My boss’s boss called me to his office. Our surety bond division had a problem—apparently, the bond division had heaped losses on every reinsurer in the world. Now the division couldn’t get the reinsurance required to continue in business.
I was still just an aspiring actuary at that time, full of confidence about all the new and interesting things I was learning. But I knew nothing about surety bonds and even less about reinsurance!
I explained to the Division Financial Officer that I was certainly willing to help with the problem, but I was doubtful of my skills and experience in the troublesome areas. He said confidently, “You know all you need to know to help them. Get down there and see what you can do.”
I set about applying my meager skillset to the problem at hand. Using what I did know about the fundamentals of insurance and finance, I worked with the surety executives to craft a proposal that the wounded reinsurers accepted. The surety bond business could carry on!