Actuaries Institute 2017 President Jenny Lyon, outlines her career journey and passion for people in the profession, as well as key priority areas for her year as President.
I am looking forward to my year representing all members of the Actuaries Institute as President.
One of the key things I have learned as a member of Council, has been that there is a delicate balance between the role of steward of the profession for the future and the interests of current members.
Many of us have benefited from the work of others and the reputation of the actuarial brand. I see a large part of my role as President to be a brand ambassador for actuaries but I can’t do it alone, and I hope you will join me in taking on that role personally.
For those of you who don’t know me, here is a brief history. At age 10 I came to live in North West Australia (Dampier) for two years - quite a change from my earlier years in North East England.
I loved Australia – the big blue sky seemed to offer endless opportunity - and I vowed to return.
With a maths degree in hand I arrived in Sydney and started the actuarial exams while working at AMP and later Towers Perrin in superannuation and life insurance. From there, much of my career has focused on recruitment and career management for actuaries, along with small business management with QED Actuarial and now SKL.
I have been closely involved with the Institute for many years including time as Editor of the Actuaries Magazine (in print), Chair of the CPD Committee, Chair of the Leadership Committee and the last three years on Council.
My work in recruitment has allowed me to observe changes in the working environment, education and professional expectations of actuaries. I have seen that those actuaries who can develop strong communication, influencing and leadership skills, on top of their technical qualifications, are well positioned for their career and to make a significant contribution, to business, and society. Throughout this year I will be focused on emphasising the importance of leadership, influencing and communication skills among actuaries.
Key items that I hope to achieve include:
- increasing engagement with younger actuaries and encouraging them to help forge the future of the profession;
- celebrating the diverse talent pool in our profession including the strategic advantage we have in having more than 38% of members (and 58% of students) who speak an Asian language;
- a clear and practical plan for the implementation of the education review; and
- a review of our international activities to ensure we are being accountable, increasing our influence, and making the best use of our limited resources.
Council and HQ will, of course, continue to work closely together on the 2015-2017 Strategic Plan to ensure targets are met and both the profession and the Institute are well positioned for 2018 and beyond.
I look forward to meeting many of you during the year and would welcome feedback on any aspect of the work of the Institute and the profession.
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