ABL Life CEO ZheQiang Xie, third from right in the front row, and Keimyung University Daegu Dongsan Hospital CEO Suh Young-sung, second from right in the front row, show the word “respect” in Korean sign language together with ABL Life FCs and employees at the firm’s district office in Daegu on June 22. The country has carried out the #ThanksChallenge campaign of appreciating the medical staff who have worked tirelessly to deal with the virus pandemic. Placing the right hand with the thumb up on top of the left palm means “respect” in sign language. Photo courtesy of ABL Life

Seoul-based life insurer tries to internalize vision of whole-hearted collaboration

ABL Life CEO ZheQiang Xie visited the life insurer’s district office in Daegu, once South Korea’s epicenter of the COVID-19 fight, on June 22 to encourage employees there.

Inviting one of the medical leaders who headed the anti-virus war in Daegu, about 300 kilometers southeast of Seoul, ABL Life shared the spirit of “uniting and collaborating for one vision and one goal.”

Stressing the message of whole-hearted cooperation, CEO Xie said that the company would internalize such culture to deal with challenges like a low interest rate, low growth, new accounting regime, and COVID-19.

We will spare no efforts to establish a sound collaborate culture and, thereby, grow as an insurer which provides the best insurance financial service to customers,” he said.

His remarks in Daegu are notable because the metropolitan city was the place hit hard by the novel coronavirus in spring.

Back then, South Korea was the second-largest cluster of virus infection outside China, and Daegu suffered from massive infections with the daily cases reaching hundreds.

Under the stewardship of Keimyung University Daegu Dongsan Hospital, a base hospital of COVID-19 in the city, however, the region managed to grapple with the virus pandemic.

The hospital’s CEO Suh Young-sung told the story to ABL FCs and employees.

All medical center staff, doctors, and nurses coming from across the country shared the same mind that is ‘We should be the ones who do this,’” Suh said.

We treated 1,044 patients for around four months, and 940 people were fully recovered. It was made possible only because we dedicated ourselves and collaborated with each other.”

He added that ABL would also be able to wisely overcome difficulties that the sales field is undergoing if the company is united at every level, including head office and the field, and committed to achieving a goal.

Indeed, ABL’s Daegu office showed its resilience, according to the company.

ABL Life shut down branches and its customer center in Daegu for two weeks in late February and early March when COVID-19 was on the rise there.

Despite a dire situation where the office was shut down, ABL said that FCs voluntarily carried out sales activities, while thoroughly complying with a quarantine guideline.

As a result, the Daegu branches got back on the track soon as amply demonstrated by the fact that the Daegu district office achieved a No. 1 sales target accomplishment ratio in May.

Even before the virus outbreak, ABL Life was recognized as an insurer that accommodates many loyal FCs. As of this May, the firm’s 13th retention rate was 57.5 percent, the highest in the industry, which means that ABL FCs hardly leave the outfit.

To brace for new changes brought about the virus threat, CEO Xie also chaired a regular board meeting in Daegu through a video conference call system.

It marked the company’s first regular board meeting in a district office over its six-decade-plus history, which stretches back to the early 1950s.