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I'm new to insurance, and don't like my situation

Survivor

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This may be a bit long, but I ask you to read through it because I'm in need of some advice.

I was recently hired by an insurance company that has what I would call aggressive in its hiring practices. So, with money saved up (and tickled that I could become something like an insurance agent so young), I left my steady job to try my hand at something I thought could make me a lot of money through commissions. I don't want to name the company that I'm a captive agent for, but I would like to describe my situation so those of you with experience in the insurance business can perhaps tell me if I'm in a good situation or need to look for another company.

I had very little face to face training, as the nearest office for this company is some distance away. Thus, I work from home much of the time which is sometimes difficult to explain to people. I paid for an online training program out of pocket, my exam "sitting fee" out of pocket, and license registration fee out of pocket. As I said, I'm a captive agent with really only one "good" policy with a few (limited) benefit levels to stand on. The other policies I would say are more suited to some one who just can't afford other insurance or are in horrible health as the benefits are arguably not worth the premiums. I can really only pitch to individuals as the group policies aren't really group policies and require each employee to take an appointment to discuss their premium and benefits (at no discount). It is more of a "Hey, can I try and sell all of your employees some insurance, and maybe save you money on taxes if a certain amount of them sign up." I'm not down talking my products, I would say it fits some folks needs, but then again, I just don't know what other companies are offering.

My commission schedule is generally as follows:
Lower age bracket: 200% first month, 90% third, 70% forth, 50%, then 10% there on out
Middle age bracket: 170% first month, then lower residuals
Older age bracket: 120% first month, then even lower residuals

Problem is, that schedule only applies when there is BANK DRAFT. If they don't do bank draft and instead opt for direct bill (which I'm finding many people prefer), the commission is only 30%, then some "piddily" little residuals. I've only been at this a couple weeks, and honestly had prepared myself by accepting that I probably wouldn't make any money the first month. Well, my little heart was broken when a deal that I had been working on that would have provided about $600 dollars in commission only provided $150 because the customer said, "If I have to do bank draft, I don't want it." I've found this to be the case with other prospects as well. Frankly, a 30% commission is usually not worth the time and gas I spend on prospecting and going to appointments.

I am given brochures, "pull tabs," and "under window wiper" fliers at no cost. The company will sell me signs to put out, if I choose to do so. I have put out a lot of fliers out, but due to ZERO response after hundreds of fliers have been put out I am beginning to question if some one would actually call about insurance advertised on a flier underneath their windshield wiper. I am given some telemarketer generated leads to work off of, but the majority of my leads are suppose to (have to if I am going to make it) come from my own lead production.

Have I got a pretty good things going for me, or do I need to look elsewhere?

BTW: If anyone has managed to deduce which company I represent, please do not broadcast the name to the forum as I'm not sure if I'm actually in a bad position or am just being a cry baby because this is just a difficult business.

Thanks.
 
Why so secretive?

I suggest you look for the company name using the search function. You will more than likely find a ton of info on them...especially if it is who I think it is...
 
I'm "so secretive" because, since I'm new, I don't know if I'm getting screwed and taken advantage of or if I'm getting a square deal and just being a whiney baby.
 
I've PMed you the answer Winter. As stated above, I don't want to bad mouth the company I work for unless I actually know I'm getting screwed. A search on the company shows a bad opinion here, however.
 
Problem is, that schedule only applies when there is BANK DRAFT. If they don't do bank draft and instead opt for direct bill (which I'm finding many people prefer), the commission is only 30%, then some "piddily" little residuals. I've only been at this a couple weeks, and honestly had prepared myself by accepting that I probably wouldn't make any money the first month. Well, my little heart was broken when a deal that I had been working on that would have provided about $600 dollars in commission only provided $150 because the customer said, "If I have to do bank draft, I don't want it." I've found this to be the case with other prospects as well.
Thanks.

I really can't offer an opinion about the situation you find yourself in since I only work in the senior market.

I can though, comment on the portion of your post shown above.

I experienced the same thing when I first started selling insurance. My problem was that when I mentioned "bank draft" I made it sound like I was
apologizing for signing them up that way. As soon as they said they didn't want to I caved in. Boy was I green.

It needs to be handled like any other objection you receive. There are very positive reasons for some one to use bank draft. If they get sick the premium is paid. They don't run the risk of missing a payment because they are ill.

Premiums are kept lower because there is no admin fee in sending out statements or receiving payments. It is much more efficient and their premiums are always paid on time.

It is just like them writing a check every month only the bank does it for them. It does not allow the insurance company to "take money out of their account".

If you are not sure how bank draft works go to your bank and have them explain it to you. I have found that a lot of people have the wrong concept of what a bank draft is.

Today, all my clients are on bank draft. It really isn't that hard to "sell" once you have the facts and know how to "sell" it.

Good luck.
 
I really can't offer an opinion about the situation you find yourself in since I only work in the senior market.

I can though, comment on the portion of your post shown above.

I experienced the same thing when I first started selling insurance. My problem was that when I mentioned "bank draft" I made it sound like I was
apologizing for signing them up that way. As soon as they said they didn't want to I caved in. Boy was I green.

It needs to be handled like any other objection you receive. There are very positive reasons for some one to use bank draft. If they get sick the premium is paid. They don't run the risk of missing a payment because they are ill.

Premiums are kept lower because there is no admin fee in sending out statements or receiving payments. It is much more efficient and their premiums are always paid on time.

It is just like them writing a check every month only the bank does it for them. It does not allow the insurance company to "take money out of their account".

If you are not sure how bank draft works go to your bank and have them explain it to you. I have found that a lot of people have the wrong concept of what a bank draft is.

Today, all my clients are on bank draft. It really isn't that hard to "sell" once you have the facts and know how to "sell" it.

Good luck.
Frank - excellent point and one that I've forgotten. I too apologize for bank drafts when it really should be presented as a positive.

I can always learn from my elders.

Rick
 
I didn't intend for this post to become a guessing game, but since everyone seems to already know, it is UA. Everyone seems to have a quite poor veiw of this company.

How exactly am I "screwing people" if I explain cost and explain benefits? I'm not asking this question to engage in debate, I seriously would like to know how this is "screwing" people. I am an ethical guy that absolutely HATES some one that takes advantage of others, so I really hate to think that by selling for UA I'm doing this myself. I know full well the limitations of the policies, and make this clear to my potential customers. My manager has told me not to get into too much detail during an appointment. I really looked at this as more of a sales technique than a means of concealment. Either way, I like to get into the details with folks because I don't like the idea of Mom and Dad taking little Suzie to see a physician only to find it's not covered when the claim is denied. Could some one suggest another company that will coddle me a bit that has policies that folks would be delighted to hear the details on?

Frank:
You have a very vaild point. When I encounter this objection, I try to explain, much in the same way you outlined above, why they should use bank draft. Problem is, I find that people have a general fear of bank draft or else like to count their expenses as they pay them. I understand a company's reasons for pushing bank draft, but I think I'm seeing too much of a disparity in my commissions if they opt for direct bill vs. draft. Either way you cut it, I wrote 6,000 in AP (assuming it stays in force for a year, of course) and I just can't see a reason for me to earn 75% less over method of payment. Are all companies like this, or is it more contained to UA and the like?

Thanks to all for the experienced insight.
 
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