Employee Spotlight: Taryn Haas, Partner Success Manager

Welcome to the Boost Employee Spotlight! Each month, we feature a different member of the Boost team and their story. This month, meet Taryn Haas, Partner Success Manager for Boost.


How did you get started working in the insurance industry? What did you like about it, and what could have been better?

Those of us in the insurance industry are used to hearing that working here was never exactly intended, we just fell into it. That, once you’re here, you realize the perks - it’s stable, it pays relatively well (especially if you can get into a niche), and there’s a huge talent shortage. 

But all of that tends to come with a sort of acceptance, a resignation that yes, sometimes your work will be boring, you’ll have to use programs built in the 90s, you’ll have to deal with corporate culture and politics. Generally, it seems like a pretty decent trade-off; it’s not glamorous, but even if you do an average job, you’ll do well. 

I was solidly in that bucket prior to joining the Boost team. I started my career in an MGA, “falling into insurance” the same as many of us, and then found my people at InsNerds, which springboarded me to falling in love with the industry. Working in E&S meant seeing all these parts of business and people’s lives that I never had before, from one of the first axe-throwing BYOB venues to vacant properties turned into skate parks. The variety and creativity required to deal with those situations was fun and made me feel like I was using skills I valued to come up with solutions. 

But I also dealt with those industry issues. I’m not the best with office politics, I loathe the justification of “it’s always been done this way,” and I hate when I can’t voice ideas outside of my job description’s limitations. So I left a traditional carrier and went to an agency that ran like a startup, where I had input wherever I wanted to give it. At the same time, I’m not an agency person (give me a steady paycheck over unlimited commission potential any day), and I missed the complexities of underwriting and MGA/carrier relationships. 


What are some of the highlights of your first week at Boost?

On my third day of my second week, I ended up having some drinks with, well, most everyone that was in the office that day. I talked through product ideas with the CEO, Alex, I spent time with our Head of People, Jules, bonding equally over unique music tastes and the sad state of diversity in insurance. While I’m sure there are some office politics that I’m not catching on to due to my new-ness and general naivety to those things, I couldn’t help feeling like this was different. Hell, my first day the CRO was the one to give me a tour of the office, the CFO sits across from me, and the CEO hangs around with his adorable English Bulldog, Jack. I could approach any of them without hesitation, whether just to say hi or ask a question. 


What does a Partner Success Manager do? What does your typical week look like?

I’m definitely still in the learning phase, but this role is focused on helping our partners implement a product. This includes answering questions, making sure the client’s and our tech teams are on track, and everything else that comes with project management. A typical week right now is a lot of partner meetings, checking in with the various teams at Boost, and brainstorming solutions to potential pain points for partners. It’s a really varied role and I love that I get to see so many parts of what Boost does! 


What’s one thing you’re excited to work on at Boost?

More than anything, it’s that I’m not siloed into my role on the growth team. I’ve already had brainstorming sessions with the Head of Underwriting and the Director of Insurance, which would never have happened anywhere else, since I don’t have “underwriter” in my title. Ideas are valued more than anything else and, even when I’ve been nervous to ask a question or bring something up because I don’t want to step on toes, it’s been greeted enthusiastically and with serious consideration. I’m not just a part of the Growth team - I’m part of the Boost team. 


If you could tell one thing to other people who might be looking to make a change, what would it be?

I am realizing those trade-offs I made to work in insurance didn’t need to be trade-offs. That my frustrations around how things have always been done, that you have to do your time to move up or move out, are, well, wrong. They’re only that way because people allow them to soldier on, a steadfast line of comfortability that results in boredom and burnout. 

As I sit at my desk, petting the CEO’s eternally-happy dog, I am filled with a new sense of promise about what the insurance industry could be on a grander scale. That we could get rid of the lines around who has the right background and standing and enough years, to be in any particular role or have a specific word in their title. That brainstorming outside of your department should happen regularly and consistently - hell, don’t even make it something that has to be considered, just allow for it to happen. 

Above all, let’s stop promoting the idea that insurance is worth the trade offs, ones that are only there because they’ve always been there. This industry can be a steady paycheck and exciting and a meritocracy and tech-forward. In two weeks, Boost has shown me the only barrier to reaching that is the structures in place and held up by those in positions of power. Let’s build something new that invites in a whole new generation of talent and excitement for an industry filled with complexity and creativity.


Boost is hiring! Learn more about our team and mission, and find out why Built In named Boost one of New York City's best places to work.

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