SCORE
I read once that all things being equal, people will do business with and refer business to those people they know, like, trust and respect. Finding that kind of insurance agent, someone you trust to work on your behalf, advocate for you in a claim situation, and make sure you’re covered correctly may be one of the most important decisions you make as a business owner. 
 
To achieve this, I asked my co-workers: “if you could give a business owner advice about how to make their agent a part of their team, what would you suggest?” These are the responses.
  1. Be honest with me – tell me the good and bad stuff both so that I can get you covered correctly. Most problems can be solved if I know about them up front.
  2. Trust me - even though I represent the company and our agency, I have equal allegiance to my clients and will always balance what is best for them while maintaining my integrity to my employer and my company partners. This creates the win/win/win. 
  3. Stay in touch – it’s never wrong to call me – to run something past me – to keep me in the loop as things change. I need to be part of your operations – and can do my best job for you when you include me as part of your team.
  4. Make sure you share your preferred method of communication with me. Each person interacts differently - email, phone, text etc.
  5. Don’t be afraid to ask (or answer) the tough questions. I have found over the course of my career that business owners appreciate this. It may seem uncomfortable at times, but when done in a professional manner it really helps to establish mutual respect.
  6. Let us review the insurance part of contracts you’re signing before you sign. Sometimes contracts require coverage you don’t have or may be costly to purchase. Knowing up front is way better than after the fact.
  7.  Don’t assume that a dealership is going to get us information on purchases and trade-ins or that if you’re leasing equipment that we are going to be notified to add coverage on it. Always call, email or text to let us know what you’re purchasing.
  8.  I will give my year-round commitment for service and ask for your commitment to meet with me at least a couple of times per year so we can talk about any insurance exposure changes and complete a review of the coverage/policies that we have for your business.
  9. Be on board with safety and improving safety should an inspection point out areas of need or improvement. I let the prospect/client know that insurance inspections are a good thing. Loss control engineers sometimes see a loss before it happens.
  10. It’s never too early to give us a heads up. When you start looking at new locations or equipment or vehicles – contact us so we get it into our workflow. Every business is struggling right now to keep up and provide great service. It helps us immensely to work ahead for your needs.
All of these are good advice, but at its core – treat us as partners. We’re all working together to make sure you’re covered correctly at the most affordable pricing. We like nothing better than to say “we can help take care of that for you”! 

About the Author(s)

Ashley Whitney

Ashley Whitney is an experienced president with a demonstrated history of working in the insurance industry. She is skilled in employment practices liability, risk management, life insurance, business, and property & casualty insurance. She earned her MBA focused in general business from Capella University. Ashley is passionate about Northern Michigan, Thriving Petoskey and all things Up North.

President and Owner, Harbor/Brenn Insurance Agencies
Your Insurance Agent Should be on Your Team