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Posts Tagged ‘Insurance Rhode Island’

Conflict = Commerce

If you are negotiating an outcome among different parties, Trust is a paramount factor in the negotiations. Try too choose an independent,fair facilitator,rather than entrenching in a position and fighting it out with attorneys. It is not to their advantage to resolve your issue without considerable conflict. This is a lot of the work I do for people. Find a trustworthy facilitator,air both sides of the issue, and FIX IT! Don’t let a whole tribe of people charge you an arm and a leg to do what is (and was) right in the first place. Remember Conflict = Commerce!

Beware the Skunk!

For over ten years I have been discussing the “narrowing” of coverage due to the increased pressure from reinsurers  and rating agencies for increased profits and decreased loss ratios.   One of my key examples has been a broadening definition of “pollution”.

In the past two months I have either been involved in or heard of several claims being denied for “skunk spray”. This is a perfect example of profiteering.   A skunk is neither a vermin nor is skunk spray pollution.      But, beware…   Some have denied altogether and some have denied coverage for contents, EVEN WITH AN HO 15 ENDORSEMENT!

The practical need to visit a client.

As time goes on, it is clearer and clearer to me that there is a need for an Agent to visit a client at the time of sale and a need for an Adjuster to visit a client at the time of claim (as well as the  Agent). I am fighting my way through a half million dollar liability claim (as an expert witness) attempting to get the Insurer to reverse a denial from three years ago.   The claim was wrongfully denied and the Agent did not step into it until now!   The only reason for a denial was that the Insurance Company Adjuster chose to do no investigation at all.   Even a conversation with the Insured would have uncovered facts rendering some insurance coverage. This is absurd.   It does not even meet the basic obligations of the Insurance Company upon notification!   They simply did not have adequate information to make an informed decision.   We simply cannot handle these complicated transactions totally over the phone or on the internet!    WE NEED TO GET BETTER!

Can you find the “Fear” in your organization?

Fear in organizations ruins strategic initiatives.    Self interest and fear run together.   I am not talking about people literally quaking in their boots, I am talking about people being afraid that YOUR strategic initiatives will undermine their position or their power. Fear is a drastic impediment to teamwork!  Fear is a terrible impediment to  living our lives fully.

Seek out the fear in your organization. Communicate at all levels openly. Make communication the norm and accept it without judgment.   Fear destroys initiative.  FOLLOW the FEAR you’ll FIND the problem. What are the FEARS in your organization? Can YOU really find out?

In our strategic planning sessions, we find fears and make them advantages!

Your people will not tell you their fears unless they feel safe.   Be an effective leader and learn to listen.

Is Insurance a Commodity? (7) Final

This discussion of Commodities centers on recent attempts by insurers to circumvent agents and sell insurance products over the internet.    I am convinced that insurance is not a commodity as it is not a product that can be sold in an unmodified state and be used properly.   It would be like purchasing an unassembled, complicated piece of equipment and having no directions for assembly.  It appears to me that is the case with “unbundled” “risk bearing” or to put it another way, the thing Insurance companies sell is a “risk finance” mechanism.    Agents add value to this product by showing purchasers how to use it and by adding their own body of knowledge to the process!

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In my quest to determine if I think Insurance is a commodity, I am surprised at my opinion.    I think perhaps “Insurance” is a commodity in that it is a raw product used in the chain of “production” for “protection” of your insured (speaking from an agents standpoint.)

“Risk bearing” (an insurer) is risk finance, but as I pointed out earlier, risk bearing without risk management advice is not really an end user product, as much as some insurers would like to think so.   BOTH the Insurer and the Insured need to advice of the agent to write or use the product effectively.

My opinion turns out to be that risk bearing is a commodity but insurance is not.  No bias intended here… the use of insurance without the benefit of risk management advice is rather foolish. Consumers are not trained in how to use risk management tools, how financial decisions in this area do or do not make sense, consumers do not understand relative pricing nor insurer reputation and consumers do not understand the consequences of making inappropriate decisions that cannot be changed AFTER the loss.

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What the consumers  know will not hurt them.

What they do not know will not hurt them, as long as they know they do not know it.

What the consumers do not know, and do not know they don’t know, will create real post loss problems.

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The independent advice of your agent is invaluable, both before and after the loss!