Spotlight on…is an initiative of WICI (Women in Credit Insurance) aiming at highlighting females working in the Trade Credit Insurance business. Every month, an new interview article will be published on ICISA website. 

Danielle Cousins is the Managing Director of the EFCIS Bexley office and has been with EFCIS since 2010. Prior to that Danielle worked at Allianz Trade (formally Euler Hermes) in multiple roles, including Senior Claims Assessor and Senior Account Manager.  She has been in Credit Insurance since 2002.  Danielle is known for her technical background, attention to detail, can do attitude, and expertise in the food sector.  Danielle’s biggest achievement is being pivotal in building their revolutionary system for their clients; ARC (Analysis of Risk & Compliance) and driving a change to the way we broker clients as a true business partner to their client’s business. Danielle has 2 x young girls ages 5&7 that fill her personal life along with a never-ending house project.

What is the most important lesson you’ve learnt during your career?

Learning that what motivates you, may not be what motivates others. Learning to read people and understand what’s important to them has made me a better leader and given me greater success. If only I had known that as 25-year-old me, I would have sailed over a few more hurdles. Emotional Intelligence is key!

What are your top 3 tips for a successful career in the trade credit insurance industry?

  • Set your standard, stick to it and then aspire your team to achieve it, rather than amend your standard to fit their service levels. Maintaining a good, consistent service to your internal and external customers is everything; ‘stand your ground’.
  • Always listen! If you want to be a leader, you have to be a great listener and be able to take a lateral view on the sum of everything you learn.
  • To have a good reputation and a successful career, you need to learn how to do hard things well. Working hard and doing things well have always served me well in my career.

What is one frequent mistake you witness leaders making?

The resistance to change and think big. A big idea may take years, but if it can change your world then start it today as one small step everyday can make a huge difference to long term goals.

What are you proudest of having achieved to date?

This will have to be having helping EFCIS build a big dream. Our CEO Andy Moylan pitched me an idea in 2010, I took a brave jump and now it’s our reality. I am proud to have been an integral part in building this dream along with our revolutionary system ARC, that’s fundamentally changing how we service our clients – for example, it’s making us an integral part to any business.

What are the biggest challenges facing our industry?

This one has absolutely got to be education; on what our product really does and changing perspectives from seeing it as a necessary cost to seeing it as a tool for growth. I have learnt to listen to what clients want and been able to deliver an end-to-end solution that de-risks the whole trade credit transaction, supports the sales teams and provides best in market information and insights. We certainly need to market ourselves better as an industry.