As part of our commitment to delivering innovative solutions and creating a positive impact for our customers, clients, and teammates, we have proudly assembled a leadership team that is rich in both expertise and creativity, as they cast the vision for the future of Brown & Brown Absence Services Group while also developing and executing against our strategies for success.
We are pleased to continue our ongoing series of leadership profiles by introducing Courtney Scott, Senior Vice President of Marketing & Business Development. Courtney joined Brown & Brown Absence Services Group in 2013, after working closely with the CEO as a marketing consultant for several months – turning a six-month commitment into ten years of exciting development and change!
At that time, Courtney was the first and only full-time marketing resource for the business, but she but has grown her team to include a small, but enormously talented group of content specialists, digital marketing specialists, and communications experts who help to power the Brown & Brown Absence Services Group brand in the market. Courtney also oversees the organization’s business development strategy, which has enabled her to source potential acquisitions and strategic partnerships. She has proudly managed both the due diligence and implementation processes for two significant acquisitions, two book of business purchases, and the deployment of market strategies for several new solutions that Brown & Brown Absence Services Group has released to the market in recent years.
When asked to reflect back to the beginning of her career, Courtney recalled:
“Believe it or not, I was a French and Spanish major in college! After graduating, I sought a role that would capitalize on my language skills and found myself doing translation services for a media company that worked with international marketing firms. I loved working with professionals from around the world, but found that I was even more compelled by the integrated marketing and communications work being done by our customers. I decided to pursue a career in marketing, and I have never looked back.
In my career, I’ve nearly always worked in small to mid-sized organizations with a certain entrepreneurial spirit. That’s allowed me to become something of a “Jill of all trades” in marketing – I’ve done at least a little bit of most marketing functions. However, my heart is really in communications and branding.”
We asked Courtney to share more about her career with Brown & Brown, along with her predictions for the future of the organization and the absence services industry overall, and here is what she had to say:
What responsibilities of your current role do you take the most pride in?
“I greatly enjoy guiding our company’s marketing brand strategy and execution, as well as continuing to seek and validate new business opportunities for us. I am a member of the senior leadership team, which allows me to have a role in setting the course for the overall business and making investments into our culture – which I absolutely love.
I would also say I am most proud of the relationships I’ve developed in my time with this organization, both with my teammates, as well as with the many industry professionals I’ve come to know and consider friends. I will be candid in sharing that I did not imagine spending over a decade in insurance services, but I work every day with some of the finest people I’ve ever known, and I can’t imagine doing anything else.”
What would you consider to be the biggest highlight(s) of your time working here?
“In early 2020, after several significant acquisitions and the release of new service offerings, it became clear that our existing brand strategy was not serving us. We were operating as a “house of brands,” which was causing some confusion in the market and not allowing us to reach our full potential. After months of analysis and approvals, we determined that we would rebrand as Brown & Brown Absence Services Group.
That’s when we were really off to the races, as we developed our new brand messaging and our new visual assets and then set about to update each and every piece of digital and physical collateral, internal and external systems, and much more. We also launched a thorough communications campaign that touched over 20,000 individuals informing them of this change. The scope of the project was huge and there were hundreds of moving parts. Many firms our size would have opted to bring in an outside branding firm to manage it all, but I knew that I had an amazingly talented marketing team and the support of an exceptional leadership group, and that with focus and the right attention to detail, we could do it very effectively in-house. And we did! We launched the new brand in February 2021 with great reception, and I am looking forward to seeing where it takes us in the future!”
You have worked with many members of our Leadership Team for several years now. How does it feel to work with such a long-tenured team?
“I have been giving this a lot of thought lately, as I approach a milestone in my tenure – 10 years with the business! The truth is, we’re practically family at this point. We have such strong rapport and deep ties to each other. I think that connection is so important for the business. Like any team – or family, for that matter – we don’t always agree at the outset of a conversation, but we all have complete confidence that we share common goals – leading a successful organization, creating a best-in-class culture for our team, and leaving a legacy for the business that allows it to grow indefinitely. When you start there, you will always succeed.”
Do you have any thoughts or predictions about how the absence services landscape will evolve over the coming months, given the unique circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic?
“Can I be the ultimate marketer for a moment? Yes, I predict there will be even more need for our services! I think there are three critical forces at play that are dramatically influencing the complexity of absence claims, and I firmly believe that there is no one better suited to helping our partners navigate these waters than Brown & Brown Absence:
- First, I think that COVID – and, in particular – long-haul COVID is here to stay. We’ve barely begun to understand the full implications of the condition, but there is one thing we know for certain: long-haul COVID bears a strong resemblance to functional somatic syndromes (FSS), such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, Lyme disease, and several others that saw a dramatic rise in claims in the 1990s and proved to be particularly difficult to adjudicate. Claims leaders are going to need seasoned expertise to help make thoughtful decisions and to optimize outcomes on these claims.
- Secondly, we are going to increasingly see claims with mental health comorbidities. The pandemic, while largely now passed, took an unimaginable global toll on our mental health and the recovery will not be short or seamless. These claims will also require a high degree of talent to bring them to resolution while also offering supportive, knowledgeable service to the claimants impacted by these conditions.
- Lastly, the wildly changing landscape of leave laws and varying approaches to absence shows no sign of quieting any time soon. Those with the responsibility of guiding claimants or employees through an absence will need up-to-the minute repositories of information, as well as absence practices that are best-in-class, should they hope to retain business and talent. This is going to require absence performance management systems and processes that will support their businesses into the future.”
What excites you most about the future of Brown & Brown Absence Services Group?
“I think we have so many opportunities on the horizon for our new brand and to develop new business opportunities. However, what excites me the most about the future of the organization is the culture that we’re building within this organization.
Having been here for a while, I’ve seen the culture evolve over time, but I think the space we’re creating for our teammates to thrive – a place to grow their careers, enjoy flexibility for a strong work-life balance, engage with like-minded colleagues who bring intelligence, commitment, and vulnerability to the workday, conduct work that truly matters day in and day out, and to be their true authentic selves with a welcomeness of diversity of thought and experience. That’s second to none.
Our CEO is often quoted as saying, “talent breaks all the ties,” and that’s a value we live by. If we can attract and nurture the very best, I can’t wait to see that future.”
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? And/or what is one piece of advice you would give to young professionals looking to grow their career?
“The piece of advice that I would give anyone looking to grow their careers is to be all in. Whatever it is that you are doing, show up with energy, curiosity, and a willingness to do things outside of your job description.
At the risk of appearing one million years old, I will share that in my first professional job, part of my company’s function was sending floppy disks to customers who subscribed to our media database. Each month, several thousand disks needed to be organized by subscriber, packed, and shipped and we did it all in-house. That meant a monthly “packing party” where we ordered pizza and volunteers from around the company gathered in the conference room to pack boxes into the wee hours. I never missed one. I loved the hands-on spirit of helping the company succeed and the collegiate atmosphere of those after-hours events, where stories and jokes were told over the screech of packing tape.
I am still in touch with many of those colleagues and – in fact – just recently reconnected with one on a potential business development opportunity for Brown & Brown Absence. Being all-in will lead to a more enriched life and a more fulfilling career every time!”