Employee Spotlight: Walt Isler

Walt Isler Employee Spotlight

What’s your role at Parker, Smith & Feek?

I am a Principal of the firm and Account Executive in the Construction Practice Group responsible for providing risk management assistance and insurance programs to respond to the risk exposures of my clients.

What inspired you to start a career in the insurance business?

I stumbled into it. I came out of the Army having worked as an armor officer and wanted to start a career in business. I developed many transferable skills that allowed me to excel in business, such as acting as a leader, managing others, achieving goals, and adapting to a rapidly changing environment. I began my career in insurance working in claims and grew my career from there.

What’s exciting about the construction industry right now?

The economy is improving; contractors are busy with lots of new projects. I’d say the most excitement right now is around the evolvement of traditional design-build to integrated project delivery methods. The project owner, design team, and contractor collaborate for the design and construction of the project sharing the risk/reward.

I really enjoy getting to work with clients on the ground level to crossing the finish line.

What is the most valuable advice you ever received?

Your reputation and character matter the most. Always be honest, cognizant of your character, kind to others, and true to your word.

Do you volunteer with any organizations or charities? Tell me about your volunteer work with Silver Lake Soccer Club.

I played soccer in the Army and once my son was old enough to start playing, the team he was on needed coaches. I started volunteering to teach him how to compete through sports. The kids needed to learn to go out, try their hardest, and do their best no matter what the outcome. Similar to life, they have to compete within the rules, maintain honesty, win with class, and lose with grace.

Twelve years later I’m still coaching.

Have you had one mentor who’s been most influential in your career?

Greg Walsh. He was a construction account executive at the firm when I first started. He was great at advising on how to best take care of clients, he was an excellent communicator, and he taught me what was expected from working with Parker, Smith & Feek. I learned what it takes to be successful.

What is something your co-workers would be surprised to learn about you?

When I was younger, I learned how to play multiple instruments. I can play the guitar, trumpet, and accordion.

If you could change one thing about the insurance industry, what would it be?

I’d like to raise the levels of expertise and professionalism across the industry to make insurance less of a commodity and more as a valued service to give better advice to clients.

PROFILE:

Hometown: Port Orchard, Washington

Favorite vacation spot: Arizona desert

Favorite author(s): Ken Follett and J.R.R. Tolkien

Favorite sports team(s): Seahawks, Mariners, and Sounders

Favorite hobby: Skiing, biking, and golfing

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