The Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCAN)
The Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCAN) officially launched in May 2017 as the first industry-wide insurance network in the UK to promote multicultural inclusion and accelerate progression.
iCAN creates an opportunity for colleagues across the industry to initiate partnerships with existing employee resource groups (ERGs), whether they have access within their own firms or not. It provides a platform to highlight the importance of multicultural inclusion and promotes concepts of intersectionality and commonality, crucial elements of successful inclusion for any business.
From a multicultural perspective, iCAN targets three key challenges facing the insurance sector:
- Leaders - There are few leaders from culturally diverse backgrounds represented within the industry. Given the global nature of the business and diversity of our client base, it is important for organisations to recognise the importance of being able to reflect the diversity of their clients amongst their own talent. With ever greater globalisation, there is a significant opportunity for the industry to achieve greater productivity and performance through a more inclusive and diverse workforce;
- Industry Networks - Within the insurance community of carriers, brokers, MGA’s and service providers there are currently only a handful of multicultural specific ERGs. These are not connected and operate primarily in their own firms, with little or no outside ability to influence change, nor access to shared resources and networking opportunities;
- Role Models in the pipeline - The need for visible multicultural role models, at all levels from the industry will be critical to achieving change, particularly when considering the insurance sector’s difficulties in attracting and retaining talented employees from multicultural backgrounds.
The iCAN mentoring programme launches in 2018, with the aim of creating positive change for participants and their organisations and showcasing the breadth of multicultural talent in the industry.