Before applying for her current position as VP of claims with Progressive, Tricia Griffith, a mother of six, called a family meeting at her home in Cleveland to discuss the possibility of pursuing her current position-one that would require more traveling and nights away from home. In that moment, she asked her family to trust in the lessons she had learned through her career: Stay focused on the moment, and embrace opportunities to push yourself beyond your comfort zone.

Griffith got her start as a claims rep trainee with Progressive, and in the insurance industry, by responding to a classified ad in 1998. "I just got in by happenstance. My plan was to work for a couple years and then get my MBA or do something different," she admits.

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