Lockton NZ’s next CEO on priorities and plans

Lockton NZ's next CEO on priorities and plans

Lockton NZ’s next CEO on priorities and plans | Insurance Business New Zealand

Insurance News

Lockton NZ’s next CEO on priorities and plans

Promoted leader shares what’s at the top of the agenda when he takes the helm

Insurance News

Terry Gangcuangco

“It is imperative to us that we maintain our focus.”

Those were the words of Craig Buckle (pictured), the next chief executive of Lockton New Zealand, when he sat down with Insurance Business following his promotion that will take effect in 2024. For the corporate risk head and soon-to-be CEO, it’s important that he sustains what has been started at the global broker’s two-year-old branch.

“My number one priority is continuing to build on the momentum we have created,” he said. “I was one of the founding members of Lockton in New Zealand. I was part of the executive team that came together with a shared vision to bring Lockton to this country and build the business.

“We’ve all worked incredibly hard over the last two years to establish a strong platform, so we’re in an excellent position now to build upon that foundation. We all understand the business plan, strategy, and goals. From my perspective, it’s about consistently achieving our objectives and executing our strategy.”

Buckle believes that Lockton’s Kiwi unit, which began operating in September 2021, is well-prepared for what’s ahead.

The right opportunities and people   

Part of Buckle’s plan is to focus the company’s resources on what Lockton believes are the right prospects for the privately owned brokerage.

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“We’ve offered unique perspectives, distinguishing us from other firms in town,” Buckle told Insurance Business. “As long as we can maintain that differentiation, then I think we will have good representation among the client base we want to deal with. Therefore, we must stay true to our story and our model to pursue the right opportunities.

“There is danger in pursuing endeavours that may not align with our goals or the kind of customers we wish to engage with. Focussing our resources on the right opportunities is essential. In addition, people pipeline and cultural alignment are a focus for us, and something we are spending a lot of time developing to support our growth ambitions.”

A key part of the strategy, according to Buckle, is initiating meaningful conversations with prospective clients. Also, another crucial driver of success for the branch is having the right people on board and enabling them to do what they’re good at.

Buckle declared: “For me, personally, I want to make sure our people can get to work – solve problems and make decisions quickly. [The idea is to] let our people be experts, rather than me getting in the way. When our people are free to deliver on their skillsets and we have each other’s backs, good things happen.”

“It’s important to me that everyone knows the CEO personally,” he added. “Culture flows from this. Employees are not numbers at Lockton; our people are people.”

Global advantage

The Kiwi branch, meanwhile, is keen to “really leverage” Lockton’s global capabilities.

“We see potential in adapting successful strategies from the Pacific region and applying them to New Zealand,” shared Buckle, whose career started more than three decades ago after he answered a newspaper ad for an insurance broking assistant. “We have a number of unique selling points which provide us with valuable conversation starters.

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“It doesn’t have to be just around pure insurance, but any way that we can have some risk discussions with clients often leads to a broader spectrum of opportunities. As a region, we’re really looking to try and align ourselves strongly, to make sure that those positions of strength are really leveraged.”

Buckle is taking on the top post at Lockton NZ on January 1, while a new head of corporate risk will be announced in due course.

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