Featured: Work Smart Now! – Vaccines Alone Are Not Enough – Predicting Severe COVID – Zoom Work Relationships Are Hard to Build – Featured: Global Mobility Teams Prepare for Remobilization

In the March 2021 issue: Work Smart Now! – Richard Polak Vaccines Alone Are Not Enough – Caitjan Gainty, Agnes Arnold-Forster Predicting Severe COVID – Rishi Gupta, Mahdad Noursadeghi Zoom Work Relationships Are Hard to Build – Nancy R. Buchan, Wendi L. Adair, Xiao-Ping Chen Global Mobility Teams Prepare for Remobilization – Generali Employee Benefits

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in April 2021 published its latest set of Composite Leading Indicators (CLIs). Designed to anticipate turning points in economic activity relative to long-term trends, CLIs continue to strengthen in most major economies. In the US, the CLI increases steadily, thanks to a greater consumer confidence. In Japan, Canada, and the euro-area (especially Germany and Italy), the CLIs point towards a steady

Kornelia Köhler in February 2021 joined Zurich’s multinational pooling network, Zurich Global Employee Benefits Services (ZGEBS) as Costumer Relationship Manager, based in Zurich. She had been working at AIG Global Benefits Network (AIG GBN) for six years, first as an account manager and later as a regional manager. She holds a Master of Applied Economic Sciences from the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

Olga Collins in April 2021 became the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Worldwide Broker Network (WBN), based in San Francisco, California. She succeeds Francie Starnes, who became CEO five years ago and will assume the role of CEO Emeritus through 2021. Collins had been leading WBN member firm Beecher Carlson’s multinational practice for 7 years, as well as WBN’s Young Professionals Academy. Additionally, she’s been a member

U.K. risk and insurance management association Airmic in April 2021 appointed Julia Graham as its new CEO. She takes over from John Ludlow and will work with the association’s chairwoman Tracey Skinner. Previously, Graham served as director of risk management and insurance at global law firm DLA Piper; head of strategic risk, insurance, and compliance for RSA; and was Airmic’s deputy CEO and technical director since 2015. A past

AXA in March 2021 announced a series of senior leadership changes in the context of the implementation of its new strategic plan, Driving Progress 2023, presented in December 2020. According to CEO Thomas Buberl, “[…] a renewed leadership team and a simpler organisation [will] accelerate the execution of our strategic priorities […]”. Simplification of AXA’s Corporate Center AXA’s Corporate Center will be led by two Deputy CEOs: Frédéric de

What is a “great” workplace? Many might believe that organizations offering the best benefits, such as healthcare and free meals, automatically create the best office environments, but that’s not necessarily true. Whereas things like complimentary food and comprehensive healthcare are important to overall workforce health and happiness, they alone do not determine whether a workplace is objectively “great.”

Zurich Insurance in March 2021 launched a new global risk management business unit called Zurich Resilience Solutions (ZRS). It will be led by Hanno Mijer, reporting to Sierra Signorelli, CEO, commercial insurance at Zurich. Initially focusing on property/casualty (P/C) risks, ZRS includes more than 750 risk engineers to deliver risk prevention and mitigation services, complementing traditional insurance products such as employers’ liability, construction, motor fleet, general liability, and property.

Smallpox killed countless millions – 300 million people in the 20th century alone – before it was finally declared eradicated on May 8 1980. It was a momentous day, marking what the current director general of the World Health Organization, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, called the greatest “public health triumph in world history”.

It is often said that the only certainty in life is uncertainty. And never more so than over the last year. Not to mention for the foreseeable. What we do know for sure is that global mobility is not about to disappear in a (post) pandemic world, as has been suggested by some commentators. Opportunities abound and the richness of the global assignment will not be usurped by the remoteness of the virtual assignment any time soon.

Workers who communicate with their colleagues mainly through videoconferencing are far less effective at building relationships than when the communication is done face to face, according to a study we recently completed and just submitted for peer review. We also found two important ways employees can overcome the downside of video meetings.

The pandemic continues to pose huge challenges to health services worldwide. Hospitals are in crisis as the pace of new COVID-19 cases outstrips their capacity. What makes things particularly difficult is that the coronavirus doesn’t affect everyone in the same way.

In February 2021, MAXIS Global Benefits Network (MAXIS GBN) announced the advancement of Paul Lewis to the position of Regional Director for the Americas. He is joined in this new team by Paul Mielkhe as Director, Christinea Chase as Senior Client Relationship Manager, and Diana Daszewski as Senior Account Manager. Lewis joined MAXIS GBN in 2016 and had been leading their US East Region’s Business Development team. Henceforth, he

Gallagher in February 2021 announced that Dieter Gistelinck had joined as Managing Consultant, in the Multinational Benefits & HR Consulting practice in Gallagher’s Benefits and HR Consulting Division. Gistelinck will be based in Brussels, Belgium. In his new role at Gallagher, Gistelinck will be responsible for developing the Gallagher Global Workforce Strategy consulting portfolio in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region. This is achieved through understanding clients’

The World Economic Forum (WEF) in January 2021 published the 16th edition of its annual Global Risks Report. Prepared with input from global broker Marsh McLennan, South Korean conglomerate SK Group, and insurance carrier Zurich, the 2021 edition of the report focuses on risks arising from societal fractures, with implications for human health, unemployment, widening digital divides, youth disillusionment, and geopolitical fragmentation. According to the WEF, large cohorts of

As CEO of MAXIS GBN, Mattieu Rouot oversees relationships with more than 500 multinational companies in over 120 countries around the world. Global Benefits Vision: Mattieu, thank you for speaking to us – Can you share a few highlights of your career, perhaps with emphasis on global employee benefits?

Whether or not a person with COVID-19 develops severe disease depends a lot on how their immune system reacts to the coronavirus. But scientists still don’t know why some people develop severe disease while others suffer only mild symptoms – or no symptoms at all. Now, a new study from Yale University sheds some light on the issue.

After a year of toxic stress ignited by so much fear and uncertainty, now is a good time to reset, pay attention to your mental health and develop some healthy ways to manage the pressures going forward. Brain science has led to some drug-free techniques that you can put to use right now. I am health psychologist who developed a method that harnesses our rip-roaring emotions to rapidly switch off stress and activate positive emotions instead. This technique from emotional brain training is not perfect for everyone, but it can help many people break free of stress when they get stuck on negative thoughts.

For most people, infection with SARS-CoV-2 – the virus that causes COVID-19 – leads to mild, short-term symptoms, acute respiratory illness, or possibly no symptoms at all. But some people have long-lasting symptoms after their infection – this has been dubbed “long COVID”.

Featured: Interview of Mattieu Rouot, CEO, MAXIS GBN – Severe COVID May Be Caused by Autoantibodies – Long COVID, Who Is at Risk? – Outsmarting COVID-19 Fears

In the January 2021 issue: Featured: Interview of Mattieu Rouot, CEO, MAXIS Global Benefits Network Severe COVID May Be Caused by Autoantibodies – Rebecca Aicheler Long COVID – Who Is at Risk? – Frances Williams Outsmarting COVID-19 Fears – Laurel Mellin

International employee benefits network IGP in December 2020 announced the launch of its “Virtual Training Series” to be held in the first half of 2021. The series of six webinars will be repeated in different time zones and will be available in English, German and/or French. January 21, 2021: Trends & Development of the International Employee Benefits Market February 18, 2021: Introduction to IGP Pooling March 18, 2021: Introduction

International employee benefits network MAXIS Global Benefits Network (MAXIS GBN) in January 2021 announced it had selected ICAS World, a London, UK-based employee assistance programme (EAP) platform, as a global provider of counselling support and assistance. As part of the MAXIS Global Wellness solution, multinational clients will be able to choose to work with ICAS World, giving their employees access to counselling and work-life services including legal and financial

Allianz Global Benefits (AGB), the employee benefits network of Allianz Group, in December 2020 announced the appointment of Frank Forster as Managing Director and Chief Transformation Officer. According to the company, “Forster’s responsibility will include introducing new digital offerings to meet the growing demand of multinational corporate clients while implementing AGB’s holistic business model, organized as an employee benefits platform, to simplify and digitize the business.” In a statement,

Over the past nine months, the word “uncertainty” has cropped up time and time again across the news and social media worldwide. The pandemic has created uncertainty in nearly every aspect of daily life. This is not only down to worries over exposure to COVID-19 and access to medical care, but also concerns about the stability of the economy, job security, the availability of food and household supplies – and even when to book a holiday. We have needed to adjust and readjust our behaviour continually in response to changing risks and government guidelines.

In our daily life, we unfortunately have become used to seeing images of tumors and melanomas. You may have noticed that they’re are not entirely symmetric. This asymmetry is useful to doctors in their diagnoses, but why are they asymmetric?