What first attracted you to Aon?
I was always fundamentally interested in risk, and I wanted to work for a company that was an expert on it. Aon is a great source of advice to many commercial entities, helping them evaluate, manage and build up a view of the various risks they face.
Briefly tell us about your career so far.
Originally, I took four four-month placements in different areas of the business: Corporate, Global Risks, Compliance, and the Aon Mergers & Acquisitions Group. The four placements offered a truly diverse exposure to the core businesses Aon is involved in. At the end of the placements I joined a division whose main focus is in project management and delivering those services to the private equity community.
What's your most memorable moment at Aon?
I would say my most memorable moment at Aon took place in Italy on a Saturday. During a client event in Italy, I was called at 3.00am by Aon colleagues in the US: one of our clients needed an updated version of our report for their debt providers within hours. In the end, I had to commandeer the Hotel receptionists' computer, and battle my way through Microsoft Word in Italian, but ultimately I managed to issue the report within the deadline!
What are the best things about your role and location?
I think one of the best things about my role is quite simply the quality, attitude and professionalism of my colleagues. It's also great to have a high calibre client base, and a high level of responsibility and accountability. I like to feel challenged.
What skills do graduates need to succeed in your business area?
I think you need to be able to work under pressure, and to tight deadlines. Also, because you work with so many different people, you need to gel with your team mates, and be able to express yourself articulately and concisely with both Aon colleagues and clients alike. It also helps if you can influence people.
What happens in a typical day for you?
Typically, I could be fielding telephone calls from clients who need our assistance with new deals or projects they are working on. Equally, I could be setting up and managing Aon project teams in order to collate data, then review and assess it: ultimately, we then publish a diligence report for our client that will be relied upon by the banks financing the project. There will, in any given day, obviously also be many meetings, either on conference phone or in person – either to tackle business tasks, or to develop relationships with a view to generating new business.
How would you describe the people you work with?
The people I work with are the single most important aspect of what we offer to clients. There is one common goal, a commitment to each other as a team, to deliver the optimum service to our clients. The culture is very much one of ‘working together to get the job done', and when we're not working, looking to have as much fun as possible!