WBOC’S LEADING WOMAN: Allison Haslam
BY ALYSSA LAFARO | PHOTO BY CINDY BELL
“It happened by accident really,” explained Allison Haslam, who was recently promoted to a vice president position at Primerica in East Syracuse this past January. Before moving her way up the hierarchal job ladder at the largest private financial services company in the North America, Haslam was in love with her job as a high school chemistry teacher. So, what happened?
“I loved teaching. I thought I’d always be a teacher.” But in the summer of 2006, Allison joined Primerica part time to make a little extra cash while she was off from school. By the end of that summer, however, Allison was completely in love with not only the company, but with the interactions she experienced in working with families who needed financial assistance. “It’s not so much about the money,” said Allison. “It’s about the differences we make for our clients.”
Over the course of the next year (2006-07) Allison decided that she was going to leave her full-time teaching job and pursue a full-time career at Primerica. And in the fall of 2007, Allison attended her very first meeting with the Women’s Business Opportunities Connections. She fell in love with the culture of WBOC right away. The welcoming environment opened Allison’s eyes to the entrepreneurial spirit and encouragement she desired to make the switch into her newly chosen career path.
Just as Allison found success at Primerica and moved up the ranks to a vice presidential spot, she also made transitions in her title at WBOC. After serving on various committees at WBOC for a few years, Allison eventually took over the position of vice president of programs in 2010. Her successes there led to her nomination and eventual acceptance as vice president of the entire organization. And she hopes one day to ultimately become president.
Allison succeeds at Primerica and at WBOC because of the skills she has developed from teaching and her passion for people. Her responsibilities at Primerica involve teaching families how to become properly protected, debt free, and financially independent. “My job is to right the wrongs of the industry because a lot of people can, unfortunately, get taken advantage of in the financial world because they don’t have this basic education. I fell in love with the company way back when I first started because of that educational piece.” Primerica’s goals are not too different from those of WBOC, which strives to educate women about the opportunities and resources available to them in the business world. “The purpose of WBOC is to provide education for women in business. It’s to help them develop a network of people they can trust and that will help them get in touch with the people who can help them further their business.”
In the future, Allison would like to see growth both for herself in her job at Primerica and at WBOC. At work, she hopes to move out of the location she is currently in and open up her own Primerica office, at which she would be completely in charge. In regard to WBOC, Allison strives for membership growth. She also expects to make women more aware of the benefits and resources WBOC offers. “Serving as the vice president of WBOC is about being able to keep the organization going and giving back to the organization for what they’ve been able to do for me,” said Allison. “I would not have been able to grow my business the way I did without WBOC.”
The WBOC is a local non-profit organization that has been providing support to women and access to innovative events and workshops for 20 years. Whether running our own business, working for an employer or launching a new endeavor, women are connected through their entrepreneurial mindset. The WBOC and Syracuse Woman Magazine are exclusive partners and aim to promote each other’s missions. For information on how to become a member, visit www.wboconnection.org.