Captive Agent and Contract Issues

Discussion in 'General Insurance Agent Discussions' started by joeycap, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. joeycap
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    joeycap New Member

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    I am a "captive" agent. Yet, I am 1099'd, lease my computer, pay for my own marketing expenses, & my E&O which are all deducted from my commission. In addition, my contract indicates that it "shall not be construed to create the relationship of employer and employee" between said parties. I am not on a draw and receiving no leads. Yet I am been given a hard time from my "superiors" regarding production and have been threatened to terminate my contract if I don't pick it up. Here is my question...what do they care if I am not producing up to their expectations if I am not an employee and an "independent contractor"? Could I produce more...probably, but it would jeopardize the relationships I have established i.e family and friends. Am I wrong?
     
  2. lflashman
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    lflashman Expert

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    I was a manager at a captive company, and yes, we would terminate underperforming agents. Quite frequently actually. One reason is we were providing leads to the agents, and if you weren't going to sell them, then we didn't need you. The big reason was that we wanted to build a culture of success in the office. If there were a couple agents doing nothing then it seemed to pull the whole office down. Other decent agents we were trying to motivate and get producing at a higher level would complain we were being too hard on them and letting some other agent slide. Bottom line, if you don't like working the way they want you to, find a job you'd be happy with. You'll lose the 1099 arguement every time. Quit whining and start working, or just quit and go independent and starve because you still won't want to work. And don't reply saying their not providing anything, because, if that's true, then, why would you be there anyways.
     
  3. xrac
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    xrac Guru

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    If you are not producing you are occupying an office and space and management time they can used on someone else who will produce (they hope). They can then divide your orphan clients among prospective or producing agents. It is how they operate. They don't want offices filled with dozens of agents that are dead wood. They know that 5 producers are worth more than 50 that are marginal. That is why they have minium producation standards. If you are with one of the old line career companies there are also benefits in place that cost them.
     
  4. joeycap
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    joeycap New Member

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    First of all I am not whining. Second of all, they are not providing leads. Thirdly, I don't work out of an office, I work out of my home. If I want an office, I have to find one and pay for it out of my pocket. I joined the local Chamber and had to pay for it out of my own pocket. I can't build a website on my own I have to use the corporate site. They won't allow me to use social media as a networking tool.

    And "Iflashman" why aren't you managing at the agency anymore? "Judge not lest thee be judged"
     
  5. Frank Stastny
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    Frank Stastny Guru

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    Joey,

    You sound like a relatively new agent. You don't sound like you have explored deeply enough being an independent agent and the benefits over what you are currently doing.

    If you would like to discuss it in depth feel free to give me a call. The only thing selling insurance provides is the opportunity to either succeed or fail and do it all by yourself without any help from anyone.

    As an independent agent I am in total charge of my destiny and income. There have been plenty of times I would liked to have someone else to lay it on. Being out there bare to the world can be a great motivator. It teaches one what they are made of.
     
  6. xrac
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    xrac Guru

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    That is a bum deal and I would bail. Why do you want to stay?
     
  7. HarryRenard
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    HarryRenard Guru

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    He doesn't have a choice :no:.

    Career Insurance agents are at high risk for Stockholm Syndrome, they fall in love with their captures and can't leave even though they have nothing to offer.

    It's very sad i've seen it a million times.
     
  8. lflashman
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    lflashman Expert

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    Good question. Simple answer. I make more money as an agent than running around chasing after whiney, non-producing agents. The branch manager was responsible for the recruiting, and he'd hire anyone that could fog a mirror and said yes. After going through agents every 3-6 mos, I decided I could make more money with less aggravation if I went back to producing. But, if you read my previous posts, you'll see that I have not complained once about it, or the company I worked for. Basically I plateaued with that company. If I wanted more I'd have had to work harder than I wanted to, and, I made a decision that I could make the same money on my own and work less. But you won't find me complaining about it. That's just the way it is.

    As to your claims that you basically get nothing from this captive company. I asked before, why are you still there if they provide nothing? Why are you even resisting the manager telling you he has to let you go if you don't pick it up? What are the benefits of staying? Only your ego, if what you say is true. Why haven't you gone to him/her and said, "Mr. Manager, I am finding that the commission rates for selling the same product as an independent agent are quite a bit higher than what you all are paying. As, I don't see where this company is providing any leads, training, support, office space, or anything at all, I feel I must resign." Man up for crying out loud. Don't come on a forum just to whine and complain. Quit. If they're giving you a hard time about not producing up to minimum standards/expectations, then that means you're on track to have an income of $15K-$25K/yr. if that. There isn't a captive company out there that if you're making even $30K/yr. that will have that conversation with an agent. Heck, why do you even want to keep going if that's the case? Go independent, if you want the freedom to do nothing and make that kind of money, otherwise find another career.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2010
  9. VolAgent
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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    Honestly, what is the point of being captive/career if you aren't getting something for it? At minimum you should be getting benefits and retirement. If you aren't getting training or leads to go with that, its time to find the door. Stop complaining about it and do something. If you really like the products, odds are you can still sell them after you leave.
     
  10. CFP83
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    CFP83 Guru

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    Re: Captive Agent and Contract Issues.

    Nail on the head HarryRenard......Stockholm Syndrome....wow what a totally accurate way to describe the events that happen during the hostige situation of being a career agent. No matter how much money producers see management taking from them, no matter how the captive company may fail in competitive situations...the hostige captive agent will defend there captures.....ie their career company

    Very well put and an accurate observation
     
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