Recently I introduced The Agency’s Best Version Pyramid (BVP). It was so well received that I’ve expanded on the concept and applied it to the all-important role of producers. Net new revenue may not solve all your problems, but I firmly believe that it solves most of them!
I continue to be very concerned about our distribution system, the Independent Insurance Agency channel. Even with organic growth rates climbing from 4.5% in 2017 to just above 6% today, there’s still so much unrealized potential among independent agencies.
“Potential” is a word I hesitate to use because I’ve always disliked it. No matter the endeavor—sports, music, theater or sales—that word is almost always attached to those who have fallen short of success or missed some great opportunity. Often, the word is associated with someone past their prime and usually is prefaced by the word “oh.” “Oh, they had so much potential,” suggests they haven’t done all they could have or should have. They’re going to have regrets at the end of their career unless they make changes now.
If you’re an owner, why not create a culture in your agency that prides itself on overachieving? If you’re a producer, why not constantly do those things that not only increase your potential, but also help you exceed it? The Best Version Pyramid can help you do just that: achieve more than you ever thought possible.
One of the things I always stress is that your numbers (results) are the outcome of the behaviors and strategies you make normal in your agency. The Producer’s BVP focuses on those behaviors and strategies that create predictable and guaranteed results.
The 10 building blocks of the producer’s BVP
As with the Agency’s BVP, the Producer’s BVP consists of 10 foundational stones. For each of them, rate yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being the best).
Rounding Out: You or your agency writes 100% of the clients’ insurance policies.
Retaining: You keep 99% of the clients you want to keep.
Replicating: You provide a world-class experience for your clients, which wows them to the point that they gladly give you referrals and introductions to accounts similar to them.
By implementing this strategy, the producers we work with can expect to grow their books of business by 60% in three years, while reducing the number of clients they have by 60%. We refer to this as the +60% and -60% Strategy.
For example, let’s say a producer has $1 million of commission on their book of business and 100 accounts. If they replicate the top 20% of their customers, they’ll grow by 80%, so their book of business will grow from $1 million to $1.8 million, and from 100 to 120 accounts. At the same time, they must trade down the bottom 80% of their customers, which means they’ll lose 20% or $200,000 of their revenue for a total of $1.6 million of commission vs. $1 million. In the process, they’ll have to eliminate 80 customers, leaving them with 40 customers vs. 100.
Now compare his approach to that of most producers, the majority of whom are rehearsing their presentations during the actual presentation. They almost never practice or rehearse in front of their team, and most have never recorded themselves giving a presentation. The goal is to never lose a sale to someone who is more prepared than you!
The bottom line
To know how you rate on the Best Version Pyramid, first go back and review the 10 stones. Next, rate yourself on each one using a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best. A score of 5 means you’re unequivocally average, and 1 or 2 is absolutely unacceptable. What is your overall Producer’s Best Version Pyramid score?
Here’s how you performed on the Sitkins Scale:
80+ = Excellent! You’re doing a great job, just continue fine-tuning.
60 – 79 = Pretty good. But don’t get complacent and start coasting.
40 – 59 = Mediocre. You’re an average producer with average results; watch out for regrets later in your career.
20 – 39 = Going Downhill. You’re staying busy with Hysterical Activity on the Way to the Grave. You confuse activity with results and, consequently, accomplish very little on a daily basis.
0 – 19 = Come on, really?
Remember, nothing changes if nothing changes! Your best version possible is out there just waiting to emerge. Once that happens, you’ll be able to look back on your career with no regrets. Why would you accept anything less?
Roger Sitkins is the CEO of Sitkins Group, Inc., and developer of The Sitkins Network and The Better Way Agency program. Roger began his career by working in his parents’ insurance agency in Wyandotte, Michigan, and after nearly 40 years has truly become an icon in the industry. He has trained and mentored thousands of insurance professionals. Producers, CEOs, and sales managers with diverse levels of experience have benefited tremendously from his training and leadership.
Recognized as the nation’s top insurance agency results coach and renowned leader for improvement, he believes that if you improve the life of one person, you improve the world. To learn more, visit www.sitkins.com.
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