Opinion | Are Emotions Even Allowed in Insurance?

By: | February 25, 2020

Dan Reynolds is editor-in-chief of Risk & Insurance. He can be reached at [email protected].

The use of the word “emotional” by an R&I contributor the other day got me thinking.

Although well-acquainted with the topic in our personal lives, in hopefully positive and enriching ways, we seldom hear the word used in a business or workplace context.

“Keeping one’s emotions in check” and that sort of thing is a kind of mantra that we repeat to ourselves so that we don’t escalate conflict with a co-worker or client.

“So and so got ‘emotional’ in that meeting,” which in our corporate code of stigma, means “They lost it, points off for not keeping control.”

As we consider reputational resilience and risk management, perhaps we need to find a new way of talking about and expressing emotions so that they aren’t deal or reputation breakers.

Because what is the alternative? Secrecy and a lack of transparency is what I posit.

If I can’t tell my audience how I’m feeling in any context, how honest, really, is the communication?

Some may mock me for the following, but here goes. If men could feel more comfortable talking about their feelings in a non-aggressive manner, might we see less covert predatory behavior?

If women felt more empowered to share their emotions without being branded harpies by misogynists, might they not be freer to also express their talent and intellect?

Emotions can be tough. Hard conversations can be challenging.

But we are all the richer for them if they are handled constructively and without stigma. &

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