Circle of Choice: Part Two
Outside the circle
Let’s take a look at some of the OTC things we can’t change, no matter what we do.
- The national/global economy. None of us can make a significant impact here.
- Insurance carriers’ appetites. You can’t stop them from changing, but it’s important that you understand them.
- Agency automation system/technology. It’s not going away, so you need to adapt to it and maximize it.
- The service trap. Allowing yourself to stay “too busy” doing service work OTC means you can’t get ITC.
Inside the circle
Now let’s put a laser focus on the things that are ITC:
- Personal business model. What are you working toward?
- Ideal Client Profile. What does your ideal client look like? Not everyone is an ideal client, and in fact some can be quite un-ideal.
- High-Performance team. What are the roles, responsibilities, and makeup of your high-performance team? Calling them high-performance doesn’t necessarily mean they are. I’ve seen plenty of under-performers masquerade as high-performance team members.
- Unique selling proposition. Inside the circle, you must create your own unique selling proposition or value proposition. Whatever you choose to call it, it’s critically important that you have one.
- Relationship management. If you believe, as I do, that our industry still revolves around relationships, and if you want to have a relationship-based book of business vs. a transaction-based book, what’s your relationship management program?
- Networking activities. You can control what events you attend, how you prepare for them, whom you want to meet, and how you will follow up with them afterward.
- Daily preparation, practice, rehearsals. You can control that and use it as an unfair advantage.
- Calendar. Ours is The Producer’s Perfect Schedule. Its purpose is to get producers to spend at least 20 hours per week face to face with clients, prospects, and centers of influence. You may recall my pointing out in past articles that 20 hours per week is only 12% of your total week! In reality, most producers don’t come anywhere close to that.
- Health. You may not be able to prevent all illness, but you can certainly strive to be as healthy as possible by controlling your diet and exercising.
- Personal/leisure time. This includes how much time you spend with your family and how much time you devote to recreational activities, both of which are within your control.
- Money-making activities. When it comes to ITC business activities, we know that the best producers need to spend 80% of their time on four key money-making activities: sales, relationship management, continuations, and pipeline building.
Based on my experience and observations, I know that the more time you spend ITC, the more money you make, the happier you are, and the more balanced your life is.
As a producer, you have countless choices to make each day. But that’s the beauty of what you do—you have the freedom of choice! Keep it simple as you figure out the things that you can (and want to) control. Create a daily morning ritual of focusing on your ITC items.
Also, have a Sunday evening ritual of preparing for the week ahead. Spend some time thinking through where you are going and what you need to accomplish in the coming week. Better yet, make that a daily ritual! Try using a pen and paper to write out a schedule for the day (vs. a computer or electronic device). This will help you identify the items you can control—the ones that belong ITC that will get you great results!
Overall, The Circle of Choice eliminates what I call “HAWG” (Hysterical Activity on the Way to the Grave) and provides clarity. The key is to keep it simple because there is clarity in simplicity.
Keep in mind that none of us are going to get out of this alive! I’ve said many times that “hope is not a strategy,” and guess what? Neither is luck or doing nothing!
I firmly believe that you must determine what’s inside your Circle of Choice and focus on those things you can control. That’s The Better Way!
Roger has been a consultant for the insurance industry for over 35 years now. He has taught thousands of independent insurance agents how to succeed while lightening their workload.