The global pandemic of Corona Virus changed the way we live our lives. It changed the way we communicate, learn and even do our business. I saw that the pandemic and the following lockdown ended up being a great time for many micro-businesses to grow, and individuals to upskill and start earning. Women especially chose to use this time to learn and be independent.
I know a few who are thinking about learning something new and starting their business or becoming freelancers. I am showcasing a few women who have achieved this and would like to guide other women in doing so.
Today I am featuring Beena Doshi, a Risk Management Consultant who chose this career after taking a break from her corporate career. Today she is helping many handle their insurance portfolio while managing her house
Tell us about your background and experience.
I am an Engineering graduate and have worked with various Telecom companies , like BPL (Vodafone now) , Idea , Reliance Communications and Tata Communications. I took a sabbatical to take care of my daughters. When they became independent, I started afresh.
How did you come across this career opportunity?
A) My family has been in the Finance Business since the last 20 years and we had covered almost everything except Insurance. When I decided to work, I thought of focusing on this sector and introduce and expand the Insurance business.
What kind of experience do women need to make a career in insurance?
A) Well, There’s no experience required to get into this field. The Insurance companies provide the necessary training and certifications which helps you equip yourself with the ropes of Insurance business.
How can one become an Insurance agent?
A) Firstly, you need to clear an online exam conducted by IRDA (Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India). Once the exam is cleared, you get the Advisor code to conduct the Insurance Business. One person can have the License/Code for One Life, One General, and One Health insurance on his/her name.
What kind of remunerations can one expect?
A) Just like any other Business, Remunerations are directly proportional to the amount of hard work that one puts in.
Is this something that Women can do while managing home/staying at home?
A) Yes , this is definitely something one can do while managing home/staying at home. All you need is good data connectivity to work from home.
How has Covid-19 impacted your business schedule?
A) We initially thought the business would suffer. But this Industry is so adaptable, that within 48 hrs everything was online right from client meeting to onboarding, Payment and Policy issuance. Now there is no form filling at all.
Can Women get into the Insurance business in the current times of lockdown?
A) Yes, one can apply for the Insurance Business now and start the preparation. The online exams are on hold from IRDA. Mostly, exams will be conducted somewhere in June 2020. So, this is a great time for those interested, to start the groundwork. You can learn about the Insurance concepts now and once the exam centers open, can appear for the exams and get the advisor code.
What would be your advice to women looking to start their business and be independent in today’s time?
A) Insurance business has tremendous growth potential in India. It is highly under penetrated. Insurance never got the importance that it should get ideally. There is a misconception that women cannot understand finance, it is time to break that barrier and become financially independent while helping others plan their life finances.
If you need advice, do connect with me on firstname.lastname@example.org and I would be happy to help.
For the uninitiated, here is a quick synopsis of what is Insurance and why is it necessary
Definition of Insurance
It is a contract between the insured and the insurance company, whereby the insured’s financial risk is covered by the insurance company. So effectively, one passes on the risk to the insurance company and they charge a nominal sum of money for taking that risk which is called Insurance Premium.
Why is Insurance necessary?
We know life is full of uncertainties. Like the COVID pandemic brought the world to a standstill, an unexpected event can bring our life to a grinding halt. It is important that we prepare for such uncertainties and the best way to do that is via Insurance. The most important types of insurance that one must have is Term Life Insurance, Medical Insurance, Accidental/Disability Insurance & Critical Illness Cover.
After hearing Beena’s story the one thing I realized was – it is never too late to start afresh. A career in Insurance and finance is possible without a formal degree in Finance. So, leave the excuses behind and start your journey in finance today.