Under the Spotlight – Luke Carroll

Title… Consultant

Organisation… Towers Watson

My interesting/quirky hobbies… Many a person has tried and failed to stump me in the game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon

My favourite energetic pursuit… Snowboarding. It used to be playing rugby league but a few years ago I thought I should find one that didn’t end up with me turning up to work with black eyes and broken noses

The sport I most like to watch… Rugby League

The last book I read… The Word & Void by Terry Brooks

My favourite artist/album/film… Star Wars (the original one – who decided it would be a good idea to have Greedo shoot first?)

The person I’d most like to cook for… If this is to be a nice meal with some effort – I’d say my wife

What gets my goat… People being inconsiderate to others around themLuke-Carroll-snowboarding-in-Japan

I’d like to be brave enough to… Run a marathon

In my life I’m planning to change… My sleeping patterns

Not many people know this but I… Like shopping for homewares (think the kitchen utensils section of Ikea)

Four words that sum me up… Laid-back, meticulous, hard-working, loyal

What I wanted to be when I grew up… When I was little, probably a Jedi Knight. In high school I romanticised about becoming an astronaut

Why and how I became an actuary… My high school careers advisor introduced me to it. I discovered it was notoriously difficult so thought it would be a good challenge

Where I studied to become an actuary and qualifications obtained… University of New South Wales BCom (Actuarial Studies), FIAA

My work history… I started as a graduate at Towers Watson 11 years ago. I have spent that time in the retirement benefits practice, providing advice to both superannuation fund trustees and employer sponsors on all aspects of managing their funds

What I find most interesting about my current role… Working with clients to provide them with meaningful information to assist them in making real business decisions

My role’s greatest challenges… Coming to terms with the massive increases in regulation in the superannuation industry

Who has been the biggest influence on my career (and why)… From a consulting point of view, both Brad Jeffrey (Towers Watson Director, Superannuation Services) and Phil Patterson (Senior Consultant) have taught me a great deal about fostering client relationships and maintaining trust

My proudest career achievement to date is… Qualifying as an actuary

10 years from now, I will be… Probably helping kids with school homework, hoping I still remember the basics

Why I’m proud to be an actuary… I believe it is a well-respected profession that combines a number of skillsets for the benefit of clients or the greater population. That, and whenever I tell anyone I’m an actuary I either get a blank stare or an “Oh wow!”

The most valuable skill an actuary can possess is… The instinct to ask “why?”

At least once in their life, every actuary should… Spend some time doing something completely unrelated to numbers. Say, visit the Sistine Chapel and (if you can get a seat) just sit and stare…

My best advice for younger actuaries… Don’t be so afraid of making mistakes that it holds you back from attempting something new. Jump in at the deep end – that’s how you’ll learn

If I could travel back in time I would… Try not to bump into my parents, unless I had a DeLorean and clock tower handy

If I win the lottery, I would… Take extended time off to see the world and boringly, probably buy a house

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