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What Do The Solar Eclipse And Insurance Have In Common?

The world recently experienced the Solar eclipse. We know what the specific time it would happen and where the best place was to view the eclipse was. Did you stop to think, who figured that out? It was a complex process, someone very smart, (NASA) figured out the exact time of the eclipse and where the best places are to view it. The mathematically calculations involved in developing the information is well behind the skills of most people. But aren’t you glad there is someone who understands this so we can enjoy their detailed work?

If the eclipse were insurance, the independent agent would be NASA, the sun and moon would be the insurance companies and the public are the policy holders. Insurance is complex and the professional agent manages the complex for the benefit of the insurance buyer.

Insurance is about a relationship involving three parties; the buyer, the independent agent and the insurance company. Here is how we see the needs of each party.

The Insurance Buyer.  Buyers of insurance want peace of mind and confidence that in the event of a loss everything will be ok.

The Insurance Company.  Insurance companies simply want to insure good risks and are transaction focused. Their decisions are financially focused not relationship focused.

The Independent Agent.  Agents transform the complex so their clients can make educated decisions. Helping the client to understand their risks and providing a number of reasonable solutions are the goals of the agent.

The person best suited to bring these parties together is the independent agent.  The agent knows what risks the insurer desires and can educate the buyer in complex coverage design, safety, and claims management, in order to attract the best insurer option.  It is about building a trusted relationship that allows transparency between all parties.

Reichley insurance believes insurance is more than a transaction. Insurance involves a trusted relationship built on a promise to put people before policies. Our promise is to listen to you, identify your risks and provide solutions. Every employee has the heart of a teacher. Connect with us to experience The Reichley difference.

 

How You, The Customer, Benefits From Hiring A Trusted Advisor

Max Integrity Meaning Upper Limit And Virtue

Over the past year or so, we have been discussing the importance of looking at insurance as a service rather than a product.  One area we have not spent much time on is how this adds value and benefit to the customer.

It would seem to me that every family, business owner, or business manager would want to have the following benefits:

  • The complex becomes clear. When you have a relationship with the agent who is serving you, they will make the complex world of insurance understandable.  Only an agent who educates first will be able to help you understand your risk and how best to manage it.  The trusted advisor cuts through the clutter to find the right solution that will solve your problem.
  • Is Insurance the only option? Clients may not always understand that there may be other ways to handle a risk.  A trusted advisor is in the education business—not the selling insurance business.
  • Value-added benefits. With a trusted advisor, you the buyer will have all the resources and knowledge of the agent and his/her team.  You will have help in understanding the buying process, creating of solutions that are designed for you, and support in bringing recommendations to others in your organization.
  • You have access to other experts. Wouldn’t it be great if your agent brought to your team attorneys, accountants, claims experts, loss control professionals and more?  Well, a trusted advisor will do just that.

This is a different mindset for the buyer and agent, but when done correctly it can provide real benefits to your family, business, and life.

Is Insurance A Noble Profession?

We believe without question that insurance is a noble profession. Our reason for this is that the purpose of insurance is to protect society, businesses, and individuals from financial loss and to help them recover when loss or damage occurs.

Google defines “noble” as having, or showing, fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals.

“The promotion of human rights was a noble aspiration.”  Synonyms for noble are righteous, virtuous, good, honorable, upright, decent, worthy, moral, ethical, and reputable.

How does this definition of Nobility translate into action? It can be seen in many ways by an agent with Noble attributes. They show up on time and in person to discuss your individual needs. A Noble agent will tell you not to purchase insurance if he believes you do not need it. Insurance Nobility involves education rather than selling.

Here Is How We Define Nobility

Nobility is taking the right course of action when there is an opportunity to take an easier course. In other words, our industry serves a Noble purpose that is to restore those affected back to the same state prior to the loss. Like all industries there are those who look to personally benefit rather than to serve. Since insurance is a transaction of trust and not price, then hiring a Noble agent who serves a Noble cause to serve their customers before themselves, creates a better value and outcome.    We should all strive to earn the respect and trust of our customers and insurance buyers should strive to hire agents that can live up to that trust and respect.

Nobility is something that can only be seen over time, through personal interaction between the agent and customer. The customer with a Noble agent will have an added confidence that their agent is looking out after their needs rather than just collecting a commission.

 

Let’s keep talking!

 

 

 

 

 

Client Education Trends

We have been on a journey for over a year to educate both agents and buyers of insurance about the most effective way to secure insurance and risk management services. It appears our work may be paying off. We are seeing more and more articles related to the buying and selling insurance that include titles like:

  • “Educate Your Clients”
  • “Discover Solutions”
  • “Quality Relationships Matter”
  • “Buyers Value Partnerships”
  • “Sales People Can’t Wing It”

These are all good articles that directly relate to what we have been saying over the past twelve months. We have reviewed a number of these articles and picked out some of the best points for agents and insurance buyers to consider. These include:

  • See your buyer’s needs through their perspective. This involves active listening on the agent’s part. Agents should talk less, and listen 80% of the time.
  • Deliver your buyer a solution — not a product. Solutions are meant to address the client’s real needs, not sell an insurance product.
  • Focus on what’s important to the client. Determine what their true needs are.
  • Focusing only on your insurance product will cause you to miss what buyer’s value from you.

If insurance buyers demand these procedures of their agents, and agents practiced these guidelines, insurance coverage would be better designed, and overall cost of risk would be lower for businesses. Insurers would be happy because losses would be reduced, and businesses would be matched with the right insurer.

Sources: Jay Mitchell, Dive Inside the Mind of Your Buyer — and Discover a Solution to Serve Them. 2.28.17, Clayton Christensen, The 4 Disciplines of Execution, Deb Calvert, Research Reveals What Buyers Value…It’s Not What You Think, 3.2.17.

Customer Service Skills Your Agent Needs

Insurance agents should always be considered a trusted advisor. As such, there are many unique skill sets an agent should possess. Without these skills you run the risk of having the wrong insurance program, being uninformed regarding your risks, and be frustrated whenever you call or meet with your agent.

Here are some of the skills of a trusted advisor:

  • Has under taken additional training in the field of risk management and insurance.
  • The trusted advisor puts clients’ interests in front of their own. Selling is dead, education is thriving. A trusted advisor will always put education over sales. If we stop trying to just make a sale and truly understand the customer needs, trust is formed.
  • A trusted advisor is genuinely interested in their client’s business success. By showing this level of interest their clients were more open with them and invariably opportunities were identified through discussion.
  • A trusted advisor has a team of experts working together to meet the client’s needs. You will receive personal attention and our team will even come to you. After you describe your personal situation, you will be presented with a custom-tailored insurance solution.
  • Seek to understand. As Steven Covey so succinctly puts it in the The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People – “Seek first to understand and then to be understood”.
  • Trusted advisors are genuine, real, individual people. People can sense when others are being insincere and the relationship never develops beyond the civil stage as the client mistrusts the sales person’s motives.

Why Relationships Matter

Business group meeting

This article is the continuation of our series on how to think differently about insurance. The relationship between you and your agent is the most important part of insurance and risk management process. Your agent’s ability to serve and understand you will impact everything else.

People Before Policies

Reichley Insurance is in the business to meet people’s and business’s needs. We don’t ever just sell you a product. We create and deliver personal and business solutions that address your individual needs, and sometimes that may not include any insurance if it is not in your best interest. Our belief is that by doing what is best for you… we will also benefit.

Education

Smart and informed buyers are the best buyers. We want you to be informed insurance buyers. Our goal will be to educate you on “trending” issues that are important to your family and business.

Relationships Matter

Partnerships are built on trust over time. Our goal is to be viewed by our clients as a trusted partner. If an accident or disaster strikes, Reichley customers can contact our agency staff 24/7 and work with our trusted team. We partner with only the most respected and trusted insurance companies.

We Listen To Your Needs

Unlike some big national firms, we don’t have a set of scripted statements to give to you. We listen to what you are saying and then respond accordingly. We ask the right questions to find the individual insurance solution for you.

We Have a Team of Experienced Professionals

We know and understand your industry.  Before we do anything, we take time to get to know you.  Our staff has a deep understanding of how insurance works and we continually seek training and education. Our team has over 150 combined years of experience.

These commitments result in the highest of customer satisfaction and confidence. They are Reichley Insurance Agency’s highest priorities.

A New Way to Think About Insurance

 

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Congratulations! You got past the title and are now embarking on a new way to look at the insurance buying process. Over the next few months we would like to offer you an alternative way to think about insurance that will change your purchasing experience.

We will start with a few basic truths that we believe in. We will share these truths in greater detail over the next few articles.

  • Insurance is a service not a commodity.
  • You can never get the right insurance for you needs online in 7 minutes.
  • There is more to insurance than a policy.
  • Insurance was designed to be a relationship between the customer, agents and insurer.
  • Your insurance agent should be as valuable as your CPA, attorney and financial advisor.
  • If all you get from your agent/company is a policy, then they are overpaid.
  • Insurance ads are confusing because they make you believe that all insurance is the same, and we all know that not to the case.
  • To get proper coverage, a knowledgeable agent and great service, buyers need not pay any more.

The very core of what we value is that providing reasonable solutions to people and businesses should come before everything else, even if what we recommend means not selling you insurance. That is what we will do.

We want to inform you about the value and importance of developing a relationship with your agent. The qualification of the agent can make a difference in your insurance coverage.   The national companies spend millions of dollars in advertising while offering only a minimal amount of coverage. The main purpose of insurance is to have your claims covered. In order for your claims to be covered you need an individualized policy that addresses your risk and needs. Only then, will you have the right coverage.

We hope you will join us on this journey, and in the end decide that there is a better way to buy insurance and have true peace of mind.