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Posts Tagged ‘Insurance Strategy’

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.

Insurance is not a “Commodity”!

This discussion of Commodities centers around 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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We will explore what is a “Commodity”, why I think insurance is NOT a commodity, and what agents can do to more effectively distriblute the risk bearing product more effectively and more to the advantage of their customers!

Borders goes “OUT OF BUSINESS”…Like the Local Insurance Agent???

Another “Big Box” store bites the dust. They drive most of the local bookstores out of business and then they cannot survive themselves.

When are we going to realize the value of putting money back into the local economy?

When are we going to wake up to that fact in the Insurance industry?

As we continue to go to the internet for the “low price” we will be contributing to the demise of local business.

Your local insurance agent is there for you! If they do their job correctly (and I will admit, some do not) you will have a local source for trusted advice to help you when things don’t “go so well”, and sometimes they do not “go so well”.

I pointed out earlier, there is a great deal of conflict between the goals of an insurance company and an insured at the time of claim.

YOU, consumer, NEED someone to look after you when the claim happens! Appreciate this fact and realize the value your local insurance agent adds.

If we don’t realize the value of the local business/insurance agent, we will become victims of the same “Big Box” thinking that led to the demise of Borders.   We will have no local support and insurers will be able to do anything they wish to their customers!

 

Are Insurance Agents executing a Long-Term Strategy?

Insurance Agents are defined by the Insurance Company side of our Industry as the “sales and distribution” mechanism of their risk bearing operation. In my opinion this industry created, “point of sale” paradigm has created a mentality that the Insurance Customer relationship is a single “point of sale” event.

In truth, this is an extremely short term focus/strategy for both the Insurer and the agent. The Insurance Agent Customer relationship has to be viewed as a long term series of events rather than a point of sale relationship. This makes the strategic focus of the agent a long term strategy rather than a sort term strategy. This also forces the agent to focus on ALL the events in the life of the insurance customer relationship rather than just the “point of sale”. If view this way, the agent will be involved in all facets in the life of the relationship including at the time of claim. This is the way to add value and retain customers! Take a long term view, agents!

Business Use of MY “Auto”?

Many of our Insureds use their auto in business and are insured under a personal auto policy.  We have told them “no problem” because of the way the “personal auto”  “business use” exclusion is written.

It has recently been a problem for agents as “business use” does not include “livery”.  Carrying persons or property for a “fee” IS excluded!

Be cautious about your advice to your clients as this could hand them an uninsured loss!   It could also hand you a handsome E & O claim, agents!