“One of the key components of our culture deck is we only hire top performers and we are militant about making sure we do”, says Max.
The Texas-based SVP of Underwriting & Reinsurance shares his journey from traditional insurance to transforming the world of landlord insurance and building a high-performing team at Steadily.
“The task of building something from nothing was very cool and also very challenging”, as Max talks about how the Steadily team has grown from working out of a 2-bedroom house to a headcount of 70 with offices in Austin and Kansas City.
“It was a typical start-up. We had very close interactions with our engineers and leadership team. We were all within 20ft of each other. The atmosphere is actually still pretty similar.”
Max explains how Steadily is marketing through direct to consumer, independent agencies and partnerships with property management companies to transform landlord insurance.
“Where homeowners insurance is today, there’s been a lot of progress over the last 5-10 years. Landlord insurance has not caught up. We have focussed on building the proprietary tech to make it much easier to get an accurate quote in seconds, not days.
A Lot of carriers don’t understand the nuances of the market. There are 6-12 different customers that need different solutions.”
Max emphasises the biggest challenge to scaling is people and hiring the best of the best.
“Our hiring practices reflect that. It’s challenging to find those top tier candidates, then to convince them to join us”, as Max goes on to share growth plans for the next years and the company’s cultural values.
“We are huge on providing context for employees and not controlling outcomes.”
Max talks through the value people with an insurance background bring to the team and shares the advice he’d give to insurtech leader, stating, “It’s going to take the right people with the right mentality, the right knowledge. That’s critical.”
For anyone looking to transition in to insurtech, Max says, “Roll the dice. I know we’re in an industry some would say is risk averse. It doesn’t mean you have to be risk averse in your career.”
The Insurance Coffee House Podcast is hosted by Nick Hoadley, CEO, Insurance Search, the Executive Search Consultancy for growing Insurance and Insurtech businesses across the globe.