Our governance

“Our pledge to our shareholders is that we will build the financial value of our company.”

Since the company went public in 1986, Markel has maintained a commitment to building the financial value for our shareholders through the “zealous pursuit of excellence.” To that end, the Markel Style guides us to work hard, to adapt and innovate, and to be honest and fair in all our dealings.

We have adopted a forever and right now mindset that informs our day-to-day actions and our long-term approach to the development, sustainability, and governance of Markel as one of the world’s great companies.

The forever and right now mindset extends to our leadership committees, Markel’s Code of Conduct, communications to shareholders, and financial disclosures. Learn more in the sections below.

We think about your company in two distinct yet completely connected time horizons, namely, forever and right now.

Business, (and life) these days, resembles an all-out, full sprint, winner take all race, to adapt to the changes wrought by technology. We must continuously learn, and adapt to new conditions, adopt new technological tools, abandon obsolete business practices and systems, find new markets, develop new products, acquire new businesses, and succeed at every other challenge you can think of to continue to build Markel.

The emphasis on right now means we need to make appropriate changes and adapt to this way of doing business right now! There is no time for cherishing old ways and reminiscing about an idyllic past. . . . In prior eras the joke was that between faster, better, and cheaper, you could pick any two. Now, that is no longer the case. We need to be able to provide all three.

In the midst of this urgency, we have a profound competitive advantage. Namely, we think about each of the right now decisions in the context of forever. We’re not making decisions for the expediency of getting through one day. We are thinking about them in the context of what is the best decision we can make today in order to build the long term durability and profitability of the Markel Corporation forever.

Excerpted from the 2016 Annual Shareholders’

Our Code of Conduct reminds Markel employees how we conduct business and how we work with each other and our partners. Our strong ethical culture serves as a solid foundation for success. Suppliers, customers, and shareholders can rely on us to do the right thing.

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