Since moving her family to South Africa, Delphine has certainly followed her purpose. “I’ve been lucky to get support from many people at Allianz, so now I see my role as a platform to help build others up. You may say ‘insurance is just insurance’, but if the business is thriving and we bring value back to shareholders, then we can hire more women and build more people like me.”
In addition to being a role model, mentor and champion for females in insurance, Delphine recently launched the first Allianz Africa for Women Conference, bringing together high-potential female employees to network and support one another. Delphine described how, “While traveling across the region, I met many great women who were working in isolation within their countries. I felt we needed to bring them together so they could meet each other and gain exposure to the Allianz Group as a whole, to meet other strong women and access new opportunities.”
When Delphine encounters exceptional women, she offers some advice that served her well: “Women tend to be overly-humble – others see your talent and capability more than you do. So, surround yourself with people who think you can do it. Then, you need to believe them. If I tell you ‘I know you can do it’, then you need to believe me and go for it.”
As I wrapped up my conversation with this inspiring female leader, I realized the importance of her advice. While we often tell women to ‘Believe in yourself,’ we sometimes need to first find the right people to listen to – and then believe what they tell you – so you can find your true purpose.
For more inspiring stories from women leaders in financial services visit home.Kpmg/mindthegap.
More about Delphine Traoré Maïdou: Delphine is the Regional Chief Operating Officer with Allianz Africa, part of the Allianz Group, providing personal and corporate insurance services in 17 countries. Appointed to this role in 2017 to oversee development of Allianz Group’s pan-African business, Delphine served previously as CEO of Allianz Global Corporate & Speciality (AGCS) Africa and held that role for six years. Born in Burkina Faso, Delphine studied and began her career in the United States. After graduating from the University of Pittsburgh, she worked at Ohio Casualty Group of Insurance as a Senior Commercial Multi-Lines Insurance Underwriter, Marketing Representative and Regional Underwriting Manager. In 2005, she joined AGCS Canada and held the positions of Liability Underwriter and Head of Market Management. In 2012, Delphine was appointed CEO of AGCS Africa, becoming one of the first female CEOs of a financial institution in South Africa. In addition to her work at Allianz Africa, Delphine is President of the Insurance Institute of South Africa and a member of the African Risk Capacity’s Outbreak & Epidemic Advisory Panel.