looking at insurance career looking for practical advice

Dec 20, 2007

  1. sams66
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    sams66 Expert

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    hello, just found this website. I am considering a career change over to the insurance and financial services industry. I have been in sales and project management and client development with construction and environmental services for about 10 years. I am very interested in the business and recently passed my Ohio Life and A/H test. The companies I am considering and have offers to join presently are:
    western southern
    Northwestern Mutual
    Met Life
    My thoughts from the cheap seats are this about each company from my 2-3 discussions with each
    WSLife: concentrates on mid income families, only sell their products, not well know, lot of turn over, pay a small salary to get you started, over good benefits and compensation package
    NWFN seem to be very well respected, no starting salary, in business for yourself, higher end client goals, opp to make a lot of money, good benefits and retirement package, their products seem to outperform others
    METLIFE most well know, office has younger vibe, good benefits, good retirement package, offer a nice start up salary for first 20 weeks, mulitple different products
    Please be as candid as you can. I appreciate your help. this would be a big career change, but I would like to move to a different career path and enjoy the financial industries.

    thanks

    Sam
     
    sams66, Dec 20, 2007
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  2. CHUMPS FROM OXFORD
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    CHUMPS FROM OXFORD Guru

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    The second two are the best of your options. Good training with both. Met will give you a broader range of products with different companies. NW will tend to focus more on life insurance and they have the solid products to back that up.

    What part of Ohio are you located?
     
  3. moonlightandmargaritas
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    It'll be tougher to succeed with Northwestern Mutual, unless you have some sort of "natural market" with business continuation, estate planning and the like...know a lot of people with a lot of money?

    If you do, it could be very rewarding. If not, you'll starve.

    With Met, they may give you a book to work (Chumps?). You'll have people to see on the old policy review interview.

    They may even throw in a Snoopy tie, or ride on the blimp...
     
  4. Delta76
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    Delta76 Guru

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    I agree that either Met or NML could be good choices. It really depends on the local agency more than anything else. I would also add Mass Mutual and Guardian to your list. All else being equal (and it rarely is), I like Mass Mutual. They will allow you to work investments along with the life products, they have competitive products, and here's a biggie, broker contracts. If you leave after a while, you can still service and sell your current clients while at NML you won't be able to do so.
     
    Delta76, Dec 20, 2007
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  5. moonlightandmargaritas
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    Excellent post, Delta.

    The quality of the GA (who ya gonna learn from?) is of the utmost importance - more so than company.
     
  6. sams66
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    you guys know anything about Western Southern? one of my best friends is a very well compensated district manager with them in Cincinnatti and he says their support is first rate, and compensation is up there as well.

    Even with my friend there, I was leaning towards Met Life, for a couple reasons, (people know who they area, the various products, the younger atmosphere). Northwestern seems very structured and very conservative, but everything I here is that they have the products everyone wants? is that BS? northwestern is where you want to be if you are working with small biz owners?

    I am a hard worker and have a large list of clients, large and small business owners that I am friends with, from both growing up in this area as well as from 18 years of completing construction and environmental cleanup jobs across the country. the last 10 spent focused on the relationship management and new business development.

    my big thing is I want to learn to be the best agent i can be. i want this to be successful.

    thanks for the advice,

    by the way "chumps from Oxford" I am from Toledo area. I see that you are from Beruit in your avatar. my heritage is lebanese on my dads side. large middle eastern both christian and muslim in NW Ohio and SE MI.

    thanks

    Sam
     
    sams66, Dec 20, 2007
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  7. CHUMPS FROM OXFORD
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    CHUMPS FROM OXFORD Guru

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    Hi Sam

    I think I drive by that Mosque around Toledo on I75 (on the right side) when we are heading North. Yes, I noticed the large population in that area.

    Lebanon is a great country and needs to eradicate the Iranian and Syrian influence as quickly as possible. But that's just my opinion.

    I know a few people in the Met Toledo office. Good atmosphere. As mentioned by Delta and Moon...training is everything. Usually, new reps are furnished with decent leads. That, coupled with your contacts should give you a good amount of activity.


    Moon...I'm still waiting for the Snoopy tie. But I did get a ride on the blimp!
     
  8. Dave020
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    Dave020 Super Moderator Moderator

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    My $.02 having been with both NML and Mass.

    If you want panache, name recognition and the ability to get appointments with people who have big bucks, NML is your choice.
    NML will open the doors to higher end clients as they know that name and the reputation. Products are not the most flexible (no UL) but major kick ass dividend rates for last 150 years or so. Annual meetings in Milwaukee are a blast, too, and there's this one strip club near the Water Street Brewery.....oh, nevermind.

    Mass is good, you can always get a broker contract if you want to go indy and their investment side is a little smoother than NML (under Baird). Also Mass lets you broker out term life through Bysis (this may have changed to another) so you can get the higher end FYC on cheap term sales.

    Met, eh, ok company but you won't get in the same doors with Met or Pru that you can with the "Quiet Company".

    NYL might be another option too, good name recognition although seriously NML dominates in the wealthy markets.

    Believe me, I got many appointments in silicon valley with major players just by being with NML - you could always sense on the phone call that exec was thinking "oh, I know that company, you guys are good".

    Whichever you choose, I would suggest partnering up immediately with a senior agent there who you get along with and trust. Split your commissions with that agent and you will find yourself writing some major business. All you have to do is get the appointments, the senior agent will do the rest and you will learn a ton in the process. I wrote business cases with NML at $100k annual premium whole life insurance just sitting there keeping my mouth shut. I learned a ton and didn't mind getting 40% of the commission just for getting the appointment.

    Dave
    The David Fluker Health Insurance Agency - Gilroy, California - Serving California Residents Since 1995
     
    Dave020, Dec 20, 2007
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  9. Dave020
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    I guess NML is now NMFN - so we'll just say Northwestern Mutual LOL

    Dave
     
    Dave020, Dec 20, 2007
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  10. lyndell
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    lyndell Guest

    Hello I am looking at working for NWM and I would like to hear from people who have had a good experience or bad and what were the ways you built your referrals. Thanks

    Dale
     
    lyndell, Oct 17, 2009
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