The first of these to feature is Mark Tomlinson of WPA. Mark has been at all of the Fairs to date and clearly sees the benefit of exhibiting, networking and attending the workshops for all types of business.
Name: Mark Tomlinson
Name of your business: WPA
Website Address: www.wpa.org.uk/marktomlinson
1. What did you do before your current business?
27 years in banking with TSB & Lloyds TSB (12 years in branches including 4 as a branch manager in the Midlands and 15 years in a broad range of Head Office roles in Birmingham, Bristol, London, Haywards Heath)
2. What made you start your current business?
I (eventually) got redundancy from the bank having become disillusioned with the corporate greed and lack of integrity that had developed in the sector in the previous 10 years or so. I came across WPA and realised that as a not for profit provider of Health Insurance (for 114 years) it had a completely different ethos, not driven by ‘maximising shareholder value’, but rather by the desire to help our Clients in their times of need
3. What do you most enjoy about your business?
When my Customers make claims on their WPA Health Insurance which give them control/choice over their own healthcare for diagnosis/treatment when unexpectedly ill. Speaking to them afterwards and appreciating how much they valued the WPA cover when it was needed.
4. If you had a magic wand what would you change about your business?
The inbuilt UK population’s default position to abdicate taking responsibility for our own healthcare because the NHS is there – whilst the NHS is a terrific organisation in very many ways, it can’t do everything for everybody all of the time and does have challenges.
5. Do you have any useful tips or ideas that you could share?
Networking has been hugely helpful for me (in many ways – not just taking on new Customers, although this does happen over time) – especially 4Networking (4N), for which I’m now Regional Leader for Monmouthshire, Herefordshire & Gloucestershire