You don’t have to be a business expert to know the importance of setting goals. Goal setting is common practice in our world – from setting weight-loss goals to setting revenue goals, businesses and individuals alike set goals all the time. Yet, study has shown that less than 10% of people achieve the goals they set. So why bother setting goals in the first place? While this statistic may be discouraging, if you’re trying to grow your insurance business, you shouldn’t give up on goals altogether. Instead, you need to reevaluate how you’re setting your business goals to increase your likelihood of success.
Most people are familiar with the concept of setting “SMART” goals: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely goals. This framework for setting strategic goals is not new, but oftentimes agents or agencies miss the mark when setting their goals. It all starts with the first aspect of a SMART goal – specific. If you aren’t setting these 4 specific goals for your insurance business, then you’re missing an opportunity to achieve more in your business.
1. Setting Overall Business Goals
The most common goal insurance agents and agencies set is an overall business goal. Setting an overarching goal for your business helps set the trajectory for where you want to go.
For both agents and agencies, this goal often looks like number of clients served, number of policies written, or percentage of revenue growth from the previous year. Of course, business goals can also encompass values not directly related to revenue or output, such as team member growth or certain certifications received.
For your agency, you probably want to review your historical data to set your current goal. Or you might look at statistics for your industry as well as peers and competitors who have been in the business longer than you.
Setting overall business goals like these will guide the way for the other types of goals your agency should establish. Think of this goal as the finish line at the end of the marathon. Then, like training for a marathon, you must set smaller, more specific goals that help you reach the finish line.
2. Sales Goals
Sales goals are the second most common goals businesses set. Naturally, if your overall business goal is related to sales closed or revenue numbers, then setting sales goals will give you incremental steps to achieve that goal. Sales goals can take a variety of forms, including:
- Quarterly revenue numbers
- Weekly sales opportunities closed
- Seasonal goals (like during OEP)
The more specific you can make these goals, the better. Breaking it down by product or service, agent selling, and even returning vs new customers are great ways to make your sales goal more specific.
Not only do businesses use sales goals to measure their success, but carriers also reward agents and agencies for achieving industry-leading sales.
While everyone wants to be the industry’s best, it’s important to remember the “A” in SMART: attainable. Set your sales goals based on your historical performance and evaluation of the market. Setting attainable sales goals is a major step to hitting those goals.
3. Marketing Goals
Now we’re venturing into the area of business where fewer agents or agency leaders have clearly defined goals. In today’s world, marketing is becoming increasingly important for insurance agents and agencies who may have previously relied on word-of-mouth or referrals to drum-up business. The rise of the internet and social media means you have a lot more “noise” and competition to cut through to reach your leads.
Marketing drives sales, and therefore, you should have strategic marketing goals based on your sales goals. Since this is a newer concept for some agents and agencies, we created a whole series of marketing webinars to tell you everything you need to know. The gist is this: marketing expands your audience and develops your audience into leads, sales converts those leads into closed business. Therefore, you should set marketing goals that help you achieve your sales goals.
4. Operational Goals
The fourth goal you should get specific about when setting your business goals is operational goals. Your operations is the heart of your business, it’s where things happen and services are rendered. Nevertheless, it’s often forgotten when it comes to setting goals. Agents and agencies focus on execution and forget about how their operations ultimately impact their success.
Operational goals can reflect aspects of your business such as:
- Customer satisfaction
- Process consistency
- Turnaround time
- Team growth
- Administrative efficiency
At the end of the day, every business’s underlying goal should be to provide exceptional customer service, and that comes through how you operate. Setting operational goals gives you a mark to measure your business against and enables you to set your sights on improving service and the function of your business.
Here at AgentLink, we meet agents and agency leaders all the time who are inevitably struggling with some part of their operations. Operational challenges range from lack of HR support to inefficiencies in client enrollment. Though goal setting is a great way to strive for improvements in your operations, setting the goal only gives you a vision for the future. You have to identify and take steps to fix the issues in your operations in order to reach those goals.
Our Concierge Services is one of the ways we help agents and agencies improve their operations to reach their operational goals. AgentLink Concierge Services can manage your sales, renewals, comprehensive account management, HR support, carrier communication, and more. We can step into the areas of your operations where you need help and provide support without detracting from your core business.
If you’re ready to set out on the path to meet your operational goals, talk with one of our Concierge Services team members to get started.