The Irish Broker Association (IBA) made an approach to the Professional Insurance Brokers Association (PIBA) whereby their 300 strong membership might amalgamate with PIBAS nearly 800. They all went into a room and entered negotiations. This wasn’t a case where one had a gun to another’s head, it was something that would be of mutual benefit to all brokers in Ireland, because brokers, unlike almost any other industry, don’t have a single representative body.
So it makes total sense right? Of course it does! Standing as a united front and being able to ensure that members reach certain standards of operation, giving a voice to a multi-million euro industry, there is such great scope that I figured ‘even if we have to get over 75% in favour we’ll still be able to do it’. And we were.
Actually, PIBA were, the votes came in and in a voice of unity we voted with an 80% majority to go ahead and make one proper representative body.
The IBA on the other hand, who actually made the approach for all of this to happen showed the condition of their house, they – after making the negotiations and being the ones who suggested it – lost with a 70% against and only 30% for!
I’m not accepting any invites to their house for a sleep over…
Wouldn’t it be nice if we had one governing body in brokerage instead of three? (because there is also the mortgage specific one called IMAf) Yes it would. Can’t we all just get along? Well, PIBA showed their true colours by saying ‘Yes, we can do it, If Gerry Adams and Ian Paisley can sit at the same table so can we’.
Its just a pity that we don’t all have that attitude.