Profiles in Courage

Meet Butch

Butch PetersonName: Butch
Title: Product Manager
Years at Travelers: 10
Location: Hartford
Military Branch: U.S. Navy Reserve and U.S Navy Submarine Officer

I started my career at Travelers after earning my MBA degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and teaching at the Naval Submarine School in Groton, Conn. My first position at Travelers was as a member in the Information Technology Leadership Development Program (ITLDP).

The Opportunity to Learn and Lead

I applied for that ITLDP because I wanted the opportunity to learn in a rotational program. When I transitioned from the military, I wasn’t sure what kind of job was the best fit for me in corporate America. A rotation program helped me try a bunch of different things. I also wanted the opportunity to lead others, which was an essential part of the ITLDP. It was a good opportunity for me to begin using the skills I learned in the military in corporate America.

Throughout the last decade, I’ve continued to learn and lead at Travelers through various positions. My current role is product manager of the Western region for the Personal Insurance organization. My primary goal is to maximize our growth while maintaining our profitability. I manage a team of state product managers for the various states in the western part of the country. As a product manager, I’m always challenged to keep learning how we can best stay in-synch with the needs of our customers. And as the leader of my team, I’m making and implementing decisions about where to take the business to win in the marketplace.

Making the Transition

Making the transition from military life to corporate America was not difficult for me. There are many similarities between the two – including the focus on leading others and being part of an organization that is results-oriented. When you’re thinking about your career after the military, it’s important to understand your true passions. Are you more technical in nature? Are you more people-oriented? And you should take the time to think about the skills you acquired during the military that are essential for corporate America, including leadership abilities, influencing others, critical thinking and the ability to solve problems.

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