Karolina Furmanek grew up in a small village in Poland, hearing stories from her parents about their line of work: insurance. She was inspired by their example – and it quickly became apparent that this career choice would run in the family.

So, Karolina pursued a Master's degree in finance at the Warsaw School of Economics and in 2019, degree in-hand, she was ready for her next adventure.

While I was studying for my Master’s, I worked in the customer service team at an insurance company. While I enjoyed it, my opportunities for development were limited. That’s when I started to research surety, specifically at Allianz Trade.

What I found was exactly what I was looking for: a well-recognized company that offers huge scope for growth, and an industry that has almost endless career possibilities. 

Surety is a combination of all business areas – so whatever you like to do, you can find a job in surety. In this role, I believe you can engage in any project that you are interested in: If you’re good at negotiations, you can be a sales manager. If you enjoy working with numbers, you can be an analyst. If you are really detail oriented, you can be a commercial underwriter. And the list goes on! 

A company is a system of communicating vessels.

In other words: I am not alone. I have always been lucky enough to have very supportive people around me – like my parents, for example, who gave me the confidence to go after my goals.

Then, when I joined the surety industry, I had to learn basically everything from scratch. It was my colleagues who helped me on that journey. And, despite my limited experience, my managers at Allianz Trade trusted me and believed in my potential, right from the start.

I see this collaboration and cooperation in practice every day at Allianz Trade. Take our systems as an example. One of my colleagues noticed that I had a flair for picking up new tech, so they recommended me as a surety systems superuser. This role has given me huge respect for work that is not necessarily seen. Behind every well-functioning system, there is a team of people working hard for weeks – or even months – to make that happen.  

I would recommend working at Allianz Trade to anyone who wants to develop. I have been able to spread my wings and broaden my experience in a relatively short amount of time – and I’ve been supported the whole way. 

But remember: while there are huge opportunities here for professional and personal development – from training to relocation programs – you need to be ready for them. So, do your work to the best of your ability and don’t limit yourself to your assigned tasks. By being active, helpful and creative, you can be the driving force behind your own growth. 

On the work front, I want to improve my soft skills in teamwork and my managerial skills.

And personally, I aspire to continue embracing new experiences. When I was younger, I read a book that inspired me. It was about an architect who was afraid of change. Her solution? To go to the seaside whenever she felt anxious. I really identified with that character in that moment – and now I own a place on the Polish coast! When I go there, I find my solace, and it reminds me of my resolve: do not be afraid of change.  

Karolina Furmanek 
Senior Risk Underwriter
Allianz Trade in Poland