International business experience and a broad range of skills: those are the assets businesses want in employees. Organizations like Argo Group that offer secondments – internationally or locally – give workers the chance to develop new capabilities for a global marketplace.
What is a secondment?
A secondment is a temporary position in which you work in a different department or area within your organization to fill in for someone or to add your skills where they’re needed for a short time. Secondments can be good for employers: Through these assignments, they can boost interconnections between employees and departments. But secondments can be good for your career, too.
Here are four solid reasons (with a word or two from young Argo Group employees who have been there, learned that) why it’s good to work for a company that offers secondments:
You get to move around – without moving on.
Secondments are great if you want to try a different job without having to quit working for your employer. You can stick with the workplace you love while you hone in on the job you love, too. That’s one of the reasons why Samuel Redding applied for a secondment. He’s an actuarial analyst in pricing at ArgoGlobal in London – on his way to work in Argo Group US’s Denver office. “I felt I was ready for a change and a new challenge, but I was satisfied working for Argo as a company,” he says. “The opportunity for a transfer means I will gain new experience without having to move to a different organization.”
You learn and grow.
Whether you’re moving to a different department overseas or down the hall, you get the chance to learn new skills and an innovative way of thinking. You might even get to learn a different language. You could expand your knowledge of a different culture, too. And you’ll learn about yourself. For instance, you might discover your passion is data analysis, though you started in sales. All that learning makes you more flexible and adaptable – key attributes in nearly every workplace. Shannon Hippeard is developing her adaptability on secondment. A business analyst with Argo Group US, she took an 18-month assignment to work at ArgoGlobal in London. “I came from a casualty background, so the opportunity for me was to learn about underwriting from a global perspective,” she says.
You build your professional network.
The more people you work with and get to know, the more you’ll learn. And the better off you’ll be, career-wise. Daniela De Leon Pacheco used to work in Argo Group US’s San Antonio office, but this internal auditor has been seconded to ArgoGlobal in London, where she’s building a formidable professional network. “This business is housed under one roof so it’s easier to build relationships,” she says. “You eliminate the need for emails and phone calls, making professional networking a natural extension of face-to- face interactions. In my role, client satisfaction and management are very important. Being able to interact with not only peers but also heads of department is essential.”
You learn how business really works.
Many international organizations struggle to instill a sense of global-mindedness across their various operations. Working abroad, you come to appreciate the interconnections between different parts of the company. That’s a big benefit for employers, which means it’s a competitive advantage for you. Shannon Hippeard agrees. “The secondment opened my eyes to… how our offices in other parts of the world – such as in Dubai, across Europe and at Lloyd’s – work,” she says.
Get up and grow
Secondments could be the key to your professional and personal growth. That’s the case for Samuel, Shannon and Daniela – and many other millennials at Argo Group. Want to join them? See Argo’s careers page for opportunities. Follow #CareerTrifecta on Twitter for more insurance career advice.