John began his national search practice in property and casualty insurance when he founded Burkholder Group, Inc. in Dallas in 1989. His background is tailor-made for insurance recruiting…senior executive experience with a major property and casualty carrier…extensive human resources expertise in high performance environments…educated as an industrial/organizational psychologist…conducted tens of thousands of evaluative interviews since 1975.
Prior to founding BGI, John was a senior officer for a Dallas-based subsidiary of Great American Insurance Company, an operating subsidiary of American Financial Group. He served there initially as senior vice president of human resources and administration and later took national profit and loss responsibility for one of the company’s three product groups. Great American became John’s first and longest-standing key account when he started his recruiting practice.
Throughout his corporate tenure, John was responsible for managing the search process for executive, managerial and professional level positions in both administrative and technical functions. His career prior to Great American included field and corporate employee and labor relations assignments with the Frito-Lay division of PepsiCo and with Vulcan Materials, a Fortune 500 company in the mining and chemical industries. He was also a co-founder of Berkeley Forums, a media relations firm which trained executives and politicians to handle media interviews under adverse conditions.
John earned a Master of Science degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from the University of Tennessee and his Bachelor of Arts from Wofford College.
Talman embarked on his career in national search after 25 successful years in the property and casualty insurance field. Throughout his tenure with industry leaders Liberty Mutual, Progressive, Hartford, and Kemper he was responsible for successfully identifying, hiring and developing talent in the claims, distribution, product management and pricing functions. His broad diversity in functional P&C roles and his leadership accomplishments prepared him exceptionally well for the executive search business.
During his career Talman’s proven abilities in strategic business analysis helped him design and execute streamlined processes for claims delivery on a national level that included a skills based hiring model. His proficiency at recognizing and evaluating talent was a key factor in building out regional product and pricing organizations. Reorganizing field sales operations to improve deployment and results demanded that he keenly evaluate individual competencies and address opportunities. Talman’s capability to distinguish aptitudes and character traits in his team was crucial in successfully implementing new product attributes and constructing a process and organization for re-launching a mature brand. He also led a national marketing department that reengineered field distribution and underwriting where acquiring high performance leaders was crucial to success.
Talman is a graduate of Mercer University. He has served on various industry boards and advisory committees, most recently The Partnership, a board of the National Association of Professional Insurance Agents.