Career Satisfaction Outside The Wall Street Grind
Unique Career Path
While many people at New York Life Insurance Company start their career in the field and then make the switch to the Home Office, Bianca O’Brien carved her own special path. She joined the Home Office from college and had a successful career track where she proved herself in a number of positions. Bianca then decided to go into the field…first as an agent, then Partner, then Senior Partner at one of New York Life’s largest offices – the Long Island General Office. From there she led the Jericho Sales Office and now continues her journey as a Corporate Vice President in the Northeastern Zone.
Her Path to Success
After earning her business degree in economics at SUNY Oneonta, Bianca set off to pursue her career aspirations. “My goal was to be a Wall Street trader. In the process, I applied for a position at New York Life realizing that a career at a financial services company would be a great start.” Before long she recognized the career opportunities at New York Life with its defined path to advancement and ability to fast-track. During her corporate career, Bianca excelled in various positions. She was thriving at New York Life and never looked back to Wall Street. “I could achieve all my career goals at New York Life.” Bianca stated.
When she transferred to the Agency Department, she had a first-hand view on what it meant to be an agent and a field manager. “At Agency meetings, I would listen to agents speak about their careers and about the difference they made in clients’ lives. That’s what I wanted to do– help provide financial security for families. Becoming an agent fulfilled my career dreams – a little differently than I had originally imagined. Here I could be an entrepreneur, have terrific income potential, and make a difference.”
Life as an Agent
In 2004, Bianca joined the Long Island General Office to become an agent. She welcomed the changes in her work life. “Customizing my work hours was a big change from the typical corporate career structure. I didn’t work less, but I structured my schedule to spend time with my daughter and family.”
Bianca’s hard work paid off. She qualified as a member of the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT)1 – a rare achievement for agents in their first year. Bianca received many awards, including two-time Rookie of the Month, Career Success Award, Annuity Champion, and the Award of Excellence as a Top Producing agent in the Northeastern Zone.
Having corporate and field skill sets coupled with agent success perfectly positioned her to be a strong leader. Her desire to lead and advance became the catalyst to her next step– field management.
Next Growth Opportunities: Management
In 2008, Bianca became a Partner with the Long Island General Office, responsible for recruiting and developing new agents. Bianca’s capability to spot talent allowed her to grow a diverse unit. She looked for coachability and a strong work ethic as important traits in becoming an agent. “My agents were diverse and could relate to various markets but focused primarily on families. To be successful in this business, you need to be able to take the advice of others and follow the New York Life systems. Then you must have the discipline and work ethic to become successful.”
In September 2011, Bianca added to her success and earned a promotion to Senior Partner. In 2012 she took over leadership of the Jericho Sales Office.
Today, in the Northeastern Zone, she is taking on a larger leadership role in the coaching and development of the field management teams. According to her former Managing Partner, Sal Farina, of Long Island, “Bianca is a dynamic leader and a successful professional executive woman at New York Life; a true example of how you define and achieve your own career success at New York Life.”
Why New York Life?
For over 168 years, New York Life has provided financial security to families and businesses, and supports the success of its employees. New York Life offers an innovative workplace. In fact, New York Life was recognized by Working Mother Magazine as a 2012 Best Company for Multicultural Women and named by the National Association for Female Executives (NAFE) to the 2012 NAFE Top 50 Companies for Executive Women list. The company also earned Profiles in Diversity Journal’s 2013 Diversity Leader Award and has been named a ‘Top Company for LGBT Equality’ by Work Life Matters magazine for 2012.
To learn more about what New York Life can do for your career, go to www.nylcareersforwomen.com and www.newyorklife.com/careers. You can also contact a local New York Life recruiter at an office near you.
1 MDRT, The Premier Association of Financial Professionals®, is recognized throughout the industry as the standard of excellence in life insurance sales performance.