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Making the Math Work: Inside the Head of CFO Steve Berk

Posted by Erin Quigley, Corporate Communications Director on February 29, 2016 at 10:00 AM
Making the Math Work: Inside the Head of CFO Steve Berk

Marsh & McLennan Agency Western Region CFO, Steve Berk, has spent the last three decades (and counting) with the same company. If words like “predictable” or “uneventful” come to mind when you hear about his long-term tenure with the firm, you don’t know Steve very well. We recently sat down with him to discuss his CFO journey, an unexpected detour into sales, and what he sees as the most important business opportunities CFOs need to navigate today.

After starting his career as a CPA with Deloitte & Touche, Steve joined Marsh where he held various finance roles, ultimately becoming Western Regional CFO in 1992. He enjoyed his years in finance but after the heartbreaking loss of a number of his colleagues in the World Trade Center in 2001 and growing weary of ongoing travel, in 2005, Steve declared a need for a change.

Unwilling to lose a dynamic leader, Marsh asked Steve to run the sales division in Portland. The request seemed unconventional at first, but with his experience as CFO, Steve knew exactly what kept prospects up at night. With his CFO insider knowledge and extroverted personality, Steve proved to be the perfect candidate to reenergize sales. Soon, Steve was made head of sales for Marsh’s Western Region.

Fast forward to Steve’s relocation to San Diego in 2009, his career would soon come full circle. In 2014, Marsh & McLennan Agency acquired Barney & Barney and folded in much of Steve’s Marsh office a year later. With CEO Paul Hering and COO/President Hal Dunning’s roles expanding, Steve was the perfect addition to the team – once again as CFO.

We sat down with Steve to get some insight on his experience as CFO.

How does your sales experience help you in your role as CFO?

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Topics: Inside B&B, Associate Spotlight, Culture

Do you LOVE what you do?

Posted by Debbie Chelberg, Director of Human Resources on February 11, 2016 at 2:30 PM
Do you LOVE what you do?

We love Insurance SM Rectangle-02.jpgThis Sunday millions of people will be making romantic gestures with roses and chocolates to express their love and fidelity to their Valentine. At Marsh & McLennan Agency, we’ve only had eyes for insurance for over a century.

To celebrate Valentine’s Day we asked some of our more passionate associates to tell us what keeps the spark alive when it comes to loving insurance.

"I LOVE to help my clients make their employees happy. Our impact starts with the employer and resonates all the way through the employees and their families. It’s an amazing feeling to be able to provide peace of mind and expertise to so many." - Jaymee Kelso, Client Manager II, Employee Benefits Orange County

"When my clients arrive to work each day, what is top of mind for them…Business Insurance? I certainly hope not! Running and growing a business requires their full attention. Insurance and risk management is my job. I love helping them do theirs." – Kevin Mirsky, Principal, Property + Casualty San Francisco

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Topics: Culture, Inside MMA

Associate Spotlight: Jaymee Kelso

Posted by Daniela Posada, Corporate Recruiter on May 27, 2014 at 10:00 AM
Associate Spotlight: Jaymee Kelso

Like many associates here at Marsh & McLennan Agency, Jaymee was referred to her position by a former colleague, who is now a MMA principal. After working in the Property & Casualty side for many years, Jaymee made the move to Employee Benefits in 2006. Unlike most, Jaymee has seen both sides, but found her passion working with clients in the Employee Benefits Division.

Growth & Opportunity

“The growth opportunity attracted me to Marsh & McLennan Agency”. With MMA's Premier Partnership with Brandman University, Jaymee was able to take advantage of the opportunity and go back to school for her Master’s Degree in business.  “I have always played with the thought of going back to school for my Master’s Degree but financially could not take on the risk.  When the opportunity came knocking at my door as an employee at MMA, I knew I could not pass it up.  I will be graduating in the Fall of 2015 with my MBA degree with an emphasis and certificate in Organizational Leadership.”

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Topics: Associate Spotlight, Culture

The Power of Barney & Barney + MMA

Posted by Paul Hering, CEO, West Region on May 12, 2014 at 10:00 AM
The Power of Barney & Barney + MMA

In February, Barney & Barney joined the Marsh & McLennan Agency (MMA) family because we saw a unique opportunity to better serve our 3 C’: clients, colleagues and community.

After just two and a half months, we are pleased to announce that we have already started to see the benefits of our new venture exemplified in our ability to deliver greater value for our clients and communities, and create more opportunity for our associates.

Some recent examples:

  • We have access to new resources through MMA, which we’re now providing to clients.
  • We are sharing our own capabilities and offerings with MMA affiliates, helping even more employers across the country and broadening our reach.
  • MMA colleagues from around the country are sharing best practices. The exchange of ideas is improving the way the entire organization does business.
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Topics: Culture

Sustainability Pays Off

Posted by Erin Quigley, Corporate Communications Director on May 2, 2014 at 1:30 PM
Sustainability Pays Off

Productivity and Sustainability: 5 Tips for a Greener Workplace

Every April, Marsh & McLennan Agency - West hosts Spring Cleaning Week to encourage associates to clean up, get organized and this year, create a sustainable workplace. Research has shown that organized employees with tidy work stations are more creative and less stressed. Clutter can hinder productivity by invading open spaces that allow people to problem solve.* Less clutter coupled with eco-friendly, “green” habits result in a more productive and engaged workforce. According to a recent UCLA study**, employees who perceive their company to be environmentally friendly typically have higher morale and are more motivated, resulting in higher productivity.

Here are 5 tips to kick-start your sustainability program and help employees make a difference at work and in the community.

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Topics: Human Resources, Culture

Annual GROW Keynote Wrap-Up

Posted by Claudette Linzey, Digital Media Specialist on April 7, 2014 at 11:09 AM
Annual GROW Keynote Wrap-Up

MMA G.R.O.W., which stands for Growth in Relationship and Opportunities for Women, hosts an Annual Keynote Speaker Event each year to inspire our associates, clients and business partners in the community. This year, we were fortunate to have Molly Fletcher, also commonly referred to as the female Jerry Maguire, speak about her experiences and provide key points to help women reach their full potential and improve performance. As a top sports agent in a male-dominated industry, Molly Fletcher shared her unique approach to success that these experiences have helped her develop.

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Topics: GROW, Culture

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