The theme of the ninth National Forum for Life Insurance Advisors, also known as NAFLIA 2018, ‘Life Insurance Advisor – Beyond 2020’ rang out loud and clear in every item of the event’s agenda. The theme dwelt upon the changes in the character of the life insurance advisor and the elements that will bring about evolution of the role.
Held at the Shangri-La Hotel in Colombo on 3 September, NAFLIA is the premier event for life insurance advisors in Sri Lanka. The event is annually organised by the Marketing and Sales Forum (MSF) of the Insurance Association of Sri Lanka (IASL) in a bid to support the development of the life insurance sector in the country.
Gracing NAFLIA 2018 as Chief Guest was Insurance Regulatory Commission (IRCSL) of Sri Lanka Chairman Mano Tittawella, while the Guest of Honour and Motivational Speaker was University of Sri Jayawardenapura Vice Chancellor Professor Sampath Amaratunga. IRCSL Director General Damayanthi Fernando was also present as a special guest along with IASL President and the HNB Assurance Managing Director/CEO Deepthi Lokuarachchi.
Other dignitaries present included IASL Treasurer and Janashakthi Life PLC CEO Jude Fernando, IASL Secretary General Upali Samarasinghe, MSF past Chairman and Ceylinco Life PLC Senior Deputy Manager of Marketing Samitha Hemachandra, MSF Chairman and Janashakthi Life PLC General Manager of Life Operations Hashra Weerawardena, and NAFLIA Project Chairman and Life Insurance Corporation Lanka Ltd. Deputy General Manager of Marketing Sales and Distribution Madhawa Gunaratne.
Chief executive officers, managing directors, general managers, managers, executives, and most importantly, life insurance advisors of all leading Insurance companies in Sri Lanka were present at the forum.
Tittawella and Lokuarachchi placed special emphasis on the importance of keeping up with the changes in technology and the trends of society in their addresses. The duo made it clear that adaptation to the changing environment was the primary means of ensuring the development of the Insurance industry. Professor Amaratunga regaled the audience with inspiring tales of his life in Japan. According to the Vice Chancellor, the patriotism, adaptability, perseverance and humility of the Japanese are admirable characteristics to adopt and maintain in the aim to develop not merely the insurance industry but the nation itself.
This year’s panel discussion at NAFLIA was a most unique and inspiring one, titled ‘MDRT Experience Zone’, featuring members of the industry who have qualified to participate at the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) global conferences. The panel was moderated by AIA Insurance PLC Head of Training and Development Sumendra Jayaram. Some of the participants of the panel were members of the MDRT, which is the premier association of financial professionals. MDRT is a global, independent association of more than 66,000 of the world’s leading life insurance and financial services professionals from more than 500 companies in 72 nations and territories. Members of the panel discussed a number of topics such as the value of MDRT, the experience and knowledge gained from MDRT meetings, one of the most important lessons of MDRT – finding balance in one’s professional life, how to gain the most number of policies, and advice to those aspiring to qualify for MDRT.
The final event on the agenda was the awards ceremony of Insurance Month 2017. S. K. A. S. Perera of Ceylinco Life Insurance was the overall award winner, having sold the highest number of policies and achieved the most premiums.
NAFLIA and the entire plethora of events organised by the IASL are some of the means by which the Sri Lankan life insurance industry strives to raise awareness about their trade, because when it comes to life insurance, it’s better to be 10 years too early than one minute too late.