What Drives You?


GA Medicare Expert
5000 Post Club
No doubt, all of us in this industry are in it to earn a living. Some do better than others.

I stumbled in to this business in college. One of the few universities that offered insurance courses, much less a major. I took Introduction to Insurance & Risk Management on a whim. My professor was an associate dean at the College of Business and chair of the insurance department. He was a former exec & trainer at Met and later a professor at Wharton and the American College.

A truly remarkable and intelligent man who had the ability to take the mundane (insurance) and actually make it interesting.

Perhaps what caught my attention more than anything was his burning desire to educate others in a way that helped them grasp the concept of risk management and at the same time make the complex easy for almost anyone to grasp.

Underneath it all was a desire to help others.

I ended up majoring in insurance and spent the next 32 years in the industry, mostly in the health insurance side and almost all of that in dealing with large group health plans.

For the last 4 years or so I have volunteered time in various capacities, including online communities, answering questions for consumers & agents about this industry.

I am bothered by some of the mistakes consumers make, and even more so by the agents who lead them in the wrong direction. What drives me is not the money or the desire to keep score of how many "kills" I had that week, but how many people are better informed, and hopefully better off, than they were before we met.

A guy I worked for years ago used to say what goes around comes around. I never cared much for him and had almost no respect for him. He was an *** and egotistical. He also used to say it is my way or the highway.

Eventually he was shown the highway but not before taking a good company and a good division in the completely wrong direction. His decisions impacted a lot of folks in a negative way.

But even then, I learned something I always knew, just never heard it phrased that way.

What goes around comes around.

I live my professional life based on a few tenets.

I never recommend anything I would not buy.

(From Kenny Rogers) I never count my money while sitting at the table.

I am driven by a desire to help others understand what they need, why they need it, and why I recommend one plan of action over another.

Following these three tenets allows me to sleep well at night.

What drives you?
I was told by a successful friend who was in the mortgage business, that if you concentrate on doing your best and keep at it, the money and success will take care of itself.

"Believe in the best... have a goal for the best, never be satisfied with less than your best, try your best, and in the long run things will turn out for the best." - Henry Ford

That is the quote that I have on my monthly goal excel spreadsheet.

If you are a professional in this wild world of insurance, you can sleep well at night knowing that you are making individuals and / or familes secure, including your own.
There is a book with a title, something like "Do what you love, the money will follow". I read it once, or maybe twice. Lot's of good advice in it.
Just a wag, but probably you (Chumps) are driven like I am . . . a desire to help others and you truly enjoy what you do. Nothing else really makes sense.
it's funny you said that, years ago my Dad gave me that advice after I graduated high school. He simply said Son do what you love to do and you'll never work a day in your life. Pretty good advice from a man who didn't finish school but had more "man" in his little finger than I got in my whole body.
It obviously comes down to a love of what you do and the feeling that I'm really helping people. I've been in sales for over 14 years and never had that feeling. I've also always wanted to run my own small business and insurance for me is almost the perfect business:

*No physical inventory

*Almost zero up-front investment

*Don't have to deal with client's money (selling health)

*Nice to sell products where the price cannot be negotiated. This impedes the sales for most other products as clients shop to get "the best price." Just image the nightmare if broker A could quote a plan for $350 and broker B could sell the exact same plan for $310 by giving up a few commission points. Like other areas of sales, clients would call 5 different brokers to find one who's willing to make $50 just to get the sale.

*Ability to generate business for free (cold-calling)

*Cannot negotiate away your commission (with in most sales jobs as you negotiate price your commission evaporates)

*Can actually be independent. Much different from being "independent" as a sales rep for "XYZ" company where you get bitched out, endless mind games, production quotas, etc...

*Renewal income which almost no other sales profession offers

*Can represent almost every carrier.

*No corporate games

*Pretty much cannot be "fired." I can only imagine losing your appointments/license if you're engaging in illegal or unethical practices. Barring that you have a career for life.

*Only career I've had where I actually can control my own life. I've never once had any sales job where I can literally pack it up and go on vacation without having to run it past a single sole. I get to attend all my son's game, all my family events, etc...

*Only carrer I've had where you can legitimately make six figures.