Unum's success can be directly attributed to our nearly 10,000 employees throughout the U.S., the U.K. and Ireland. Our people are our greatest asset, and our ability to deliver on the promises we make to our customers and shareholders begins with our employees.

Because we have high expectations for our people, we start by giving them the tools and training to become — and remain — successful. We offer an array of programs to develop aspiring leaders and new managers, as well as to employees who want to expand their personal and professional skills. Our employees have responded by logging hundreds of thousands of learning hours to develop a broader understanding of our business, study changing customer needs or improve leadership skills and experience.

We have also continued to invest in our people by promoting an environment of performance through our incentive and recognition programs. With our Aspire recognition program, for example, we salute the hard work of top non-managers throughout the company with an annual development and training event at Walt Disney World in Florida. We also have a number of recognition opportunities for managers and others at every level of the company.

Additionally, we work hard to make sure employees understand the connection between their individual performance and Unum's overall success. We know that to remain competitive in today's business environment — while also enhancing our ability to meet the needs of our customers — we must continually challenge ourselves to raise the bar for performance. For that reason, we've recently placed an ever greater focus on employee leadership by reinforcing the understanding that leadership, and not just tangible results, is a key component of performance. We've also increased our focus on providing our management team with the resources to help lead this company into the future.

Last, we continue to create a positive work environment for our employees through our focus on things like wellness and healthy work-life balance. We're pleased that employee engagement remains at a high level, according to our work environment surveys, and that our commitment to employees has earned Unum such accolades as a "Best Place to Work in Insurance" as well as a top employer in our home states.

Without a doubt, our engaged and experienced workforce makes Unum an attractive long-term partner for our customers. They help us live up to our commitments to policyholders and shareholders alike by providing forward-thinking solutions backed by a strong and diverse company.