Is Becoming a Michigan Insurance Agent Right for Me?
Are you thinking of becoming a Michigan car insurance agent? Maybe you have some questions about what it is like being an agent. It can be a very rewarding and lucrative job if you can get yourself in the right position. As with most jobs, it can be tough too. Here are a few things to think about before trying to become a Michigan insurance agent.
Are you a people person?
No really, a true people person? Are you prepared to sell sell sell, but also help people in their time of need? Insurance agents must help people through tough and often confusing situations. Imagine high powered straight line wind blows through your town. Lots of your policy holders will be looking to you for help all at the same time. It requires patience and understanding to make it through the big storms.
You will be dealing with many of your clients on a very regular basis. Everything from monthly payments, to complaints about rate increases, to reporting claims will be handled by an insurance agent. Some people are easy to work with and some will not be so easy. Insurance agents need to remain professional and ready for anything.
Are you good at multitasking?
When I first started out as a personal lines insurance agent, I was surprised how many small tasks were handled in short periods of time. None of the tasks are especially hard, but the quantity of tasks is what increases the difficulty. You must be well organized and efficient at all of the small tasks to be a good insurance agent.
For instance, maybe you have a client at your desk working on a quote. Another client walks in to make a payment, another walks in to pick up proof of insurance, and the phone is ringing. Do you make the client with a payment wait along with the one to pick up proof of insurance? Or do you collect the payment quickly and already have the proof of insurance prepared? How you handle these situations makes an impression on your clients and can have a big impact on your bottom line.
Are you prepared to learn lots of rules?
The better you understand Michigan car insurance laws the better you will be as an agent. Not only do you need to know the laws off the top of your head, you need to know your insurance carrier’s rules too. Each insurance carrier has its own set of rules for accepting new business and making changes to existing policies. Nothing can really take the place of experience when it comes to knowing the rules. It is a lot to remember and it is critical to get it right. Telling a client the wrong information can lead to big problems. Be prepared to always verify the information in the beginning to ensure you have the right information.
Are you prepared to be held liable?
The scariest part of being an agent is potentially being held liable for a mistake. For example, a client makes a payment at the office for their car insurance. You were very busy at the time of drop off and never got around to submitting the payment through the system. Later in the week, that same client is in a major accident. Medical bills and physical damage to the vehicle exceed $20,000. When the claim in called into the insurance carrier, the claim gets denied due to the policy cancelling for nonpayment. The client is extremely upset and you could be held liable. Agents do carry what is called error and omission coverage just for these types of mistakes, however these policies usually come with very high deductibles. You might be responsible for the first $10,000 out of your own pocket!
Mistakes can happen to anyone. Hopefully, they will be caught before a major accident strikes. It is important for an insurance agent to always complete tasks and to document everything. Notating every conversation and transaction is a part of an agent’s daily routine to help protect against being held liable.
Do you prefer a flexible work schedule?
Many agents are able to hire help at their office once they are established. Being the boss certainly has some perks including a flexible work schedule. As long as you can trust your hired help, you will be able to enjoy flexible hours. Your business could potentially be growing without even being at the office.
What do you think?
Did you answer yes to all of the above questions? If you did, then becoming a Michigan insurance agent might be the perfect job for you. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, insurance agent jobs are estimated to grow 21.9% across the country between 2010 and 2020. The bureau also states insurance agents earn an average of $63,400 a year nationwide. An insurance agent’s salary can vary greatly and fluctuate from year to year. Which is one more thing to consider before pursuing a job as a Michigan insurance agent.
Now if you are really serious, you absolutely must read this before applying for an agent position.
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