Old School Agents

Apr 27, 2008

  1. David C
    Offline

    David C Guru

    Posts:
    480
    Likes Received:
    2
    The Old School agent was involved in one or more organizations in his community, was a member of the chamber, was highly visible in his town, made friends first, sold insurance second, attended weddings and funerals of friends and clients, and often at the funeral was asked to sit with the family.

    He didn't risk his reputation by jumping on the next hottest thing to come around. He wasn't licensed with 18 companies, more like 3-4.

    His clients saw him face to face several times per year.

    He advertised on the outfield walls at the baseball parks, and sponsored a football team. He consistently had an ad in the local newspaper.

    He knew you and your parents, knew when you were sick, knew who you were dating, what your plans were after high school, and knew when you were getting married.

    He never churned his business to get first year commissions, his persistency was incredible.

    Most of them never bought a lead. Their business was built on long term relationships, people knew they were real, and they knew they were trustworthy.

    These are just a few generalizations of the insurance guys I knew growing up, most of them are retired or dead now, I have tons of respect for them, unfortunately I see few left who are cut out of the same material as these guys. No disrespect meant towards any of you.
     
    David C, Apr 27, 2008
    #1
  2. LGilmore
    Offline

    LGilmore Guru

    Posts:
    4,121
    Likes Received:
    203
    State:
    Washington
    "No disrespect meant towards any of you."

    None taken. However, you're only aware of one part of the picture. Old school agents worked for old school companies. I used to work for an old school company. One day the guy at the top changed, and my life changed too. You see, no longer were agents seen as the strength of the company, they were seen differently, not as an asset, but as an expense.

    Promises made to agents and kept for decades became empty words. Trusting management to do the right thing became a distant memmory. The rules of the game began to change and you never knew where you stood. It wasn't your business any longer, it was theirs. If they have to break a few laws and pay a few fines or settlements so be it. It is a new day and a new way.

    Yea, I miss the old days and ways too sometimes. But I realized that I'd rather have my own ethics than listen to somebody mouth the words about the subject... no offense of course.
     
    LGilmore, Apr 27, 2008
    #2
  3. Mr. Bill
    Offline

    Mr. Bill Guru

    Posts:
    2,045
    Likes Received:
    10
    So, my "local" newspaper serves about 4,000,000 people. I'd be a fool to advertise in it. I'll let the Big Boys do it. Y'all noticed that UBS lost $37 BILLION and yet they still advertise in Conde Nast Traveler? Whoa, nelly! Oh yea, and remember when Merrill Lynch helped bankrupt Orange County, CA??? Well, Merrill's doing quite nicely now, as well. So just because you spend some dough doing charitable work doesn't mean you're doing business ethically, morally, or fiscally responsibly.

    As far as local sponsorship, while a great idea, and absolutely something I've done, I have also found (as well as others) that the concept of "loyalty" or reciprocation is quite lost on people. Therefore, I don't do it with the expectation of business.

    By the way, there are more than twice as many people in the good ol' USA today than there was 50 years ago. Which should mean we'll double again in about 25 years. Which also means a whole lotta more business and the likelihood of a whole lotta bad agents as well. Sadly.
     
    Mr. Bill, Apr 27, 2008
    #3
  4. rapidrobert
    Offline

    rapidrobert Guru

    Posts:
    301
    Likes Received:
    0
    The original post is 100% accurate. What has changed is our society. Its an ethical morass. Selfishness is the rule and not the exception. Things are faster paced and inflation has made it a necessity that most families have both spouses working outside the home. The shallow and me driven drivel on TV is at an all time low and infiltrates the thinking of most Americans.
    However, we are SO much more advanced that we have crap on 180 channels now instead of 3 so people now spend hours in front of the "boob tube" being socialized. We also now have the internet... now people can spend whole months of their lives without actually knowing how to politely deal with a real human being. THAT'S the difference between then and now...and yes its affected the insurance industry.
     
  5. HomeService
    Offline

    HomeService Guru

    Posts:
    2,075
    Likes Received:
    41
    State:
    Texas
    I learned almost everything I know about insurance from old school agents at old school companies, back in the 1980's and early 1990's. These guys were 50-70 years old back then, and could really tell some stories! I consider myself kind of old school, and am in search of that in everything I do now in 2008, and am quite regularly disappointed. Change is not always a good thing.
     
  6. CHUMPS FROM OXFORD
    Offline

    CHUMPS FROM OXFORD Guru

    Posts:
    10,261
    Likes Received:
    50
    State:
    Ohio
    I also learned a lot from them. But...

    "He never churned his business to get first year commissions, his persistency was incredible"

    Not all of those "old school" agents were like that.
     
  7. moonlightandmargaritas
    Offline

    moonlightandmargaritas Guru

    Posts:
    9,748
    Likes Received:
    38
    State:
    Florida
    Geez, I could almost see Robert Young smoking his pipe, or Ward Cleaver putting on his cardigan while reading that post...

    While we're now in the information age (I think this internet thing might catch on) what I take away from this is that it's all about relationships.

    Offline or online, that'll stay the same.
     
  8. HomeService
    Offline

    HomeService Guru

    Posts:
    2,075
    Likes Received:
    41
    State:
    Texas
    Boy, I don't know moonlight, is it possible to make a relationship over the internet that is not related to dating?
     
  9. Mr. Bill
    Offline

    Mr. Bill Guru

    Posts:
    2,045
    Likes Received:
    10
    Absolutely. You just have to know where to look on Craigslist. Many of those posters are not looking for relationships OR dating.
     
    Mr. Bill, Apr 28, 2008
    #9
  10. Bob_The_Insurance_Guy
    Offline

    Bob_The_Insurance_Guy Guru

    Posts:
    1,908
    Likes Received:
    15
    State:
    Georgia
    No offense taken. Maybe I haven't said this enough. I've never bought a lead in 11 years in the business. I've never hired a telemarketer. In what should be a one call close, usually takes me 2 or 3 (please see the Advantra Freedom Thread), and I currently live no more than 7 miles from where I went to elementary and high school.

    In this day and age of the internet, you can still be "old school". Either it's in you, or it's not.
     
Loading...