You’ve heard that becoming an insurance agent is high risk, high reward. In this career, the potential is there for a relatively inexperienced, unqualified individual to make lots of money pretty quickly. But it’s not easy, and many agents end up quitting. Here are some common reasons for failure – and how to turn them into your strengths.
A lack of drive
Everyone has some form of motivation on a fundamental level – for starters, we all need money to make a living. If that were all the motivation it takes to succeed, there would be many more successful insurance agents.
The nature of your work is not like the ordinary 9-to-5 desk job. Don’t think you can show up for 8 hours and expect to make money. You have more in common with remote workers, self-employed freelancers, and even businesses. Embrace this mindset – you are a business. Read about how entrepreneurs succeed; they are always looking for ways to get better. Pour your efforts into improving in some small way each day. Learn some customer service skills today, digital marketing tactics tomorrow, and so on.
Many people think that a job in sales is better suited to the extroverted. And people who are naturally good talkers, with a warm and effusive personality, can get a conversation up and running with most potential clients.
However, being an introvert is not necessarily a drawback. Clients appreciate a good listener and listening – communication as a whole – is a skill you can learn and improve upon. In the end, you can win the client’s trust and build a stronger relationship than the extrovert who talks a lot without really hearing their client’s needs.
Fear of failure
Facing rejection in any job is stressful. As an insurance agent, not making the sale feels like losing money and is doubly painful. And then you have to consider the potential competition; maybe a smooth talker will come along and undercut your offer.
Fear comes naturally to everyone, and even the most experienced in any profession can face failure. Elite athletes botch plays in the clutch; it happens. What matters is how you learn and get back up on your feet. Consider the reasons you might have lost a client, and work to address those gaps. Try a different sales tactic that emphasizes value instead of price, for example.
Not enough training
Unfortunately, in this industry, your mileage may truly vary when it comes to the amount of support, education, and training you receive. And for a lot of people, it’s hard to make a pitch with confidence when you don’t feel like an expert regarding your product.
Look for opportunities to improve as part of the job. For instance, a Medicare FMO that provides you with up-to-date learning resources and mentorship opportunities is a great way to address any knowledge gaps. Other than that, take it on yourself to study the industry and practice explaining products and packages to a friend or family member. Teaching is often the best way to learn.
Focusing on the money
Of course, you’re in this line of work to make money. But people can tell when you’re just looking at them as numbers. And in the end, being too focused on money isn’t going to save you when hard times come (they will).
Being a successful insurance agent is about quality customer service, and that all starts with caring about the customer’s needs. That’s how you sell them on the right solution and gain satisfaction from your work.