Many commercial insurance agent/brokers prepare for a new producer to fail.
Typical scenario: a new producer hire gets minimal on-boarding.
Training = sending them to an insurance carrier’s new producer school.
This is a hope strategy.
You hope for the best to happen.
As if your new producer will, through osmosis or natural sales animal instincts, succeed.
Grasp the technical breadth of the commercial insurance profession.
Learn how your brokerage works and their role and task responsibilities.
Self-generate leads, prospect, and create an adequate amount of qualified new business appointments.
Convince a prospect to fire their current broker to hire them and your firm.
No wonder new producers struggle.
Year one can be joyless and unrewarding.
New producers will have second and third thoughts about choosing this career.
The best new producer hires figure stuff out.
Driven to achieve, they MacGyver the learning curve and around first-year trip wires.
But why make this a bigger struggle than it already is?
Why not lend your new producer a helping hand along the journey?
Support a new producer with a complete development program.
Not a training program or a school — a development program.
Emphasize learning by doing.
Expect them to generate new business opportunities.
Then work these early new business deals through the entire sales process.
Your experienced people must help them.
How Can You Prepare New Producers to Succeed?
Your firm’s New Producer Development Program needs 4 parts:
- Learning curriculum. Complete an on-the-job orientation to your agency’s sales process. They need to know key people, systems and processes. Once licensed, complete a series of self-study online courses in commercial insurance. WebCE offers a solid curriculum of cost-effective courses. These online technical commercial insurance courses serve two essential purposes. One, increase confidence to make prospecting calls. Two, bridge the gap between licensing school and an insurance carrier new producer school. (Important: Send them to an insurance carrier school AFTER they have been a producer for at least 6 months.)
- 90-day producer business plan. Guide your new producer to create and execute a starter 90-day business plan. This one-page plan creates a good quarterly habit. Laser focus on niches, centers of influence, prospecting, and appointment setting.
- Sales coaching and monitoring. Conduct weekly sales coaching calls or face-to-face meetings for at least 6 months. The new producer is responsible and accountable for their own activity and results. The sales coach handles monitoring. Your producer gives a prospecting activity report to the coach BEFORE each session. Weekly accountability reporting is a powerful positive constraint for a new producer.
- Experienced producer mentoring. Provide your new producer with an experienced producer as a mentor. The mentor collaborates with the sales coach on the new producer’s development. They provide advice and encouragement to the new producer. They team with the new producer as a sales partner/closer. The new producer will set initial appointments with prospects. The mentor joins them on first appointments as the sales partner/closer. The sales partner/closer steers the new producer through the sales process and helps them win.
A development plan for new producer success contains all 4 parts.
A development plan for new producer failure misses some parts.
Typical problem: sustaining #3 (sales coaching and monitoring) and #4 (mentoring).
New producer development demands serious time and resource commitments.
To protect your investment in the firm’s future and stack the odds for success, make the commitment to provide a structured new producer development program. If you can’t or won’t commit to this, then don’t hire a new producer.