Mehran recently gathered the company to discuss the great achievements we’ve accomplished and some changes that will help us keep the wins coming.
Mehran stressed that most of us will see no change in our current reporting relationships and team structures — “keep doing the great work you’re doing,” he said, “without distractions.”
Read the “Message from Mehran” that outlines the changes for more information.
You have heard me say successful organizations do not stand still. They evolve with the changing times and with the changing needs of the business—to reinvent/reposition themselves for what they see ahead of them. As announced earlier, I am excited for the following organizational changes that I believe will position us for the next chapter of excellence in the relentless pursuit of our vision and mission.
Achim Schwetlick will lead CIG
I have asked Achim Schwetlick, EVP & Chief Marketing Officer, to lead our Customer Innovation Group (CIG). Since joining National Life in 2016, Achim has led our Business Innovation Group (BIG) and during that time has contributed to our success in product innovation, in-force management, marketing, and business transformation, all while navigating significant changes in the regulatory environment. Achim is one of our strongest strategic thinkers. He takes with him to CIG his experiences from BIG, which will be valuable in a number of strategic projects that are critical to the future state of our Operations organization.
I have had the pleasure of working with CIG leadership closely for the past two years and am grateful for what I have learned. Together we have made great progress within Operations, especially in the area of leadership development. Achim will partner with Bill and Angela to take it to the next level.
Realignment of BIG
Given Achim’s new responsibilities, the following realignment of BIG teams will take effect over the next week. The Marketing team, led by Darlene Flagg, will be renamed to Marketing & Branding and will include Marketing, Advanced Markets, Digital Platforms, and Recognition & Conferences. This will facilitate a tighter alignment with Distribution and more targeted support for the field across these teams. Darlene will report to me.
The Communications and Community Relations team will be led by Beth Rusnock and will report to Michael Veilleux in the People Center.
A new Strategy, Information and Technology Group
Our Strategy and Business Transformation team will join a newly created Strategy, Information & Technology Group reporting to Nimesh Mehta. In a world with ever-faster technological advances, this combination will closely link data with predictive analytics and technology with strategic goals for our businesses. Elizabeth and her team will continue to be the glue connecting different business disciplines in assessment of business opportunities.
Life & Annuity Solutions will join COO Group
Four years ago, we created the Office of the Chief Operating Officer that is led by Bob Cotton. This group is focused on the two key ingredients for achieving our long-term vision of two million clients: Capital and Performance. We often refer to it as our financial performance “engine.” It currently includes Finance, Risk, Investments, Capital Management and Audit.
I am pleased to announce that the L&A Solutions team, led by Ata Azarshahi, which includes product development, in-force management and illustrations, will now join the COO Group as the last piece of the puzzle for financial performance and innovation. Ata will report to Bob with respect to L&A Solutions while maintaining a dual reporting line to Matt Frazee with respect to ESI, our Broker/Dealer.
Capital Management, led by Greg Mateja, will move over to Finance and continue to encompass Capital Management, Treasury Operations, and Reinsurance Administration. Greg will report to Eric Sandberg.
Setting the table for future success
Given the strategic direction of our organization and where I see our future opportunities, I believe that this alignment places the right leaders at the right place at the right time. At the same time, I also expect the short-term impact on most of you and the way we conduct our business to be limited, allowing us to continue to focus on our 2022 goals.
Thanks for all you do on our journey to bringing peace of mind to two million delighted clients.