Anthony Day, CEO of Commercial Insurance at Suncorp Group has been in the industry for more than 33 years, working in commercial and personal insurance. He started with a cadetship at Edward Lumley & Sons before moving to Chubb Insurance where he launched the company’s high-end home owners’ product into the Australian market. He then joined Zurich Financial Services in 1999. He worked there until 2007 and joined Suncorp the following year, before being appointed to his current position in October 2009.

When Anthony became part of the Suncorp Group, the company had just gone through the acquisition of Promina, so he set about integrating the business and putting together a strategy for long-term growth and sustainable returns. “My focus was first to look at the organisational design of the business and ensure the organisational design was right. Being a large-scale player, I’ve had a true belief that a functional model was the way that we should organise ourselves, and that’s aggregating like functions. So rather than do it on a brand basis or a product basis, we do it on a functional basis, and that’s the functions of underwriting, claims, distribution, and so on.

“The commercial insurance market is pretty fragmented, you need to be able to aggregate expertise and that’s really what I was about. That was probably the first change we made in the business and we drove that pretty hard. Plus we needed to ensure we got the right leadership team in to drive the results that we wanted. Secondly, having been in a functional model, we wanted to ensure that we worked across those functions because you need to rely on each other, so a lot was around teamwork, and I spent a lot of time focusing on the teamwork of my team and of each of those functions, so that they understood the customer model, but worked effectively together. We spent a lot of time on that.”