At last year’s Women in Insurance Awards, Charlotte Ainsworth was awarded the Most Inspiring Returner accolade. It was an evening dedicated to recognising those women whose contribution to the insurance industry has been truly exceptional in many different ways.
After a 14-year career break, Charlotte returned to work as a financial claims accountant at Crawford in 2021. Having left her initial career in project management to have her first child, Charlotte retrained as an interior designer before having three more children then returning to university to study law.
Building a new career in Law with four children was tricky, however, the pandemic opened a world of new opportunities as more firms embraced flexible working. “Suddenly roles which I never could have considered became viable, and I took the leap with Crawford,” Charlotte explained.
Charlotte admits the first six months of her return to work was “daunting and at times uncomfortable”. However, since returning to Crawford, she has “squeezed a lot in”, completing her CILA certificate level and 12 ACA exams and more than halfway to becoming a chartered accountant.
“At the same time, I’ve been taking every opportunity to progress in my role,” she added. “I’ve been taking on more complex claims and building strong relationships with both my colleagues at Crawford and our clients.”
She has a particular interest in renewables and cyber claims and is passionate about supporting policyholders and small business owners by presenting and explaining often complex material in a way that is understandable.
Judges for the Women in Insurance Awards found Charlotte to be an “inspiration” and lauded her “drive and tenacity” for having studied, retrained, learned new skills and gained technical qualifications after 14 years out – all while raising four children.
Crawford clients were also highly supportive, with Lisa Wilson, Claims Handler at NFU Mutual, praising Charlotte’s “brilliant” service and customer outcomes.
Luke Essam, Claims Technical Specialist at CNA/Hardy, said Charlotte has been “a colossal help”, explaining: “Her ability to take what can be a particularly complicated subject matter and present in layman’s terms for insurers and our insured’s alike is key to achieving the correct outcome for all parties.”
Charlotte has demonstrated that having a non-traditional CV is not a barrier to success, adding, “I would love to inspire others in my position who are looking for a new challenge after having children.”
“I believe insurance is the perfect industry for a second or even third career as broad experience helps prepare you for a variety of claims,”
she continued. “I’ve discovered a passion for learning and look forward to progressing further in the industry.”