Nick is our new senior broker at Romero Insurance Brokers.
When it comes to insurance Nick definitely knows his stuff, but, under-the-radar, he’s also an aficionado in areas we wouldn’t expect.
What is your job role?
It’s Senior Broker.
Where were you before Romero?
I was at a multi-national competitor, I joined them during lockdown. But I wasn’t happy with the experience; working from home, I didn’t meet any of my colleagues (other than Zoom calls) and it was difficult to get a handle on my clients. So, I was mostly sat at home through lockdown, it was a strange experience.
How did you start out in insurance?
Well, I left Uni one year in. The course I was on was one which I didn’t find interesting or compelling, so I decided to leave after a year. I wasn’t sure what I was I wanting to do going forward, but was thinking about joining the Armed Forces and was looking to join the Royal Navy – I had a friend there and I like the sea – but Mum didn’t want me to go away. She wrote up a CV and sent it out to various local companies; IT firms and the like. Got a job working for a broker in York, thought I’d try it out for a few months and 26 years later I am still in insurance.
How did you come to Romero?
I was at home and my mobile rang, I looked and it was from an unknown number. I picked it up and it was Justin (Romero-Trigo) himself. He rang me directly, so I came in for an interview and I told him I wasn’t gelling well at my old firm. I already knew Richard Towler and Paul Judge. It just made sense.
What are the elements of your job you enjoy?
I enjoy dealing with clients and providing a quality service. I also enjoy broking and negotiating with insurers.
What do you find challenging about insurance?
Its less customer focused. Sometimes there feels like there are restrictions meaning the customers do not benefit. I want it to be more about the customer and their needs.
What would you like to change about insurance?
Make regulation more streamlined for the customer, so the experience of dealing with insurance is a smoother for them.
What biscuit would you be and why?
I don’t eat that many biscuits at home, though if they are gifted at work I just demolish them. My favourite would be Chocolate Leibniz, as they are more chocolate than biscuit.
What motivates you and drives you to succeed?
Competing with myself to be better.
What was your first job and how old were you?
It was my mother, again, who got me my first job. I was fifteen and it was at a local pig farm. People say pigs are fluffy and cute, but this job was eye-opening. Horrible animals – I’m more than happy to eat pork chops.
Which famous artist or band is playing at your dream birthday party?
Nirvana – I never got to see them live. Missed out on them at the Reading Festival, but I had tickets to see them in England in 1994, unfortunately Kurt Cobain died just before the tour.
Can you recommend something entertaining for us to watch tonight?
Invincible on Amazon. It’s a superhero animation, but not one to show your kids. You’ll like it if you liked The Boys; and if you’ve not seen that, watch it; if you have seen that then read the comic, it’s even better.
If you could go back to the past and visit a period of time, which period would it be and why?
The Japanese Sengoku Jidai period. When the three warlords Tokugawa Ieyasu, Hideyoshi and Oda Nobunaga unified Japan. It would be fascinating to go back and see Japan during this period. Also, Ancient Rome, to see someone like general Scipio Africanus during his victory over Hannibal at the Battle of Zama. Some say Napoleon or Wellington are the greatest generals, but what Africanus achieved was incredible.
Would you rather be the world’s best singer, dancer or writer?
I can’t sing, can’t dance – apart from maybe after a few beers at the Christmas Party. No, I’d definitely be a writer. Maybe historical fantasy or some speculative fiction.
Do you play an instrument?
I’m tone deaf, I wouldn’t be able to tell if what I’m playing is in tune. I’d play the violin if I could. One of my friends writes music for the BBC, he did the music for the Sarah Jane Adventures.
What’s your favourite sport to play and favourite sport to watch?
I’ve really got into CrossFit. It’s been hard to get back into it after lockdown, but slowly getting there. Its about pushing yourself, bettering yourself. I love it, I wish I’d been doing it for a lot longer. I’ve taken part in the CrossFit Open when my box (that’s what we call the gym) was running the events. Not that I place anywhere, but it’s fun to take part in workouts that elite level athletes are competing in all across the planet.
It’s all about fitness, strength, gymnastics, it’s a multi-discipline activity that combines many factors in a workout; its not like getting fit in the gym, looking at yourself doing bicep curls in the mirror; its about functional movement and the whole body.
To get started you join a local “box” and go through a two week induction which teaches you the basic movements, as some of the skills taught include weightlifting (i.e. clean and jerk, snatches, etc) and gymnastic movement (handstands, skinning the cat) and to find out the level of fitness you are currently at. After the induction you can then join classes, which tend to comprise 30-40 minutes of strength/technique training and then a workout which will feature the movements you have just been practicing.
(CrossFitters are like vegans, they talk endlessly about it.)
Tv shows, films or video games?
Oh, video games. I’m a PC gamer, I like my strategy games, it’s how I kept sane over lockdown, socialising with my friends in the evening online. I was hooked in the early 80s when the family went to a local pub and they had a Space Invaders machine in the lounge area.
What’s currently on your mantlepiece?
A porcelain maneki neko, a tacky beckoning cat I got from Japan. It’s meant to give you good health and prosperity.
Can you recount for us your five minutes of fame?
Well, I’ve had thirty seconds of fame. In a previous company, we sponsored the Great Yorkshire run in Harrogate. My boss and I were running in it too and we met Nick Hancock in the Stray FM studios, as my boss was to be interviewed, but Nick Hancock also turned the mic onto me for my thoughts on the event. I told what I thought was my exciting take on the up-coming event. Know one I knew listened in.
If you were stranded on a desert island and could take one book, one luxury and one song, what would they be?
Book – American psycho. I’ve read it at least half a dozen times and keep finding new things in it.
Luxury – Lazy boy chair. One that gives a massage and has a cooler fridge to store my beer.
Song – Nirvana, In Bloom.