A CEO’s Insights

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Phil Kalin
Phil Kalin, CEO
Phil has served as the chief executive of both public and privately-backed companies, including large hospital systems, as well as organizations focused on health care data, technology and education.
  • Leadership
Oct 5, 2021
by Phil Kalin

At Pinnacol Assurance, the verdict is in: we will retain our current flexible working model for the foreseeable future. We came to this conclusion after extensive research and discussion with our teams. The process and findings were so rich, I think it’s valuable to share them. Beginning in June,…

  • Leadership
Sep 9, 2021
by Phil Kalin

It’s time for Colorado CEOs to lead the state’s way out of COVID.  I drafted this column in mid-August, before the FDA gave official approval (not just emergency authorization) to the Pfizer vaccine. I hope that by the time you read this, more of you will be requiring your staff and, in some cases…

  • General
Aug 4, 2021
by Phil Kalin

Unadulterated joy. That was the expression on the faces of more than 350 Pinnacol employees June 30 when we held a reunion picnic in the parking lot of our building. My expression was no different, and I can’t help but smiling again every time I think of that day. I’ve written a lot in this blog…

  • Leadership
Jul 8, 2021
by Phil Kalin

Transformation is more than just a current business buzzword. It’s an imperative for nearly every industry, whether product- or service-based. My company, like every single other insurance company, is no exception. Yet we have been challenged by that transformation, and I’ll wager that that, too,…

  • Leadership
Jun 3, 2021
by Phil Kalin

A show of (virtual) hands, please: how many of you are not grappling with how to evolve your company in the midst of disruption/competition in your industry, rapidly changing customer expectations and customer behaviors that are still being reshaped by the pandemic? I’ll take the liberty of…

  • Leadership
May 5, 2021
by Phil Kalin

When I talk to my peers these days, “culture” is the main topic I hear. Mostly, it comes with a strong bias that it requires people to be working together in a building. We all know, of course, that there’s more to the concept. But to be frank, I’ve fumbled sometimes in describing Pinnacol’s…

  • Leadership
Apr 7, 2021
by Phil Kalin

How did you mark the one-year anniversary of the COVID shutdown? At Pinnacol Assurance, we sent t-shirts to all our employees listing our company’s COVID-year statistics: 13 million emails; 1.8 million Gchat messages; 72,787 video calls. Our 655 team members (including 54 new hires over the year)…

  • Leadership
Mar 3, 2021
by Phil Kalin

For office-based companies like ours at Pinnacol, we’ve seen that remote work works pretty well. Now, as leaders, we’re all deciding what that means for office space, work configurations and work policies. At the core we wonder what model will best support cultures that attract the best people and…

  • Leadership
Feb 3, 2021
by Phil Kalin

Over decades as a CEO, I have never felt the need to share as many messages with my employees about public events and civic life as I have over the past year. COVID fallout, racial justice protests, the seditious siege of our nation’s capitol: all have prompted me to relay expressions of sadness,…

  • Leadership
Jan 7, 2021
by Phil Kalin

Now that COVID-19 vaccines have been developed, approved and made (in a limited fashion) available at breathtaking speed, there is a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. But it’s still a long way off. Virtually all of our companies will continue operating differently for months, maybe years, to…

  • Leadership
Dec 2, 2020
by Phil Kalin

COVID-19 is not a pandemic. No, I’m not a science denier. I am acknowledging that COVID is much more than a pandemic. It is a “syndemic” where the underlying disease dynamic is exacerbated by the intersection with social and political issues such as racism, poverty, health disparities and…

  • Leadership
Nov 4, 2020
by Phil Kalin

It’s been seven months since the coronavirus pandemic led companies like mine, with white collar workforces, to shift to almost entirely virtual work. As much as we all want the world to return to “normal,” many of us are adapting to remote work – and liking what we see. Can we make it our next…