An initiative to develop emerging talent within the UK insurance industry has been launched this week by insurance recruitment firm Mansion House Executive.

The programme, known as Talenthouse, will aim to identify the rising stars of the insurance industry and provide them with mentoring and coaching.

A panel of senior industry figures, including NIG managing director Charles Crawford and PBS Holdings chief executive Jonathan Davey, have agreed to act as mentors and one-on-one coaches. Amanda Blanc of Towergate is also backing the programme.

Marcella Cronin, Mansion House managing director, said the initiative was aimed at encouraging talented people to stay within the insurance industry.

"We hear too many stories of good people considering career opportunities outside of the industry where they feel there is more chance to develop and progress.

"We want to change this perception and focus on keeping talent and mould industry leaders of the future."

Mansion House is currently running a research programme to identify 30 people to take part. Three people have already been selected.

Cronin played down suggestions that companies would not want their top employees taking part for fear that they would be offered jobs by rivals.

"I hope companies won't poach [good staff]. This is not about recruitment."

NIG's Crawford said: "This is a real first for the industry. While many insurers run internal personal development programmes, Talent-house goes beyond this by providing direct access to advice from mentors with a wide range of experience.

"One of my key concerns is the fact that as an industry we need to be far better at developing and retaining great people."