Monday I DON'T sleep well. Maybe it's a guilty conscience. I lie awake wondering why on earth I have a guilty conscience! My first meeting is to defend the insurance industry's attitude towards disabled drivers at a Legco Finance Panel public hearing. I have recently been elected chairman of the General Insurance Council, and one of my primary aims will be to raise the profile of the industry. It cannot get much lower in terms of public perception. (I think that is why I like to stand next to airline representatives at parties. Everyone has a horror story about them as well - including me!) Anyway, Mr Martin Lee, Ms Emily Lau et al give a very fair hearing to our promises to put the Disabled Drivers' Club in touch with the many insurers willing to write such business on preferential terms. It is almost lunchtime when our press release has been finalised. In subsequent days I look in the press for our side of story, to no avail. One can only assume that discrimination sells newspapers better than the non-discrimination. The afternoon is relatively quiet as I attempt to catch up with telephone calls and paperwork that came in during the visit of my London-based general manager at the end of last week. The evening is spent quietly at home with my family. I am responsible for Commercial Union's offices in Hongkong, Macau, Taiwan and China development. Over the last four weekends I have either been away or have had business visitors, so I value the evening. Tuesday This morning I chair the monthly meeting of the General Insurance Council. It is a pity that not enough of the 120 members are prepared to get actively involved. It is time-consuming, but vital, and jobs need to be shared around. The meeting runs smoothly through the burning issues of the day, not least of which is increasing government legislation. Rather like democracy, it seems as if there is a major rush to introduce measures before 1997 that arguably should have been done long ago. If there was no need to do them before, why do them now? We sponsor a lunch for a worldwide conference of insurance brokers from the New World Indo Suez Group. Getting your business connections to pay for lunches and dinners certainly lessens the financial burden of conferences. However, there is no such thingas a free lunch, so delegates have to listen to a presentation on the virtues of Commercial Union - lucky they are good friends as well! In the afternoon I have an in-house meeting on our computer system. On Tuesday nights I play soccer for HKFC Rovers, but tonight I have an ankle injury to rest, so I have to go through the purgatory of watching the lads play. Can it really be that bad when I'm playing? At least we win. Wednesday I spend part of the morning looking at the latest car theft figures, which show a pleasing downward trend since the arrest of the ''Customs gang'' and implementation of new measures. The trouble is that thieves are getting more discerning, and nearly all the cars stolen over the last few weeks have been new-series Mercedes valued at $1-2 million each. The insurance industry made significant underwriting losses in 1990 and 1991. The 1992 figures are not yet published, but are likely to be even worse. The irony is, however, that while major motor dealers make huge profits, it is the insurance industry getting the bad press. Lunchtime is spent clothes shopping in Central to replace those in my suitcase still trying to find its way back from Beijing from three weeks ago. I wonder who insures Dragonair! I have a meeting in the afternoon with a loss adjuster who has come out of retirement in New Zealand to set up again in Hongkong. Loss adjusters are impartial people, although paid for by insurers. They investigate claims and, in many cases, negotiate settlement. There is an abundance of good-quality adjusters here although the unfair picture in my mind is one of vultures awaiting Hongkong to be struck by a major typhoon. After work, I meet my wife, Sue, and we head out to dinner with a visitor from our regional office in Singapore. Thursday The morning begins with a difficult meeting with an insurance broker and my Singapore visitor, regarding a contentious claim. My view of claims is that, provided the cover is there, they should be settled swiftly and fairly. However, those that are not covered, particularly if there is any suggestion of fraud, which there is not in this case, should be politely declined. Life is not that simple, and we agree to reconvene. I attend a meeting of the fledgling Insurance Agents Registration Board. Under provisions of Self Regulation, those insurance intermediaries that are not members of the Confederation of Insurance Brokers must register with the Federation of Insurers as an agent. It is all designed to give policyholders an avenue of redress in case of agents' misbehaviour. This is a major exercise. Nobody knows how many insurance agents there are, but there could be as many as 20,000. I have a very convivial lunch with some competitors in the boardroom of a well-known life insurance company with a general insurance arm. I could fit half my office into their boardroom. In the afternoon I get together with my public relations consultants to discuss this month's programme. I am a great believer in the power of PR as long as it is kept firmly focused in the direction that you, as the boss, want it to go. Dinner is at home tonight with my Hongkong operations manager, Mr Ken Reid, his wife and his parents. They are Scottish and I manage to understand most of what is talked about. Friday Our lease in the Landmark is up for renewal at the end of February next year and I am nervous of the press reports of the enormous increases in rents in Central. I like where we are, but I am sure we would be equally happy in Wan Chai or Causeway Bay if the price is right. Lunch is with Mr Alex Wong, my predecessor as chairman of the GIC, and Ms Y. Y. Tang, executive director of the Federation of Insurers, who does all the real work in keeping the industry together. We have a meeting immediately after lunch with the Acting Insurance Commissioner. Their plan is to have all insurance companies keep assets in Hongkong to meet Hongkong liabilities. In theory, this sounds reasonable, and obviously the protection of policy-holders' interests is paramount. I have a meeting with a Financial Consultant to look at my own affairs. I gaily dispense insurance advice every day which I hope is accurate, but I never seem to be quite as lucky receiving advice from financial consultants! (Don't call me, I'll call you. . .) Time for an infrequent hair-cut on the way home. The woman shampooing tells me to relax, and I just about manage it on the third rinse.