A year down, one to go: the IIB’s Ian Burnett reflects on his presidency

Education and networking. These have been the focuses of the Insurance Institute of the Border (IIB) during the first year of president Ian Burnett’s tenure – and the second year promises more of that. 

Ian Burnett.
Ian Burnett.

“The insurance industry continues to evolve and we need to change with it. Our systems, our tech, but above all our mindsets, need to change. The only constant we have is change,” quips Ian.

A lot has happened in the first of his two-year tenure as IIB president (not least him moving to Cardinal), Ian continues.

“As an insurance institute council, our goal is to serve our members and the main area we have been able to do that is in the educational sphere. During the past year we hosted nine events that enabled our members to acquire CPD hours for their respective accreditations.

“We have a very fired up education officer and understudy, who are doing amazing things in this space,” he says, expressing his good fortune at being part of “a fantastic team of talented professionals, all passionate about our local industry”. 

“Our greatest achievement this year, besides bolstering our technology for use at events, was the running of our very first Insurance Challenge. Eleven Challengers, 35 years old and under, started the challenge, which fell over five separate events with tasks attached to each one.

“Unfortunately, two Challengers fell out for personal/work pressure-related issues, but at our AGM on 11 April, we were able to present the nine remaining challengers with their prizes. The winner will be accompanying myself to the IISA Conference this year as the prize,” says Ian.

On a more personal note, Ian represented his institute on a number of occasions, including at the IISA AIE Conference at Sun City, the IIEC annual dinner in Port Elizabeth and the IIG annual dinner in Johannesburg.

“For me personally, the IIB annual dinner is a highlight and takes up a lot of available free time when the organisation proper gets under way. I was very fortunate to be able to tap into the expertise of fellow council members with many years’ experience in this particular event. All in all it was a fantastic evening at ‘A Wild Coast Wander’.

“I also managed to be involved with two multi-day fundraising cycle events in November and March, that together helped raise over R400 000 for various charity organisations.”

Sadly, the IIB also bade farewell to one of its stalwarts, Des Mildenhall, who passed away earlier this year following an illness. “Des was a mentor in my early part of my insurance career, who was always able to come up with the right solution to any problem and smile about it,” says Ian.

For 2019, “we set some really high standards in our educational and social events, so I would like to see that continue”, states Ian.

“I am also hoping to see the young council members flourishing in their respective roles, and I continue to encourage them to do so. No one wants to come to events and just hear my voice and see my bald head!”

Finally, Ian thanks Fulcrum for its support of the IIB, saying, “I would like to say a BIG thank-you to Fulcrum for their ongoing and generous support of the IIB and me personally, in my capacity as president.”