Scott Sloan

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Today on The Jay Allen Show, Jay speaks with Scott Sloan. Scott is a seasoned industry professional with strong technical skills who enjoys working with clients to develop a safe working environment and reduce their total cost of risk. Scott is the author of the book, The Risk Manager. Enjoy this conversation today between Scott and Jay, on The Jay Allen Show.
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The transcript is not perfect!
[00:00:03] spk_0: this show is brought to you by safety FM. Well, hello and welcome to another episode of the J Allen. Show you now we are so close to the end of the month, I'm just kind of Bamberg lasted on. How quick this month has actually went by. I mean before you take a look around, you'll notice that it's september already, how quick things have changed anyway. So here we are again with another episode having a lot of things coming your general direction as of late. So let's get into this and let's start talking about what we have going on today. Today I sit down with Scott Sloan, he is a seasoned industry professional with strong technical skills, who enjoys working with clients to develop a safe working environment and reduce the total cost of risk. He has over 25 years of insurance experience and more than 20 years in management and leadership experience and his goals are to help people to be successful and grow their profession. Now, during our conversation today we're going to cover a whole bunch of things that are going on and how I discovered Scott was that he has recently released a book called the risk manager. So I want you to take a listen to what we have going on here and I think that you're really going to enjoy some of the stuff that scott talks about in regards of how he came up with the idea for the book and about his career itself. So take a listen now to this interview with scott Sloan on the G Allen is streaming now on safety FM dot life, How are you doing today? I'm doing great. How about yourself? Oh, I can't complain. I'm glad that we were able to pull this off and I appreciate you reaching out to me in regards of doing this. I'm always mesmerized when people write books and I will tell you when I, when you told me the approach that you took to this, I was like, I'm intrigued, so I definitely knew that I had to get you on onto the show. But when I looked, when I was looking at what you had done, I was kind of curious because you took kind of like a different path to get here. To an extent, you, you're not, well say not only a novelist, but you actually were a product or are still a practitioner when it comes to this. So, how did you, how did you decide to get into this field? Well, I've been in the safety industry for nearly 30 years now, most of my safety experience has been with commercial insurance carriers, lost control and risk management and that sort of thing. And if you saw my profile, you know, I've got a couple of professional certifications and risk management and a couple of safety and so I had all kind of always wanted to write a book. And so I started with that and I wrote one I actually had never intended to publish it. And then my wife said, hey, you know, this is pretty good, how are you going to get that published? Oh, so you wrote a book without the intention of publishing it? Yeah, I just want to see if I could do it. The first goal was to start, because I had the idea for the book for I don't know, 15 years or something. And so the goal was to start and as is true of every goal, right? And every success that you get it prompts the next success, it prompts going to the next goal. So I started and I was like, okay, that that didn't kill me, it wasn't as bad as I thought, right, So then I went along, I really liked the story uh and I finished it and I was letting my wife read it as as we went along, and she goes, man, this is really pretty good. So then I talked with the only person I knew who had published a book and um carry Maribel, I don't know if you know her, but she self published, and so she turned me onto herself publisher. And then so we got that published, that wrote another one, which was the sequel to that. And then I got the idea for the book, The Risk Manager, and that's the one that really incorporates my professional background with being an author and a novelist. Okay, so before we get into that, that's where I kind of want to I want to go into some different directions as well. So how do you decide back in 88 that you want to jump into industrial safety? How does this, I mean, let's just be realistic, even to this day, it's kind of not a super popular industry to jump into. So, so how do you decide all of a sudden at this timeline that you say, okay, this seems like a good idea because I still talk to people and they still tell me that it seems like a bad idea. But I'm just wondering what do you do at the time? I think it's a good idea. And so going back all those years back to 88 I have been working for uh an electric utility, Oklahoma gas and electric and I was not in a safety capacity with them. I had some college hours but I hadn't completed and I didn't have a degree. Right? And so they were pretty big on safety. And then a friend of mine who was in a different department, we were both in transmission and distribution, which is, you know, getting the electricity out and getting it to people. Um, he said, hey, I'm working on a program at what the time was? Central State University when I graduated, it was University of Central Oklahoma. Hey, there you go. You just never know, right. And he said, this is a pretty interesting deal. Uh, it's industrial safety and so you know I talked with him about it. I started taking some classes. We had a couple of classes together. I really enjoyed it and it fit nicely with the work I was doing with an electrical utility right? Because I don't know if you knew this electricity can hurt you. So yeah so you know it's it's probably a good idea for an organization like that to be pretty safe. So the intention was I would just stay with that organization. But once I got my degree it didn't quite work out. They didn't really have the openings that I was hoping they would. And another guy that I had worked that had been in that same program at U. C. O. Got his first job in safety with an insurance carrier in texas. And so he calls me and he says oh man you got to interview for this job, you're gonna love it blah blah blah blah blah. And he called like three or 4 times. And finally I said okay if I will take the interview, will you stop calling me? And I took it? I thought man this sounds like a really neat gig. I did that. And so then I've been in in commercial insurance ever since because it's a really great job. You get to meet a lot of cool people and it's a lot of fun. So when you decide to actually make this move from Oklahoma to texas. Are you are you okay with this idea? Because I know how, how sometimes that that line struggle is the struggle is because I did live in texas for a period of time. So I know how it is. If you're, you know you're you're crossing the line, there was everything okay mentally when you were thinking about doing this, your old friends, Yeah, I lost a few friends. No, it's it normally it seems like part of the conversation and I say that jokingly, but when you start going into this, so all of a sudden you decided to make the move to texas, you get into commercial insurance. But at what point do you decide? Okay, I want to go into a little bit more of the risk management portion of it. When do you say, okay, this is what I want to have, this is what I want to go into and I want to get to the book as well. So I don't want to go to the department, but this is I want to for people to understand the background of exactly you know the knowledge base is there as well. Sure. Um the first company I was with wrote workers compensation only and uh that's my favorite of all the lines. Right? And so then as I progressed through my career I moved to Safeco and they wrote all lines, right? So property liability auto the whole bit um and so that was really interesting and it gave me a little different perspective on things, right? Because there's more to risk management and safety than just protecting people, right? Or protect because you're protecting people property and the environment. That's what we say in the American Society of Safety professionals, right? Um, but all of those are important people the most important. But the rest of those assets are extremely important to a businesses viability, Right? So if, if you've got a building that's burned down, right, pretty tough to make anything out of that building. So very important to protect the building. The same with liability issues, right? If all you're doing is fighting liability claims, you don't have time to focus on innovating, making your product, improving your quality, all of those things that are fall under the umbrella risk management. So that kind of led me a little more that way and I started studying risk management a little more at this point I had my CSP, my Certified Safety Professional certification. And so looking for the next direction, I kind of fell into the risk management part of it or started going that direction because I felt like that rounded out my knowledge base a little bit more. So when you start taking a look at the industry and almost certain now you've acquired your CSP, you're already getting all this other additional information. You also do go back to school. So I don't want it to kind of play off. Like I didn't realize that particular portion when you go into business and human relations. But you go back to school and you're doing all these things. How are you starting to look at this? Because you're looking at it as an insurance as an interest writer to an extent. You're also looking at it from now. You're having a better understanding from a kind of a safety perspective. So how are you taking a look at this? How are you tying all these things together? Right. Well, the thing that I discovered about risk management and this is not not as true today when I first started looking at it, a lot of risk managers were really claims, people, all they did was pay claims and they as I'm sure you're familiar right? The five steps of the risk management process, identification analysis, control finance and then monitoring the process. Right? So people were decent identifying they were okay at analyzing. They were typically poor at controlling and they were awesome at financing. That was really the key focused a lot on that. And it was like, well if you prevent them, they don't cost you anything. So the financing piece gets a ton easier. And so that's, that's really where I think the risk control piece, the lost control piece plays into it and most people in risk management now are much much better, more well rounded that they focus a lot on trying to prevent the claims right? And the analysis piece, uh, you know what's the important ones to, to start with, right? You want to get the low hanging fruit, the stuff that's pretty easy to deal with. But at the same time, you can't ignore the catastrophic laws, right? And while it is very frequent, it's very, it can be extremely severe. The kind of severe that puts you out of business forever or put you in prison. Well, I mean, I would imagine that throughout your career you've seen some pretty interesting things and the reason that I say this is because I remember years and years ago when you were sitting inside of a of a safety meeting, you might be talking at at a time of fatality events, catastrophic events. I mean, there are the we're at portions now where people are talking about ankle springs. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm glad that we're talking about ankle sprains and now fatalities. But it's just amazing on how that industry has changed over the years. So at this point when you're going through this and you realize this, when do you say, Okay, I got an idea? I've done my, my other two books. Now, I have an idea for a novel perspective of risk management. Right? That that's come about really fairly recently. I started on this late 2020. Yeah, yeah, extremely recently. And then uh, finished it up in early 2021 put it aside because I was actually working on the third book to the first two, right there in there in this series and I let my brother read it and he said, dude, I think you're on to something here. He said, I like your first two books. But I think this one has a little more universal appeal. He says you need to stop working on that third one and get this one published. So that's what led to that. But I think in a bigger question. Um, as I became a little more comfortable as an author, it was more what would be appealing? What where can I use my professional experience to write something that I think would be appealing and fun and interesting to people. And also as I've told other people, you know, how many books do you read where the lost control professional gets to be the hero. This is jay allen show, Hey come in real close, I got something to share with you. Not everybody has a beautiful head, you know what I'm saying? Not everybody can pull off the shaved head. Look, hey, I'm not digging on people. I'm just bringing it up. Some people out there are losing their hair. Now, I want to tell you about my friends and keeps two out of three men will experience some form of hair loss by the time that they are 35 more than 50 million men in the US suffer from male pattern baldness. There are only two FDA approved medications that can prevent hair loss. 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Well, I got something for you if you haven't hung out with us yet at safety FM dot com. I'm gonna inquire due to do so you have to come out to safety. FM you can come hang out with all kinds of safety professionals. Some are safety professionals. Some are just people that are talking about safety, but we want to do it in a format that makes it fun and entertaining if you're kind of trying to figure out what the FM portion is. Well, we're at radio station and also a podcast network. You come out, hang out, listen to my show that J Allen show you listen dot com cleaned with a pre accident investigation, blame J. Hoffman with the safety pro the hot nerd sam Goodman. Just to name a few on what could be found on the station. Different things for different people trying to bring safety in an entertaining form. Safety FM dot com. Go to the website, download the app and carry it with you all day long. Safety FM dot com we'll be waiting for you. We are back on the J Allen show on safety FM. Right. And that that's part of the question I'm going to for sure, because it's such a different approach. That's the thing that I found amazing, because most of the people that are out in the industry, if we're talking about it, they want to write it from a perspective of look, well, science and what they're and what they're trying to do, and even some of them are not even science based, they're just going to just go with it. So, when you decide to do the decision of novel based, I mean, you're doing this for work, meaning not the writing piece, you're doing this for work is doing a you know, you're going out there uh as a risk manager, but now all of a sudden you're doing this as well as writing as a novel. So, did you lay heavily heavily on your past experience? Did you? Did you, kind of, um the part of it become as it went along? Yes, very much so. Uh in fact, I included towards the end of the book, the main character, his name is Rock Cartwright, I just love that name. Uh he becomes an independent consultant and so I needed a way for him to meet back up with with a lady friend of his right who's also in the business, she's a producer and a broker. And I thought, okay, well, I'll have a meet up in an account. So I thought about an account that would be fun, but one that I had seen before. So I used a real life experience and uh that made it very easy for me to talk about that and really have some fun with Rock doing the risk management consultation with them and the agent being there at the same time. Right? So, you kind of bring both of those worlds together and throughout the book, there's various parts where we uh talk about the five steps and the risk management process. I did manage to actually get those in there, if anybody has seen one of my presentations in the last several years on safety or risk management or whatever, I always bring that in there. And so I was excited that I was able to get that in there now. I think it's only in, in the preface, but still it's in there, baby, it's like craig, it's in there. So a couple of things. Um number one, why did you use a different name as the writer of the book? Why did you decide to go with, what is it Sloane Must question, Is that the way? Yeah, yeah, that's a great question. And I'm gonna take you back to the beginning of this conversation when I said my first goal was to start a book, okay, never to publish it. And so, um from a marketing perspective, that has not been the smartest move to have a pen name different than mine, but part of that I think was really because if I failed, I didn't want to fail a scott, I fail at something. I love the honesty, I love the honesty. You know, I'll tell you right away what came to mind and this is going very, very old. Um I thought about the old movie by old movie by Stephen King by the name of the dark half, where he had a writer that he would become the character became a separate writer to write the book and I was like, so are you going into like, these changes? So you decided to use the pen name? But now when you try to tell people, hey, I've written these previous books and they go, but hold on, that's not the books that that's not the book that's on on the cover. But I mean the last name is to an extent. So what do they tell you? Um you know, a couple of people ask questions. But really it's only an issue when it comes to marketing because I, you know, I'm trying to utilize the network, I have made professionally, you know, with trying to merge that then with the writing and so it makes the marketing a little bit tougher, but I can tell you and this is on the book cover to I used that name because Sloane is obviously my last name. I threw an E on the end of it because that sounded more like a first name. And then my question is my mother's maiden name and my mom was the writer in the family. She used to work for newspapers, you know, back when there were such things as newspapers. She worked for small. You mean there wasn't you physically would hold the tanja, not the digital stuff that's out there. No, no, no the actual writing, you know, where you would, you would turn in an actual written copy of something, not an electronic copy and then the editor would go through it and go that, you know, whatever when they used to verify news information. Oh yeah, I remember that. I said, I know I was the one that said it, you're exactly. Right. So that's kind of a A tribute to my mom who passed back in '05. So unfortunately she never got to see it in my books. And, and I hope she would be proud of. But you know, you never know. So, so so was that part of the driving force on wanting you to be an author when you were taking a look back at it when you said, hey, I want to write a book. Was that part of the, was that part of what you wanted to do because of the inspiration of your mother? Or was this something that you've always wanted to do because you want to do the storyteller? No, I think it's more just the storytelling and that that's why I enjoy the novel as as opposed to, you know, writing like a self help book, a leadership book, a business book, things of that nature. First of all, you gotta do a ton of research on them, right? And I did, I've done two master's program. So I've done all the research. I really wanna do. I get it. I believe me. I get it. I understand. Yeah. So, so with a novel, I mean you still do some research but it doesn't have to be nearly in depth, right? You just kind of touch the surface of it. And so that part was far more appealing. But what I really found interesting was how much fun it is to just make stuff up, you know, create characters out of nothing now, of course all create all characters for writers are based on people they've known combinations of people they've known and things like that, but you get to make them do whatever you want. You know, you can make them wonderful, you can make them horrible, you can make them both somewhere in between. And that was just a lot of fun there to be able to just make people do whatever you want them to do. So is there somebody inside of the Risk manager book that you know, personally that if they picked up the book, they will recognize pieces of themselves inside of there. Oh, you're smiling big. I'm almost scared now on this answer. Yes, No. Yes. The answer to that is yes. And and the reason I'm smiling is because I just got in another review on the book and it was a gentleman I used to work with years ago and uh it's kind of an inside joke, but part of the review said it's almost as these characters are so well developed, it's almost as though I worked with them and he and I did work together right? And so yes, there are definitely characters in the risk manager based on people I've worked with in the insurance industry, but but beyond that, I think they're the kind of characters that if you've ever had a job, you could relate to sum up, right? Because the antagonist in it is a sociopathic ceo who will stop at nothing to get elected governor of texas, who hasn't had a boss that they thought was crazy, wasn't crazy, right? I mean, everybody's had that boss if you had a job, right, Right. And then there's other characters along, whether some politicians and everybody has their own opinion of a politician, right? So, I think those are the kind of things that people can relate to, whether they've taken my path in life or they've taken a different one. So, when you when you look at this overall book and you go, okay, so, we have this first novel of the risk manager out, Do you think there'll be there'll be another one? There'll be a follow up with you, a different point of view. Maybe a maybe a different job scenario or different titling Yes, the working title for book too, and I'm just now beginning to sketch out the outlines is the broker, and it will be taken more from the perspective of the main character, Rocks love interest jasmine, then it will be rocks part of that reason is because I'm debating this to whether to kill robert. Like that's one part of the book, you know, and scott and it's kind of dumb, but at the same time, that's what people love about novel is, you know, bad things happen to people. And uh one of the, one of my favorite writer, Stephen King, he is one of his mantra is Kill your darlings, no matter what Kill your darlings, right? Don't don't fall in love with one character so much that you refused to let anything tragic happen to him because that's not life, tragic things happen to people all the time. So, I mean, I don't I don't know what direction I'm going to go with that, but that's that's kind of why I'm thinking take it a little more from her perspective because that gives me way more freedom to do whatever I want with the book. Well, I mean, the interesting part is that you're inside of this scenario that you're inside of a very interesting industry when you're talking about risk management, where you can do a lot of interesting stuff, especially even the way if you decided to kill off the main character or character for that fact in regards and when you're having the discussion and definitely giving a different perspective, especially the love interest point of view. I think that could actually attracts a different audience if one may say. Yeah, well, hopefully, so hopefully it won't be interesting to only people in the risk management and insurance field. Um so that's the plan. Anyway, we'll see how it turns out. So in regards, I see that you're available on Kindle? I see that you're available on amazon, have you thought about going into the audiobook side of the world? Because that seems to be kind of some of the popular things that we're seeing nowadays as well. Yes, in fact, I've had two friends try and get me to do it already. Um and it actually is relatively simple. I've got a friend that runs a couple of Youtube channels and I've done interviews with him and he goes, dude, I can help you with all the editing, The editing software is not expensive and it's not difficult, what it is is very time consuming. Oh yes, I believe me, I know, I know like that's probably something you can really relate to is the amount of time it takes to edit, especially, you know, an entire book. So yes, I've considered it. But paying somebody to do it at this point is cost prohibitive because, you know, you you've got a lot of experience, I'm sure in that that's not cheap to pay a professional to not only read it, but then edited what I always tell people is most most of your audience members are going to want to hear it from your perspective, It's not really going to they don't want a professional quote unquote reader to do it. I mean they want to they want to get something special from the author, at least the ones that I've been able to see or interact with, They always seem that that's what they want opposed to it being professional voice actor I interact with with a book author quite often. Um and the gentleman actually had 11 of his books, they actually brought in this um this former this former actor um and he's a professional english speaker. If one may say what he sounded like he straight out of harry potter, let's put it that way. It does not, it does not match anything on what he sounds like. So I so I was like, I don't know if that's gonna work out too well, yeah, I would love to do it. I just working full time writing on the side and then trying to edit that. Yeah, I just haven't jumped off into that yet, but I have had several people help man. I would really love it if your book was on audio because because, you know, in my business we travel along and they're like, where I they do most of their reading or listening, right, is when they're traveling, but but I just haven't bounced off into that yet. So maybe motivate me to do it. Maybe it's time to lean on the friend, you know what I'm saying in regard to the one that has a Youtube channel, b like what do I need to get it set up? The most important part is getting your voice on some kind of track there, but that's gonna be, that's gonna be the important part of getting that audiobook done. So scott is people want to know more information about you and the book and where they can pick it up work and they go to find out more info. The best place to go is my website www dot sloane met kristen dot com. So that's S L O A N E M C Q U I S T O N dot com. And then are you, are you pretty active on linkedin? If they start trying to get information there, will they be able to find you as well? Yes, they'll be able to find me. But under linkedin, I'm scott slung they won't let you have two identities on linkedin now facebook will let you have to and so I, I have a slow my question and a Scots loan on facebook, I haven't jumped off into the twittersphere twitter's fear sphere. Who I can't say it. Yeah, there's so many different social media platforms that it's sometimes it's extremely difficult to keep on all the different ones that are available out there. Well scott, I really do appreciate you coming on to the show today. Well, hey, it has been my honor J and I didn't thank you so much for giving me an opportunity and if I can be of any help to you in the future in any way. Please just let me know
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