In my last article, I discussed the value of shooting from the hip. I can only imagine what some of you were thinking after reading it. You were probably thinking that it’s easier said than done. But here is something I neglected to explain, partially by design, so you would have the chance to think about it and also because I believe the only way a person changes their thought process is through baby steps. We read so much stuff every day. We get tons of emails and texts and even phone calls from all sorts of brokers, carriers and others selling us all kinds of material. Let’s just slow this down for a moment.
How many of you know your product line well? And I mean well enough that you can almost predict cash value at a certain age because you’ve seen a similar illustration before and studied it. Not many of you, I suppose. This is because we gravitate to the sale, the end game, the close by nature. Here is the $64,000 question (now I am dating myself): How about actually studying what it is we sell?
For instance, if you sell whole life, have you ever run multiple illustrations trying to come up with different scenarios that really benefit the client? Have you run multiple illustrations against each other to determine who had the best cash value? It takes time, but at the end of the day, you don’t have to sell anymore. The carrier sells itself. The knowledge you and your client gain from the experience is, as they say, “priceless.”
You wouldn’t go to the first doctor you consulted with for a major operation, would you? You would probably get a second opinion. So why shouldn’t we do the same as agents? You wouldn’t trust your case with an uneducated lawyer, would you? So why shouldn’t we try to learn as much about everyone’s insurance products as possible. In my opinion, there is no such thing as a one-call-close in our business. If you think you can do it, then good for you, but I don’t believe in it, and I guarantee my persistence will beat yours every time. When we meet with our clients, it’s not a one-time event. It’s all a process. Again, if you do the one-call-closes, you will eventually start to collect the one-call-cancels.
In conclusion, it’s important to remember that we are all perpetual students of our industry. It’s okay to have confidence, and it’s okay to call yourself an expert. It’s even okay in my book to say you are the best at what you do to the client or prospect. But, you better be able to back it up with knowledge. Just know when it’s time to turn on the student switch and learn. Study your craft folks, and never allow yourself to be in a situation where another agent takes a case from you because you just didn’t spend the time getting to know their situation and formulate a reasonable plan of action. I spent three years of my career just selling life insurance. To this day, more than 70 percent of my business comes from educating people about life insurance and delivering policies. Notice that I didn’t say, “selling.”