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The AIMS Society blog is designed to provide practical, timely ideas to help insurance agencies improve results from their marketing and sales efforts. Wishing you much success!!! For even more, consider joining the AIMS Society and you'll have access to a powerful network of agents and carrier personnel focused on excellence in sales!

 

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Top 10 Ways to Retain Your Talent

Posted By AIMS Society, Thursday, March 30, 2017

Top 10 Ways to Retain Your Talent

A 2016 Gallup report revealed that 21% of millennials have changed jobs within the past year — more than three times the number of non-millennials who report the same. Why are they so likely to move around? Low engagement in the workplace.

If you're looking to retain your top talent, you have to actively promote your business as a desirable place to work. But there isn't a one-size-fits-all approach. Here are a few ways you can retain talent and keep your workforce strong, loyal and dedicated to your organization:

  1. Share expectations. Avoid stress, confusion and incompetent feelings by sharing expectations and changes in job responsibilities or processes. Keep the line of communication open.
  2. Be fair and equal. This is self-explanatory, but keep it in mind when it comes to raises, perks and new project opportunities. Create a comfortable and inclusive environment.
  3. Offer additional training opportunities. Sponsoring professional development and continuing education courses shows employees that you're invested in their professional growth and want to see them succeed.
  4. Implement a mentorship program. Foster relationships within the workplace across departments and within the ladder. It will make employees more emotionally connected within the organization.
  5. Provide philanthropy opportunities. Demonstrate your commitment to giving back. It's an attractive quality to employees and will benefit your organization's image at the same time.
  6. Invest in technology. Employees often complain of outdated tech and hardware that create inefficiency and redundancy in day-to-day work. Implement modern tech tools to keep employees interested, yourself current and procedures productive.
  7. Encourage flexibility. Get rid of the 9-to-5 schedule and give employees the mobility they deserve. It will make them happier and more productive, and they'll look at your organization more favorably.
  8. Ask for feedback. Show employees you care about their thoughts, ideas and opinions. Take the time to listen, and empower them to take initiative.
  9. Show appreciation and support. Recognize accomplishments, say 'thank you' and, if possible, reward hard work with bonuses or gifts.
  10. Have fun. Coordinate social activities like an office-wide potluck or after-hours bowling game. Work and play can —  and should — coexist.

Some of the above ideas may seem obvious, but creating an employee retention strategy doesn't have to be difficult. What are some ways you're retaining your top talent and reducing employee turnover?

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Tags:  business value  efficiency  Leadership  Networking  producer compensation  productivity  Professional Development  self-improvement  sellability  teamwork  Technology  time management 

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Newsflash

Posted By AIMS Society, Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Here’s Something You Already Knew — but What Are We Going to Do About It?

The insurance industry, and independent insurance agents in particular, are struggling to keep and retain talent.

That’s hardly new news. Yet it’s the same news the industry has been sharing for literally more than a decade. I know it. You know it. Everyone knows it.

So are we simply going to accept our fate and continue to nod our heads in surrender? Not if those who attended the recent PRO-to-PRO executive retreat in Celebration, Florida, have anything to say about it. In fact, as part of our discussion and review of AIMS activities, we came to resounding agreement that we want to actively work in the coming year toward making our publicly stated vision a reality: “The AIMS Society strives to elevate the insurance profession.” (After all, an elevated profession is an attractive profession).

And just how do we intend to accomplish that? By “inspiring passion for insurance marketing and sales by supporting professional and personal development with education and collaboration that challenges, demands accountability and delivers actionable information.”

As we said during our time together in Florida, we want to make insurance “cool,” for lack of a better word, and we’re excited to share our passion about an industry we all know makes a true difference in the world. Reiterated during our meeting, there are few other industries that can make such a direct impact on an individual’s security or help people and businesses return to a sense of normalcy following a loss. That’s a pretty noble calling.

So, here’s what we’re hoping: that you want to share the positives of our profession and you want to change the trajectory of our talent shortage. Change will only come if we all actively engage to promote and educate both inside and outside the insurance industry. We’re excited about the possibilities. We’re excited to create change through AIMS.

If you’d like to join us, we sincerely hope you’ll consider a position on the board or offer your involvement in other ways. If you’re ready today or you have questions about how you can help, contact Donna Gray at the AIMS Society at donna@aimssociety.org. If you need a bit more detail before committing, keep an eye out for some updates and invitations over the next few months. We’re ready to engage and can’t wait to hear your ideas and benefit from your unique talents. Let’s work together to make some exciting news!

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Tags:  agency value  AIMS Society  efficiency  Insurance Education  Networking  producer compensation  productivity  Professional Development  PRO-to-PRO  self-improvement  Social Media  teamwork  time management 

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We Interrupt This Holiday...with Your job

Posted By AIMS Society, Thursday, December 8, 2016

How to Maintain the Cheer without Losing Your Mind

"We're going to make that decision after the first of the year." Odds are you've heard that phrase a time or two around the holidays. Unfortunately, the stretch between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day can be one of the toughest times of the year for someone in sales. Seems everyone checks out. But, of course, your sales quota doesn't, so work you must (and in some ways even harder than at any other time of the year).

So how to survive the holidays with a smile? Here's some important rules to keep you going:

  • Perhaps most important, don't assume that everyone will put you off until after January 1. Keep working your contacts, using the opportunity to deliver a small end-of-year token of appreciation (think buttercream cookies from Cheryl's Cookies or a gourmet food or fruit basket from Harry and David) or help them firm up their own plans before the conclusion of a calendar year. Offer to take them to lunch, so you can both summarize what worked and what didn't over the past year.
  • Ask your boss if you can work a day or two from home. If you are the boss, consider rewarding your sales team with this valued perk. Will everyone put in a full eight hours? Maybe not, but know this annual reward is contingent on proven effort, you'll likely be pleased with the results.
  • If you're too inundated with work to fully enjoy the season, consider "rescheduling" the holiday. This doesn't mean you ignore the customary date altogether, but it does mean you might move an extended family get together to after the New year or change the traditional office party to February when everyone is less stressed. Who says we have to cram everything into the last month of the year?
  • Let the team know you understand the increased demands they face because of the holidays. Look for ways to ease their stresses and you'll plant the seeds of real loyalty.

—  Consider setting up a shopping day at work, with multiple vendors in attendance. Most of us know someone who sells jewelry or other small gifts through home sales.

—  Set up a group online shopping lunch with pizza. Gather the group, allow them to share gift ideas and perhaps give everyone an Amazon gift card or something similar to get them started.

We spend too much time at work to be miserable, particularly during the holidays. So instead of dreading the push-pull of the season, look for creative ways to make it work for both you and your clients. You might be surprised how productive the month turns out to be!

Happy Holidays!

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Tags:  AIMS Society  Friends  insurance marketing and sales  Leadership  Networking  producer compensation  Relax  self-improvement  teamwork  time management 

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What the Million Dollar Pros Know

Posted By AIMS Society, Tuesday, November 15, 2016

We know a guy who built an agency from scratch.  He started with an office in the back seat of a borrowed car.  He eventually built it to a $3.5 million revenue shop without borrowing a dime or completing an acquisition. In 2007, his agency was sold to HUB International.

Today, he manages 38 agents across the country, who last year produced $26 million in commission.  Six of his producers post over $1 million in commission income.  In addition, since becoming chief sales officer, he has taken between 15-30 percent of his sales force to the Sharp Awards, which is HUB International's annual sales achievement recognition.  In order to qualify for this award, agents must write a minimum of $200,000 in new commission income that year.

Impressive.

Think he might have some interesting stories?  Think you could benefit from his insight?

We're excited to have Dennis Templeton at the 2017 PRO-to-PRO in Orlando February 9-10.  He's an AIMS Society past president, past board member and CPIA life member, and on Thursday afternoon, he'll be sharing his high-energy presentation, "The Winner's Playbook."

What can you expect?  Not theory, but real world ideas you can actually use.  In fact, Dennis is going to share his own complete, proven blueprint for building a sales program.  You'll learn:

  • the routine that can help you win consistently
  • how to "sell without quoting"
  • "The 10 best" that lead to a high-performing sales organization

As Dennis explains, "Understanding this is a mental game - and if you are willing to open your mind and change the way you think - there is not limit to what you can do in our business.  And it starts with your own belief system in yourself!"  He also gives some of his own credit to AIMS saying, "Early on, I got involved with the CPIA / AIMS Society to maximize my sales knowledge and use it in the growth of the agency."  Looks like it worked. Ready to put AIMS to work for you?

Register today!

Tags:  Agency Management  agency sale  agency value  AIMS Society  business value  CPIA designation  efficiency  Insurance Education  insurance marketing and sales  Leadership  Networking  producer compensation  productivity  Professional Development  PRO-to-PRO  self-improvement  Social Media  teamwork  Technology  time management 

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Get Ready for Lots of New Things from AIMS!

Posted By AIMS Society, Friday, October 21, 2016

New Look, New Website, New Services

You've surely noticed...we updated our logo and our website.  Although we're thrilled with the results, please know that it's stilland always will bea work in process.

Our new website is shaping up to be something pretty incredible and we hope to keep adding new features.  While we think you'll love the new look, what's even more exciting is what you'll be able to do with all of the AIMS tools and services. We'd like to share the thought behind all the new bells, whistles and visual touches.

We didn't want to make any changes without careful planning, so we started with a very deliberate review of our brand and our services to better understand what worksand what doesn't.  We did research with stakeholders and the board, spent time at a two-day workshop where we had an honest assessment of our organization, and we clearly described our aspirations moving forward.  The result is a one-page Brand Armature that outlines our:

  • Vision - The AIMS Society strives to elevate the insurance profession.
  • Mission - We inspire passion for insurance marketing and sales by supporting professional and personal development with education and collaboration that challenges, demands accountability and delivers actionable information.
  • Values, brand persona, proof points and client needs.

There's a lot packed into that one document, so we also created one succinct over-arching statement that we hope every AIMS member will embrace.  We call it our Brand Essence. It's like our DNA, the building block for everything else we do. The essence of the AIMS Societydrumroll, pleaseis:

Engage. Educate. Empower.

Three words that pack a lot of punch.  They imply active participation, ongoing dialog, a belief that learning never ends, and a desire to help members uncover their own strengths and fuel their confidence to succeed.

Our hope is that you keep these three words in mind as you see each of the exciting new things AIMS will be unveiling over the next year.  So get ready to join in a new era for AIMS.  Things are about to get really interesting!

 

Tags:  agency value  AIMS Society  business value  CPIA designation  efficiency  Insurance Education  insurance marketing and sales  Networking  producer compensation  Professional Development  Social Media 

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