We also saw some changes in our leadership team last week with Jon Turner, who was previously CEO of our MGA, Pen Underwriting, taking the helm at our Specialty division. Jon and I have worked together since 2015 and he is a fantastic pair of hands to lead this growing area of our business. John Thompson has now taken on the role of head of business development for the division, which goes from strength to strength.
This change has also enabled us to promote some of our fantastic talent from within, and Tom Downey is now leading Pen Underwriting, having been Chief Underwriting Officer for Pen since 2017.
It makes me very proud to lead such a talented group of people, both in my direct team but also the wider Gallagher 5000 strong UK team, now based in 70 offices across the country. We’ve just finished our TeamTalk sessions for the 2019 financial year - where myself and members of the UK leadership team head out on the road and take the time to visit all of our major offices to meet our colleagues. We talk about the priorities for the business, our performance, celebrate and recognise our fantastic efforts and importantly, hear the views and answer colleague questions.
We kicked off in October last year meeting our 150-strong team based in Wales, and since then have visited a further 18 offices including Glasgow, Leeds, Bournemouth, Jersey, Birmingham, Bristol, Ipswich. Our final visit was to Pune in India, where around 200 colleagues, who provide essential support to our UK business, gave us an incredibly warm welcome.
The theme of TeamTalk was ‘You Make the Difference’ and having spent this time with teams as well as regularly visiting our numerous offices, it re-iterated the enormous sense of pride I have in our business and of the breadth of skills, expertise and diversity of our people. These sessions also provide greater insight into the challenges in the different markets, sectors and clients that we serve. It also gives the UK leadership team the chance to listen to the honest and insightful feedback from our colleagues and allows us to really get an understanding of life at Gallagher. Pleasingly, the people that came along seemed to enjoy it too with 98% feeling informed and equal or better about the organisation. Thank you to everyone who came along to see us and took part.