ReSource Pro’s Chief Operating Officer, Violet Xu, was recently named one of Business Insurance’s 2023 Women to Watch, which recognizes women in insurance who are shaping the future of the industry. With tenure second only to Resource Pro’s founder, Violet’s deep understanding of our clients, industry expertise, and dedication to growth shaped ReSource Pro throughout its lifetime. As COO, she will continue to help us expand and improve our services to clients.
Congratulations on being named a 2023 BI Woman to Watch! What does this recognition mean to you?
I think the recognition should encompass the amazing team and culture we have at ReSource Pro. I’ve had the opportunity to work alongside some of the best in the industry at a company where I had the support I needed to grow and succeed. I’ve been with ReSource Pro since the beginning, and I hope this recognition shows other women that they can excel within our company and our industry.
Just 3% of Black, Hispanic, and Asian women make up the insurance industry’s C-suite. What does diversity in leadership mean to you as COO?
I believe it’s important that current leadership takes an active role in addressing inequality and ensures our culture welcomes diversity. Our team brings together people from all over the world, from a range of cultures and professional backgrounds. Growing from 4,000 employees to over 7,500 in the last five years tells me that we’ve created a welcoming, supportive culture that people want to be a part of. Bringing together a range of experiences ultimately allows us to expand and elevate our services to clients.
Are there any wins from your tenure at ReSource Pro that you’re particularly proud of?
The fastest growing of our operations are in India, where, for a variety of reasons, women represent just 23% of the workforce. Within two years of launching our Bangalore office in 2015, I made an active goal to increase the number of women employed there. We reviewed and revised our recruiting and employee development practices, and I’m happy to say that today approximately 45% of our India workforce comprises women, and more than a quarter of office leadership roles are held by women.
Are there other industry-specific challenges that you have addressed in your role at Resource Pro?
One problem we face is that in the insurance industry, face time with clients is typically reserved solely for executives and sales teams. This means that newcomers often don’t get the client interactions they need to fully understand our customers. I worked to develop structures to ensure our entry-level team members could engage in traditional client interactions, which provides a deeper understanding of the client’s challenges and needs. I believe this approach has contributed to our client retention rate of more than 95% over the last 20 years.
What advice do you have for young people entering specialized fields like insurtech?
Your early years are a great time to learn as much as possible. I describe my own background as well-rounded and “from the ground up,” and these experiences gave me a mastery of the fundamentals of the insurance industry, a better understanding of our clients’ needs, and helped me become a more patient leader and mentor.
You should also look for companies and cultures that value and support your growth – advocate for yourself and your skills, never sell yourself short, and find mentors who want you to succeed.