In a call center, a servant leader gets results by focusing on the best interests of the people they lead and, by extension, the customers they assist. During her time with Assurant, Customer Operations Manager Lindsay Brown exemplified the ideal of leadership by encouraging her team members to provide an outstanding customer experience. At home, she shows a charitable spirit by supporting her South Dakota community as a first responder and firefighter.
Engaging in Volunteerism at Assurant
Lindsay fills a vital community need as a volunteer first responder and firefighter with her community’s fire department. “We’re a 50-minute drive from Rapid City, and in an emergency, it can easily take an ambulance an hour and a half to get to the scene. When my husband and I found out about that, we decided to volunteer.” The fire department offered training in firefighting and first response. Once she started, Lindsay knew she was in the right place: “I was hooked,” she said with enthusiasm and grit. “The training was amazing.”
Most of the calls Lindsay gets are for medical emergencies in a 30-mile radius of her town. “We’re all neighbors out here in the Black Hills,” she said, “even though we might live miles apart.” Her volunteer work gives Lindsay an enhanced sense of community. “It makes me feel responsible for my area and the people who live there. It’s a good feeling knowing I can help out.”
Lindsay’s first responder training enables her to provide quick, critical help to those in need. “Proximity is very important. I can get to a scene in 20 minutes,” she said. Once she’s there, Lindsay assesses the patient and relays the information to medical personnel so they can be prepared. It’s a critical step in an emergency, but Lindsay, with humility, downplays her role. “Lots of times, after the first response work is done, I’m just there to comfort people. I’ve also done a lot of traffic control, keeping things going so the medical people can get where they need to. And I’ve helped get several people out of ditches — the roads here are gravel and twisty!”
Lindsay was also one of the firefighters who helped contain the Schroeder wildfire in late March. This large fire burned only 4 miles from Rapid City. It caused evacuations, as several neighborhoods were threatened. “I got the call on a workday,” Lindsay said. Her compassionate nature kicked in at once. “I felt a pull like I just had to go and help.”
She had to get the okay to leave and her manager, true to the spirit of supporting our people, encouraged her to go help immediately. “I went to my supervisor, got cleared to leave, and headed out there. Support from local fire departments was a key to suppressing that fire, so I was glad I could be there.”
Raising Up Teammates
The compassion and servant mindset that led Lindsay to her firefighting work is reflected in the experience she provides for her Preneed call center team. “Leading people is my passion,” Lindsay said. “The best part about it is helping people rise in their careers. I’ve had dedicated service reps be promoted to more senior positions. One of these wants to be a manager. I know she’s going to make it, and I want to help her. When one of your people succeeds, it’s a real gift.”
Lindsay encourages her team to take the same caring attitude with the callers they service. “Preneed is a very emotional area,” she said. “Even though in my department, callers are usually the writing agents and not the families, they are involved with that difficult event. I always remind people that we can make or break somebody’s day with our phone interaction. Our callers are providing peace of mind and it’s a valuable service to help with that.”
Assurant brings together diverse, talented leaders to solve challenges and empower our partners and consumers to thrive. We’re a socially responsible company, focused on continued growth by doing what’s right. Helpful people like Lindsay, who engage in life in and out of work with a spirit of service, are remarkably easy to come by at Assurant. In ways big and small, individually and in groups, they support their co-workers, their customers, and their communities with professionalism and a genuine spirit of empathy.
Social Responsibility Opportunities Make Assurant a Best Place to Work
Lindsay’s acts of service leadership in and out of the office, when an Assurant employee, couldn’t be a better representation of our larger company ideals, which is why we make it a point to support our communities, especially in our employees’ personal efforts.
Assurant offers eight hours of paid volunteer time annually, which Lindsay recalls using to help fight the March wildfire. “I was also awarded $100 for volunteerism, and I donated that to Habitat for Humanity. I also appreciate the opportunities to donate money to good causes and have it matched through Assurant Cares.” Through the program Lindsay mentioned, all eligible employees worldwide can request a dollar-for-dollar donation match up to $1,000 per year through the Assurant Cares program.
The supplemental programs Assurant provides have helped us gain recognition by Points of Light, the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service, as one of the 50 most community-minded companies in the U.S. And we don’t intend on slowing those efforts. One of Assurant’s key goals for the next five years is to strengthen communities where we operate through volunteerism and engagement to support the greater good. That goal is strengthened by one generous act at a time. Lindsay’s volunteerism is a valuable example of our efforts to build not just a better business, but a better world.
To find out more about Assurant’s goals — and achievements — in community involvement and giving, read our 2021 Assurant Social Responsibility Report.