If you're hiring for your agency, you're likely faced with a dilemma of bringing on experience versus potential. Experienced agents are going to be well-versed in the industry, but they may also come with bad habits, selling styles they're accustomed to and they'll probably prefer to do their business the way they like to do their business.
Bringing on young, inexperienced agents where you see potential for them in your agency is a great way to get some fresh blood in the water, but you want always be sure they're equipped with basic DOS and DONTS before you send them out into the selling game. Clients may see a new agent's inexperience as a negative, but if you've trained them to avoid common pitfalls, you should have new producer on your hands in no time.
Here are a few basic tips for getting a new agent on the right track from the word GO.
1. GET THEM OUT THERE
No one gets anywhere in business alone and we all know that from experience. If you have an agent starting from scratch, get them out into the field creating relationships ASAP. They should make it a priority to be at any and all networking events in your area. It'll be awkward at first, but the best way to get wet is to jump right in. Arm them with business cards and a general sense of who they should be looking to speak to and what info they're looking to get, then see what they report back to you in order to see what they need to work on.
2. GIVE THEM A GOOD PARTNER
It's typical to have a current employee train a new one, but pay close attention to who you're choosing to show a true newbie the ropes. Make sure you choose a veteran producer to be sure they can cover the gamete of sales challenges that may arise, while pulling from a lifetime of experience. Send them out to shadow them on calls so your new agents can benefit from seeing what long-term business relationships look like while learning tips on how to sell at the same time.
3. GIVE THEM A SCRIPT
Making calls is hard. Especially if you've never done it and you have no idea what to expect. YBR Insurance Sales Scripts are a great tool to help new agents become comfortable with making sales calls. YBR's software also records calls so that management can keep an eye on a new agent's progress and step in where they think the agent needs help. Also, using a script makes the sales process smoother, easier and more low-pressure for both the agent and the customer.
4. LET THEM FAIL A LITTLE
While you don't want to let a new agent completely bomb out, we all know we learn a lot more from the word NO than we do from the word YES. It'll be more memorable to a new agent if they fail trying than if they fail from someone telling that something doesn't work. If they come to you with an idea that you think may not work, let them try it out and learn from themselves, then you can redirect.
Guiding a new agent and keeping an eye on their progress benefits both the agent and your agency. The more support you give them, the more lucrative it will be for you in the long run. And leaving a new agent unattended could be disastrous for your agency. You want to see how they're selling so you can keep them on the right path for the long haul.