This post is part of a series on how to cultivate three traits that will help any insurance agent be more successful: being persistent, productive and personable. Click on each link to read them all. Part 1, Part 3.

Learning to be Productive

Whether you work at a larger insurance agency or as a solo agent, you’ve probably got the worry of production constantly hanging out in the back of your head. Have you been produced enough this month? Have you increased production over last year? Are you as productive as the other agents at your agency or in your region?

The pressure to produce comes with the territory in insurance sales. It’s common to have sales goals and quotas to meet. You are expected to convert a certain number of leads or write a specific number of policies. But to do that, it’s also helpful to give some thought to who you are and the conditions that help you to be a person who can produce. When and why are you most productive? It’s worth exploring.

1)     Recognize Your Personas

We all take on different personas depending on the situation we are in. The brash version of you might show up on the ski slopes, while the contrite version of you might be the one who appears in traffic court. Which version of you has the most success with sales?

Think about some of your recent successes and jot down what each interaction was like. Do you sell more when you are friendly or businesslike? Laidback or aggressive? As a talker or a listener? Chances are there are two or three personas that tend to work for you. Once you know what they are, you can intentionally call that persona to the fore when it’s time to produce.

2)     Keep a Journal

We all have natural rhythms to our lives. Maybe you’re a morning person who loves to get up before your family to get a start on the day. Or maybe you get your best work done after a long shower, hearty breakfast, a chance to read the news and a big cup of coffee.

Try keeping a simple journal that details your eating habits, sleeping patterns, exercise routines and anything else that affects how you operate day to day. At the end of each workday, rate how productive you were and make note of anything unusual. After a month or two, set aside time to browse your journal and start to look for connections between your habits and your productivity. Over time, you’ll be better able to set yourself up for success by recreating the circumstances that put you at your best.

3)     Experiment with Time Management Techniques

If you have trouble managing your time, you’re hardly alone. There’s a cottage industry built around helping people manage their days. Why not try a couple out to see if they’ll work for you?

Options include things like calendaring systems that use color-coding and prioritization to make it easy to know what you should do next or software that will block your usage of particular websites if you need help ignoring an online distraction. There are also timing techniques like the Pomodoro method, which prescribes a series of set chunks of time during the day—some for working, others for taking a break—that some find helpful to eliminate procrastination.

Remember that even if none of the methods out there are the right fit for you, you might still pick up helpful ideas that you can adapt to your own circumstances.

4)     Learn from Other Producers

Another great way to become more productive is to learn from someone else who’s already got it down. Most people are happy to share their expertise—as long as you make it easy for them to do so.

Targeted questions like “What’s some of the dialogue you use when you’re trying to sell an umbrella policy?” feel less burdensome than vague ones like “How do you sell umbrella policies?” Offering to ask questions over a lunch that you buy will take less time out of their day because they’d be stopping to eat anyway. (You can still do this even during the coronavirus pandemic; ask for their favorite fast-casual restaurant and have food delivered before your online meeting.)

When someone is generous enough to share their time and expertise, always follow up with a thank you and an offer to return a favor if they ever need it. You never know what kind of symbiotic relationship may grow that will benefit you both.

Another option that is always available to the agents who buy leads from Hometown Quotes is to talk to your regional director. Our regional directors are all experienced, successful former insurance agents who can share solid tips to help you increase your productivity. You can reach them at 800.820.8921—they love nothing more than to help our clients succeed.


Brendan Sera-Shriar

Brendan Sera-Shriar is the CMO for Hometown Quotes and a Staff Writer for Hometown University.

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