For insurance agents who are looking to grow their book of business, it means venturing out into uncharted territory. You need to be willing to try new things. This can include staffing changes, changes in your marketing ideas, and changing how you do sales. To grow will require you stepping out of your comfort zone. You have to be willing to take chances and adapt along the way.
The first step to growing your business is to set goals. You need to set personal goals and agency goals. You need to clearly specify target goals that you want to meet. You need to map out what direction you want your agency to go. If you can’t commit to setting goals, your agency won’t be going anywhere and won’t grow like you envision. Every day you should take a moment and write down some goals you want to accomplish. At the beginning of the day is also a great time to review your long term goals that you have set. Have a check in and see how they are coming along and evaluate the progress that is being made. Set deadlines for yourself to be able to benchmark your success.
The greatest asset to your agency is your staff. They are the lifeblood of the agency. It is so important to invest in your employees. Right from the beginning makes sure that there are procedures in place that will help your employees get the continuing education that they will need. Your employees will represent your agency, and you want them to be your agency’s biggest fan. Employees should be compensated well. Make sure that they have the potential of earning bonuses. If your employees realize that the work they do will help the agency succeed and they are compensated for it, they will realize that their work and referrals will greatly benefit them and the agency. While money definitely motivates people, there are other ways to motivate your staff as well. Consider paying for seminars and training opportunities. By paying for their continued education you will be benefiting the employee and the agency. Whenever there is an industry or carrier sponsored training event, make sure you are able to bring as many people from your agency as possible. While every employee is valued and plays an important role, there are a few team members that are critical to having a successful agency. The operations manager is the person that makes sure that all of the interworking’s of the agency are running consistently. They help minimize any issues that may arise. This position typically resolves customer inquiries; they track down forms and payments, the track the sales team’s progress. They also make sure that any follow up actions happen in a timely manner. The claims manager will handle the details of every claim. They will follow up with customers, take photos if necessary, handle any rentals, and set up their clients with any mitigation processes. They will supervise any claim that happens and watch it from the beginning to the end. The office manager will handle inbound calls, process the forms, they will greet clients as they come into the office, and handle various clerical responsibilities. The accounting department will handle commissions, payroll and any financial matters within the agency. The sales team is the life force of the agency. These are the people who are responsible for getting new business and maintaining the business they currently have.
You need to figure out how to keep your agents motivated. How can you create a positive environment for your agency while motivating your employee’s day in and day out? Honesty is a huge factor. You need to make sure that your agents feel like they can ask any question and interact with you in an honest and genuine way. Keep your commitments and promises to you agents. You need to make sure that you’re building relationships. And your agents need to build relationships with their clients. Communication is very important in building relationships. Every employee at your agency has a different role. And every person has different talents. Make sure that you are utilizing each person’s talents. Having clear specifications for different jobs will encourage people to do the tasks that they are best equipped to deal with. Make sure that the agency knows the goals that they want to accomplish. When there is a goal with a reward or recognition in sight, it can create excitement within the agency. Make sure the goals are attainable and will motivate the employees to get out of their comfort zone and help the agency grow. Make sure that each employee knows what the priorities are. Each person needs to know what role they play within the agency and what their personal responsibility is.
Growing your business won’t happen overnight. It is going to be a process. One that will take effort from each and every employee. Make sure that everyone is on the same page and understands the goal of the agency. Make sure to set reasonable goals that can be accomplished in a reasonable amount of time. If the goals are met and your agency is prospering, don’t forget to reward those who helped that progress happen.