During Women’s History Month, we began profiling a series of National Life leaders to hear their experiences navigating both life and the financial industry as a woman. We’ve decided to keep that momentum going…so stay with us as we continue to shine the spotlight on leadership.
The following interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Prior to joining National Life Group, Linda Han worked at various nationally known law firms for 22 years and simultaneously worked in real estate field as an investor and as an agent for over 20 years. These invaluable work and investment experiences have well prepared me to become a financial professional to help clients understand their financial health.
What is your career pathway to where you are now…?
I joined National Life Group as an Agent in 2015, and roughly a year and half later was promoted to a Managing Director role. I held my Managing Director position for three years, and beginning this month, advanced into our Associate GA (General Agent) program with plans to be a GA in the future. I would be the first Asian Affiliated GA in the company, and the first Asian woman.
What do you like most about what you do at National Life?
I am very proud to be working with a company that allows me to share its values with my team members and clients. These values are the things that you can’t always find at other insurance companies. National Life is also unique in that it is full of innovative concepts and products. We do a great job at easing our client’s experience during contracting; we conduct EZ underwriting in unprecedented ways, and we have a foreign nationals program that has realistic requirements. I also preach a lot about the Do Good mentality, which is also reflected in our products — for example, the charitable matching gift rider.
Has the industry landscape changed during your career? If so, what changes have you seen?
With longer life expectancies, living benefits have changed our industry quite rapidly. ABRs (Accelerated Benefits Riders) have become increasingly important when planning and deciding upon coverage, and thankfully, the industry has grown to accommodate them.
Are there any women who have inspired you in your life?
My mother. She immigrated to this country in the early 1970’s with no English skills and worked hard to become a successful business woman. She is a strong, dedicated woman who isn’t afraid to take risks. She has always believed that there are lessons to be taught for her children and she is a living example. I also admire that she has always prioritized providing for those in need. Whenever I am struggling with my business, I think of my mom and try to emulate what she would have done.
What advice would you give to young women who are just beginning their careers?
Life is what you make out of it. I would never have made it this far if I didn’t believe in myself. You have to believe in yourself. Confidence is the key to achieving your dreams. Have faith in yourself.
What leadership quality do you most admire and aspire to?
I love the servant leadership qualities that National Life embodies. The ability for a leader to balance between vision, performance, and integrity are leadership qualities I admire and that I see this in my GA John Scarcella all the time. It’s important to ask yourself the question: “What tools are you using to get to your goals?” I believe integrity is the core of all of this. Integrity is the most important quality in leadership.
Do you have a cause or a favorite “Do good” passion?
I’m passionate about educating and serving the Asian American community. I drive between 1,500-1,800 miles every week because I commit myself to going wherever I am needed by somebody in the Asian American community. I want to broaden the understanding of offerings and opportunities for Asian Americans.
What attracted you to National Life and what would you tell someone who is considering an opportunity with us?
The opportunity with this company is a special one. National Life has a long, successful and compassionate history that is focused on its stakeholders.
Any other words of wisdom that you’d like to share?
It’s a very competitive world out there, and that increases every day. Being with a company where leaders can be proactive about the future is the key to survival. National Life Group is definitely the carrier to be with – both for ourselves and the ones we care for.
Payment of Accelerated Benefits will reduce the Cash Value and Death Benefit otherwise payable under the policy. Receipt of Accelerated Benefits may be a taxable event, may affect your eligibility for public assistance programs, and may reduce or eliminate other policy and rider benefits. Please consult your personal tax advisor to determine the tax status of any benefits paid under this rider and with social service agencies concerning how receipt of such a payment will affect you.
Riders are supplemental benefits that can be added to a life insurance policy and are not suitable unless you also have a need for life insurance. Riders are optional, may require additional premium and may not be available in all states or on all products. This is not a solicitation of any specific insurance policy.