LOMA is a life and health insurance industry organization that provides training and services to operations management in the insurance and financial services industry.  They recently released a conversation they had with ten insurance leaders to get their opinions on a variety of topics.  One of the most interesting questions was:  “what is the greatest challenge the life industry faces and how can it deal with this challenge?”  In their own words, here’s what they said.

Neal Baumann, Deloitte:  “Profitable growth.”

Benjamin Bujia, Huatai Life: “establishing a clearly defined business model to provide a real value proposition to customers and the public.  Only through such a model can the industry build a strong image and grow premium volume at a steady rate without constant ups and downs.”

Thomas Burns, Allianz Life: [there are]”not enough financial advisors offering insurance as part of their practice.”

Michael Fanning, Mass Mutual:  “Life insurance ownership remains at a 50-year low [and] will continue to be the biggest challenge in our industry.”  He attributes this to the fact that there are fewer agents.  Fewer people telling the story of life insurance.

Doug French, Ernst & Young: “managing in the current low interest rate environment, which increases the risk of spread compression for existing products.”

Peter Golato, Nationwide: “how the current economy is challenging for fixed interest rate products.”  He wants to inform customers that life insurance is a necessity, not a luxury.

W. Kenny Massey, Modern Woodmen of America:  “Government, regulatory concerns.”

Daniel Mulheran, ING US Insurance:  “Distribution-the lack of.  We need to create new ways to deliver our services to the customer and find a way to make what we do hip and cool.”

Tim Stonehocker, Ameritas Life: “Lack of innovation as a result of deep customer (consumer) insights.

Craig Weber, Celent: “The perpetual challenge of innovating while supporting the long tail of existing business is still important.