Kickstart Scheme transformational for both Kickstart and broker

“Life isn’t always about how much money you make or how big your business is, sometimes it’s about giving back,” says Darren Paterson, Director at Paterson Insurance Brokers, one of the 24 Members taking part in our Kickstart initiative.

“There are young people out there that want to work but they maybe don’t have the confidence or courage to put themselves out there. When the Kickstart scheme came along, we felt it could be a nice opportunity to help someone and give them a career,” adds Darren.

That someone is Aimée Young. She joined Paterson Insurance Brokers in April as an Administration Assistant.

“It’s really nice to see someone find themselves in that five-month journey.”

“Her CV was superb; she was a high achiever at school and college,” says Darren. “However, she was nervous in the interview, but we saw something in her. From the day she joined, week by week we’ve seen a very shy young woman grow into someone who is grabbing opportunities with both hands.

“It’s really nice to see someone find themselves in that five-month journey. I can’t speak more highly of her.”

“Being surrounded by supportive people who not only have experience but are willing to help me develop, it’s given me a sense of purpose. It’s put me in a more positive mindset overall.”

For Aimée, the whole experience has been transformational. She explains, “Before the interview, I was terrified and didn’t know what to expect. I was put at ease the second I sat down. When I first got the job, it was a lot to adjust to. With support from the team, who were willing to answer my questions and let me shadow them, I’ve been able to adjust and grow in the role.

“I’m much more confident in both my work and in myself generally. I’m now able to speak to people and do complex tasks with ease. I feel like it’s been good for not only my anxiety but for my mental wellbeing as a whole. Being surrounded by supportive people who not only have experience but are willing to help me develop, it’s given me a sense of purpose. It’s put me in a more positive mindset overall.”

Throughout their journey, around 30 ‘Kickstarts’ have been supported by Bravo Networks’ HR Consultancy and Learning and Development teams.

“The support that Bravo Networks provided also made us look more professional. We’re a relatively small business but when you’re part of a network, it adds strength, and she could see that.”

Darren adds, “Bravo Networks provided an induction plan for the new starters, with basic training in the first couple of weeks to get them used to the environment they were going to be working in. It gave Aimée structure and took the load off for us as a business.

“The support that Bravo Networks provided also made us look more professional. We’re a relatively small business but when you’re part of a network, it adds strength, and she could see that.”

“We need to take the chance on young people and provide them with an environment that is supportive, as well as giving them hands on experience. It’s what the industry needs.”

Darren believes it is time for small brokerages to take the risk and take on young people to foster the next generation of brokers.

He says, “We need to take the chance on young people and provide them with an environment that is supportive, as well as giving them hands on experience. It’s what the industry needs. A lot of people say they fell into insurance, which is a shame. I’ve had a long career in the industry, it’s ticked all the boxes for me – interacting with people, management and progression.

“We need to bring young people through, train them and give them a career. It’s makes business sense because you’ll have people who are not only skilled in their jobs, but they’ll be trained in the way you want your business to be run. So, they’ll fit naturally into your culture.”

“I’d absolutely recommend Kickstart.”

“Kickstart has been a lovely scheme,” Darren concludes. “It should hopefully have engaged more people to take the risk of taking on young people, as they’re not bearing that cost. I’d absolutely recommend Kickstart. For anyone thinking of doing it, I’d say make sure everyone in your business is committed to helping that individual, as they all play their part in making them feel part of your team.”

Off the back of the Kickstart initiative, Aimée has been offered a permanent position at Paterson Insurance Brokers and will be joining our next apprenticeship cohort in November.

Darren’s goal is to create a training academy within Paterson Insurance Brokers to give young people a break and start a career in insurance.

There’s still time to sign up for the Kickstart Scheme. The Government is offering six months of funding for 16-to-24-year-olds on Universal Credit who start a job before 31st December 2021, until 30th June 2022.

Members, if you’re interested in being part of Bravo Networks Kickstart Initiative, please speak to the HR Consultancy team or your BDM.

Not a Member? To discover more about our flexible broker proposition, call Alexa Owen on 07483 929046 or email her at alexa.owen@bravo-group.co.uk

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