Agents and agencies often feel like they have to do it all in order to compete. But we are here to tell you it’s okay if you don’t do it all. You read that right; it’s okay if you do not do it all. In fact, it’s better for your business if you don’t.
While there’s no harm in growing your expertise and branching out, there’s also value in focusing on doing what you do best – whether that’s selling property and casualty insurance or serving seniors with Medicare. So as you set your goals for growth, it’s important that you take a strategic approach.
Remember, 1) people turn to the experts for a reason. And 2) it will be an organized, efficient, and positive customer service experience that has customers turning to you for all their future needs.
These two principles should guide the way you grow your business. But the last thing you want to do is overextend your existing team or expanding too quickly. Neither scenario leads to strategic, scalable growth. Instead, you should strive to maximize your team without maxing out your payroll.
Let’s look at the dangers of overextending or expanding too quickly.
Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin
Specialization isn’t a new or radical concept, in fact, you probably already know quite a bit about it. It’s the strategy of focusing on producing only a few products, or providing only a few services, to maximize productivity and expertise. At the same time, when a client has more products they look to you for, they’re likely to be more “sticky” and easier to retain. So every insurance agent or agency wants to strike the balance of offering clients more while not spreading themselves too thin.
The reality is people trust specialists, and trust is key to success in consultative sales. Without learning and staying up to date with your niche of the insurance world, the goals you’ve set and the processes you’ve developed can’t come together to benefit you, your agency, or your client.
Wearing multiple hats is often necessary when you’re an independent agent or a part of a small team, but wearing too many hats at once can have negative consequences for the parts of your business that need to thrive, like productivity and efficiency. Having too many things on a to-do list can be demotivating and overworked team members may start putting less energy into their work. Eventually, this will result in poor customer service, burnout, and inevitably turnover. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you should start hiring to staff a large team that can handle more.
The Danger of Expanding Too Quickly
You don’t want to assign too many tasks to a single employee, but you also don’t want to fall into the trap of expanding beyond your projected growth. Your employees are an investment in your business and you need to invest strategically. Do you really need an entire administrative team? Or a person entirely dedicated to selling one product? Although it’s great to have more hands on deck, it can be costly if the market’s demand doesn’t match your workforce.
Even if you are wanting to grow into a new type of insurance, hiring an expert can be dangerous for your finances. Experts are highly trained and likely bring a new skill set to a small business, but they do so at a higher cost. Alternatively, paying low wages can lead to high turnover and ultimately more of your time spent rehiring a position you can’t keep filled.
At some point, with careful strategic planning and good leadership, your business will be ready to scale up. But in the meantime, there’s still a way to offer more products and better service to your client, without overwhelming your team or expanding your business in a way that you can’t sustain.
Helping You Strike the Balance
AgentLink can help you fill in the gaps and find that balance.
AgentLink’s Concierge Services can help you service your clients even when they need a type of insurance outside of your specialty. We work alongside you, as your business partner, not a competitor. You simply refer your client or prospect to us and we provide them with the best comprehensive service, so you have more time to handle the business you prefer.
As your business partner, we make sure you always get the commissions and we will always hand leads back to you when they are ready to be serviced in your area of expertise. It’s like we are on your team because we want to help you maximize your book of business.
If HR or accounting is where you’re feeling the strain, we even provide administrative and marketing support for your agency so that you don’t have to manage all of that in-house. From hosting in-person enrollment events to providing educational materials that can easily be branded with your name and logo, we’re here to provide you with the support you need to enhance your reputation and take your business to greater heights.