not serious if you were wearing bright colors or having fun,” she said, “but the opposite is true. I am very serious about my work, but I am not going to change my personality to fit in, when it is my personality that brings results.”
She shares this message with people she mentors as part of Zurich’s Connect program, in which 25 women from across the globe are connected to more senior role models.
And this is something that James Shea, CEO commercial insurance, Zurich Insurance Group, believes has helped build the Spanish business.
“In 2020 Bea had achieved the financial goals set out for the business in Spain,” he said. “In March of this year the world was struck with unprecedented challenges, and Spain was one of the countries impacted the hardest. Bea’s leadership in the market and commitment to her people not only steered her team and business through the most challenging times we can remember but she served internally as an example across the organization of the power of communication and engagement.”
Ms. Valenti has been back in Spain for the past two years, after a spell in the London office — a city she first visited through a scholarship to help improve her English when she worked at Marsh Ltd., before she joined Zurich’s professional indemnity and financial lines team in 2010.
Outside of work, Ms. Valenti has a passion for outdoor activities — which she said is fortunate given that she is the mother of three boys.
COVID-19 has affected their ability to be outside for months of this year but she believes “it has been a giant reminder that, as humans, we need interaction with others. The future may be a more flexible work environment, but it will also include greater interaction.”