A business associate of mine once shared a list of some of his favorite small business adages. He has owned and successfully sold several businesses over the years and is proud to have regularly implemented changes to his operations by following some of his own nuggets. He is semi-retired now but always thinking of ways to make operations and procedures better, to produce positive results.
One of his nuggets that I particularly like relates to strategies. For those who have developed a written business strategy in the first place, his advice is to "change the spokes on your wheel rather than reinvent it" - his variation of the common adage.
Sometimes a small change is all that is needed to steer your strategy back in the right direction. We too often get overwhelmed thinking that we need to change everything when business is not coming-in as we had hoped.
This is particularly important to remember when refining the strategies within an agency marketing plan. It could get you where you want to be without a huge amount of changes.
Sometimes referred to as ‘business on the books’ or ‘renewals’, etc., ‘policy expirations’ is also an often loosely used term that to some refers to the book of business that an agency has or will develop over a period of time. At its very essentials, it is what stays on the books. However, “expirations” really encompasses more than that alone. It also includes various information and data about your clients - your valuable customer relations information.
Agents need to clearly understand the wording and meaning of their rights to retain and possibly move their developed business at the termination of an agency contract, for whatever reasons. Also, they need to make sure that their hard-earned and valuable clients’ data does not get jeopardized in any way.
This is just one of the critical points in an agency agreement that needs to be fully understood.
I always recommend that the agency principal have a legal review of the contract, from an attorney who is well-versed in insurance carrier developed contracts.
In some States, both the Independent Insurance Agents Association (IIA) and the Professional Insurance Agents Association (PIA) have archive libraries and related services that can help with contract reviews for their members.
I have known unfortunate agents who have been blind-sided in agency termination situations because they signed an agreement that contained one or more such important sections that they really didn’t understand.