How is growth measured as an independent agent? By writing more business? Sorry, but no. Growth is measured by your knowledge as an insurance professional. You should be constantly learning about the industry. Yes, you are required to attend classes and get credit for continuing education, but CE credits are not the end-all be-all to learning about insurance. As a top independent agent, you need to learn how the world of independent insurance works in order to offer the best products and service to your clients. That means that you should be actively seeking out new ways to improve your learning!
Here are three ways you can get more out of learning
Start with the basics, but don’t stop there!
The basics, things like Personal Lines and Commercial Lines, are important. They get you started but showing you the difference between policies like personal auto and commercial auto, so you can grow your appetite and experience early on. These are the starting points for everything else you learn, and sometimes it’s good to get a refresher. I mean, even Vince Lombardi started every foodball season by telling his players, “This, gentlemen, is a football.” Think of classes like the PLCC and SBCL as your coach telling you, “This, people, is an insurance policy.” Don’t be afraid to take these courses if you need to rejuvenate your understandings, especially if the industry undergoes massive changes like it has during COVID-19.
Find your specialty.
Contrary to what you may think, you can’t know it all. There, we said it. It is your job as an independent agent to know something about everything insurance related. That’s a lot of facts to pack down, and it can be stressful to maintain all of that knowledge. So, pick a specialty! Doctors, lawyers, even business people all have specialties, so why shouldn’t you? Find a line of coverage or a certain type of insured and make it your main focus. It could be personal lines, commercial lines, unique coverages, choose something you are interested in and go!
You don’t have to stick to just one specialty either. If you get bored with one, pick another. Switching specialties will allow you to grow faster in those areas, and you will still retain the information from the previous one (Insurancejournal.com). This is how you build depth as an independent agent, and your credibility with prospective clients will shine as you demonstrate this acquired knowledge.
Take up teaching.
The last piece of advice we can give you is to start teaching. Teaching is one of the best ways to cement the knowledge you currently have, and it will give you a better understanding of how to explain things. That’s the next step for you to take your learning into a whole new space. Teaching gives you the opportunity to master certain topics, and maybe you’ll learn something new in the process. This is a great way to build connections with your teammates and strengthen your agency overall!
The difference between a good insurance agent and a great one is that great insurance agents will never stop learning. These tips will not take you to a place where you never need to learn anything again, but they show you how to get the most out of your professional growth. They make you realize that you need to keep learning and expanding your knowledge. Truly, it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in the industry, there’s always going to be more to learn.