Welcome to the Charter Partner's Community!

Alisha Bryson, VP of Wayman Fire Protection, was referred by friend and industry peer, Anna Gavin (Fireline Corporation in Baltimore).  

Alisha attended a recent Life Safety Alliance (LSA) meeting to experience the group in action and learn more about LSA.  As a result, Wayman recently joined as a Member of LSA and our community.  

Based in Wilmington (DE) and founded in 1974, Wayman offers one-stop shopping for all fire protection and life safety needs - from design and installation of state-of-the-art alarm and sprinkler systems to existing system inspections.  Welcome!

For more info, please visit : http://www.waymanfireprotection.com.

Customer Service Training Held for Motorcoach Partners with Integrity (MPI)

On May 15th, MPI members attended an educational session at Charter Farms.  Mitch Hartman of Dale Carnegie facilitated "Attitudes for Service".  While the session focused on customer service for drivers, the learnings were applicable to all personnel in the service sector and included management tips as well.  The following topics were discussed:
  • Assessing Customer Service Attitudes to set goals for improvement
  • Incorporating the Four Drivers of Customer Service to build customer relationships
  • Applying Attitude Control Principles to manage their attitudes
  • Using conversational language to keep the interaction low pressure
Since the course limited to 25 attendees, members of MPI collaborated for a set number of employees from each company to attend.  Most responded to the post-meeting survey that the session "exceeded their expectations".  

For more information, or to suggest topics for future educational sessions, please contact Pattie Cowley.
First Global Safety Standard-ISO 45001-Not Just for Large Companies 

I recently returned from attending the American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP), formally known as the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE), annual conference in San Antonio. I was particularly interested in topics centered around safety culture.

There is a heightened focus on safety culture as this past March the first global safety standard, over four years in the making, called ISO 45001 was published. Company-wide engagement is one of the key benefits of ISO 45001. The new standard recognizes the value of worker consultation in the development of better health and safety practices and places greater emphasis on employees actively participating in the development, planning, implementation and continual improvement of the OH&S management system.

Why is this global safety standard important and what does it have to do with mid-market businesses like ours? It is  relevant because the pressure to be a demonstrably safe company continues to increase each year. This new standard will eventually creep into expectations that your largest customers have of you and your organization as they continue to enforce safety through the supply chain.

ISO 45001 covers a spectrum of safety expectations but has an emphasis on three areas, 1) that health and safety are integrated part of the overall business strategy rather than a bolt on activity, 2) leadership's responsibility for safety, and 3) the engagement, participation and consultation of workers in all things safety related. Although the largest global companies will be the early adopters of ISO 45001, it is attainable by companies of any size as it is designed to be implemented proportionately, allowing small companies the opportunity to meet the standard.

Compliance and meeting legal requirements is obviously still very important, but the real opportunity for sustainable change and improvement in safety lies in the attitude and company culture rather than procedures, checklist, and documents. One definition of culture is the unconscious set of standards by which the vast majority of decisions are made. Culture drives what people do most of the time, especially when you have to respond quickly. Culture drives most behavior in the workplace and in our lives, it is automatic, you don't have to think about it. This is why a strong culture can have such a dramatic impact on safety. I would argue that smaller companies have an advantage in that they can nurture and improve company culture much faster and more precisely than large organizations. This is where the biggest benefit to safety improvement resides.

I see ISO 45001 as a proactive step to setting a safety standard that will meet and likely exceed your customers expectation of a safe organization. The journey alone will make your company better as you can follow the principles of ISO 45001 but not go through the official certification process. Your company can make a self determination or declaration of compliance and be prepared to demonstrate. I would like to see the conversation with your customers regarding safety shift from a checklist and observation of a higher than permitted workers comp mod to a sustainable commitment to safety that could be demonstrated by efforts to meet the ISO 45001 standards.

ISO 45001 has at its core an engaged and participating workforce empowered and supported by leadership. By the way, the benefits of an engaged workforce don't stop at safety......but it's certainly a great place to start.

For more information, please contact Glen Welch.

Stay-At-Work Program Presented By PMA Management Corporation

On May 22nd, a repeat presentation of the Stay-At-Work Program, originally held in February, occurred.  We thanks PMA Management Corp. experts Jim Rhoads and Susan Stevens for bringing this a one-hour education session delivered via the web to our Members.  

The program reviewed the following:
  • Review the importance of management's involvement in the Stay-at-Work Program (SAW)
  • The establishment of a Stay-at-Work program is the next phase in successfully managing your workers' compensation costs
  • Discuss the steps in developing and implementing a Stay-at-Work program and selecting a Stay-at-Work Coordinator
  • Participants' roles and responsibilities and how to effectively communicate the program to your staff
The participants received great information to take back to their organizations, including a Stay-At-Work planning guide.  

If you were unable to attend but would like a planning guide, please 
email Pattie Cowley.
Managing Your Cyber Risk

For years we worried about the risk of someone breaking into our home while away on that special yearly trip with our loved ones.  While many of us kept a modest amount of valuable assets at home, such as jewelry and cash, we also worried about losing those precious electrical appliances that enhanced our quality of life, such as the stereo system or the TV set.  But times changed, and our collective concern of residential burglaries gradually faded away.  

Why?  Well, perhaps we should ask a burglar-turned-hacker professional thief.  Likely, his or her answer would sound like this: Why bother through all the hassle of breaking into your house to steal your Blue Ray system, when I can buy one for the price of a lunch at your local Panera?  I would rather steal your financial assets while sipping a Margarita in front of an emerald green seascape in some distant corner of the globe.

Cyber crimes are on the rise and rapidly becoming the number one threat for most organizations, regardless of size, operational nature or location.  This cost to uninsured businesses are consistently rising every year.  According the NetDiligence's latest Cyber Claims Study, from 2014-2017 the average cost of a cyber attack for small and medium-sized businesses was $879,000 to recover from a data breach due to damage to the system or theft of data.  Additionally, similar sized businesses incurred an average of $955,429 in lost business, mostly from existing clients.  The primary forms of cyber crimes included unauthorized access databases, cyber extortion, data theft and destruction, and transmission of viruses or malicious codes.

Although having effective loss control measures in place is critically important, for most businesses purchasing some form of financial protection is an integral mechanism of a sound risk management strategy to manage the ever-evolving Cyber risk exposure.  Transferring the risk of financial losses from these expensive and disrupting events to an insurer through the purchase of a Cyber Liability policy may ultimately prove the best option for the average small-medium size company.

We would like to encourage all members to count on Charter Partners' assistance in managing this relatively new and yet costly risk exposure.

For more information, please contact Jaime Tatosian at our office.
Captive Industry News
The State of Washington Insurance Commissioner recently issued a cease and desist order against an Arizona pure captive owned by Microsoft.  

The order alleges that the captive violated Washington law by failing to obtain a license to do business in the state, and by failing to pay substantial premium taxes.  This has been big news in the captive insurance world, but- at least based on the facts as set out in the trade press- not any kind of surprise.
Insurance companies, including captives wherever they're organized, have to obtain an insurance license in every state in which they do business unless they fit certain limited exceptions.  Because getting a license is a significant cost and administrative burden (it's literally feet of paper to be filed in some states), most captives do business  by not ever writing insurance outside their state of domicile and instead "reinsure" (basically, insurance for insurers) a traditional, fully licensed insurer already spreading the costs of licensing over other parts of its business.  These so-called "fronting" arrangements remove the burden of compliance from the captive because the reinsurance the captive provides the front fits one of the exceptions to licensure. 
But Microsoft's captive doesn't appear to have used a fronting arrangement.  To make matters worse, Washington is one of just a few states lacking other exceptions to licensure which might have applied.   It remains too soon to tell whether Microsoft did anything wrong.  It's possible that Washington lacks the authority to regulate the captive's activities on constitutional or other grounds.  In the meantime, many captives are reconsidering their approach to regulatory compliance and this may result in some changes.  

Group programs like Cooperative Partnership which partner with reputable, regulated fronting partners like PMA have nothing to fear from regulators and can watch this unfold from the sidelines. 

Rusty Young, Attorney for CPIC

The Annual Meeting of Members will be held Thursday, June 21st at 2:00PM via teleconference.

The purposes  of the meeting are for the Members to discuss the operations of the company and to elect the company's Board of Directors for the ensuing year.  

The Annual Meeting of the Board of Directors will be held Monday, August 6th in Manchester, VT.  

The same week, Charter Partners will travel to Burlington, VT to attend the Vermont Captive Insurance Association (VCIA) Conference.

For more information, please contact Pattie Cowley
Charter Partners USA, Inc. | 610-438-3535 | www.charterpartners.com