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A letter to a captive insurance agent that is considering going independent

Mon, November 20, 2017 10:05 AM | Billy R. Williams, PhD. (Administrator)

I am going to keep it real with you based on 15 years of investing in agencies and helping agents to grow their business.

1.    I have never seen a struggling captive agent, become a successful independent agent. The issues that keep an agent from being successful as a captive (poor time management, lack of staff accountability and control, weak marketing and prospecting practices, weak use of available technology, etc.) don’t suddenly go away when an agent goes independent, in fact because of the amount of carriers you have to keep happy, they usually get worse.

2.    The basic operations of running an insurance agency are the same regardless of being captive or independent. You have to:

  • market and prospect for customers on a consistent basis,
  • quote, sell, and bind based on what’s best for the customer, not just price
  • effectively utilize technology to communicate, track information and records, and manage your data,
  • have set processes that the entire team is responsible for consistently performing,
  • have a pay structure that rewards consistency and success and has built-in repercussions for not following the agency’s processes and standards,
  • hire staff that does what you need them to do, the way they are supposed to do it, and not just do what they want to do.
  • have a leadership style that creates a culture of positivity, success, and accomplishment in the agency and that holds staff accountable for consistent processes and actions (This is the umpteenth time I have used some form of the word consistent. That should tell you something!)
  • be self-disciplined enough to outsource tasks and roles that are important for the success of the agency, but that you are not willing to do or hold someone else accountable for doing

3.    Success is not based on the number of carriers you can offer a prospect or customer, or the cheapest price you can get them for insurance. Trust me, the rates are not all that different from captive to independent carriers

4.    The same issues that cause an agent to struggle or fail as a captive are only magnified as an independent

5.    In summary: You have to commit to becoming a really good agency leader in order to succeed as an independent agency owner. If you just want to be able to sell more insurance policies, get a job as a producer in an independent or captive agency, and avoid the agency owner headaches.

6.    If you want to commit to becoming a good agency leader with the focus of building a great insurance agency with effective, consistent processes that would make it easy for you to acquire or merge an outside book of business into your operations, our mentoring program will work for you.

7.    If you are not mentally or emotionally ready to take on the challenges I have explained, joining Inspire a Nation Business Mentoring, will only waste your time and money.

Dr. Billy R. Williams

President – Inspire a Nation Business Mentoring & Williams Family Investment Group

www.inspireanation.org

“Wealthy people make complicated things seem simple; Most poor people make simple things unnecessarily complicated”

Billy R. Williams, Ph.D.


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