February 14, 2024

Challenges and Risks Pay Off

Insights North America United States
Arch Voices

Meet Rob Schenkel

When I was a kid, I thought I would grow up to become an artist at Disney. But then I realized I did not have the artistic skills necessary to do this type of work, so I redirected to a corporate career that was inspired in part by an aunt who was a corporate lawyer. I was interested in the type of work my aunt did, which led me to pursue the field of insurance law — particularly in the product development area.

A Thirst for Challenge

After practicing for a year at a law firm and clerking at the Hartford Superior Court, I entered the insurance industry in claims management at The Hartford, where I managed claims in litigation. This gave me the foundational knowledge of policy language that I needed to be able to move to the product side and draft policy forms.

After about four years of claims management, I had a pivotal moment in my career. I moved to the product team as Senior Product Specialist at The Hartford, where I was able to mesh my skills, education and abilities.

In my first product development role, I worked on the Businessowners Policy, focusing primarily on general liability and umbrella. Eventually, I worked on professional liability and cyber coverages as well. I led most of the liability and cyber coverage work for seven years, and in that time, I experienced growth as both an individual contributor and as a leader. Aside from policy drafting experience, I gained valuable experience managing large and visible projects.

There were a number of managers and attorneys who trained me, and they were incredibly influential. To this day, I have modeled a lot of what they taught me. But, after 12 years at The Hartford, I felt like I needed a new challenge. I wanted to continue to develop in my career, to take on more ownership and challenging projects, more leadership and complicated products.

“Why Arch?”

In 2020, I joined Arch in the middle of the global pandemic. Of course, at the time I thought, “Is this a wise move to do this right now?” I’m kind of a conservative person!

But I powered through the uncertainty and decided to go for it. I did a fair bit of research and learned Arch is a great company and is amazing at what it does.

The more I interviewed with Arch, the more I saw what a special opportunity this was for me.

In addition, Arch had plans to grow, and it felt like a real opportunity to build something.  

A Day in the Life

In my role, I work in the Product Development Team as a Product Development Attorney. This team falls under the Corporate Underwriting Department.

Our team supports various business partners in drafting policy language to help support the business strategy. This can be as small as a simple manuscript endorsement or as large as the creation of an entirely new product. We do other work related to policy language development, including competitor research, legal research and product filing correspondence.

In my role as a Product Development Attorney, I leverage my legal and professional background by using drafting, analytical and research skills to put together policy language that aligns with the underwriting intent while also remaining compliant with any applicable laws. I focus on supporting the Professional Liability, Cyber and Subcontractor Default Insurance lines of business.

I have been at Arch almost three years, and it has been a very exciting time. I have been fortunate to take part in the development of a number of new and revised products. 

Smart Risks Pay Off

My advice to anyone considering a career in insurance is to think outside of the box and take smart risks. When faced with an opportunity, consider how it could help you to gain new skills and knowledge.

Rob Schenkel

AVP, Product Development

Arch Insurance | Hartford, CT


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