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How Insurance & Technology's Elite 8 Balance Work and Life

In today's highly charged insurance market, the pressure on technology executives can be extreme. Here's how some of the 2012 Elite 8 leaders balance their work and personal lives.

By the Dock of the Bay

Grange Insurance CIO Michael Fergang likes to spend downtime on the water. He and his wife own a home on a lake. "My favorite thing is just sitting on the dock and hearing the waves hit it," he says.

Michael Fergang

But Fergang also enjoys various water sports, including fishing, kayaking, jet skiing and his "new passion" -- stand-up paddle boards, which he characterizes as the fastest growing sport in the country. "It looks like a big surfboard, and you paddle around on it," Fergang explains. "It's great exercise for the core."

Where Inspiration Strikes

Some executives go on retreats to clear their heads, but for Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance SVP and CIO Greg Clancy, the path to clarity is much closer to home. "Cutting the grass is one of great things in my life," he declares. "I do my best thinking when I'm cutting the grass."

Pushing a lawnmower also gives Clancy a tangible sense of accomplishment. "When I get done with it I say, 'Wow, I accomplished that!'" he notes. "When you're in a position [where] you accomplish things through other people, that's a great thing." Clancy says he lets his mind "go on auto pilot" and might "think about 11 other things while mowing the grass" -- sometimes not even realizing he's finished his task.

[For more on the 2012 Elite 8, see Introducing I&T’s Elite 8 of 2012]

Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio

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