What’s your agency’s most powerful asset? I would say it’s your customer service representatives. Why? Well because they are the front lines of your agency, so in my opinion that automatically makes them your agency’s most powerful asset.
I have a question for all agency owners: “How much do you invest in your staff to improve their sales skills?” This is in essence the million dollar question. Most agency owners have informed me that they have chosen to not include a sales consultant to train their staff. My answer to that is WHY? Think about this example: Why did Shaquille O’Neal have a terrible free-throw percentage during his career? It’s because he never practiced. So how can an agency owner blame their staff for poor performance if an investment isn’t made to let them practice their selling skills? Agencies need is a higher closing ratio, not more leads, and that can occur through proper sales training.
Last year I hired a sales coach/trainer who told me that while I love marketing and am good at what I do, my job is find ways to process business more efficiently, install procedures to accomplish this, and then teach the staff to close the deal. The coach told me that what is really important is the final steps of the closing process, not generating more leads and bringing in more quotes. Once the finalization phase was completed, then we could work on an entire sales procedure.
Just with the implantation of these two steps, your agency will close more business. Now I understand you may be skeptical about that statistic, but give it a year to try. My agency started this process last November and I have to say I am a believer. First of all, our staff is far less stressed, making the agency a better all- around work place. The second thing is our closing ratio has increased significantly, and third it has allowed us to ask for referrals. This structure has given our agency new life.
I’m telling you this story because it is absolutely NECESSARY for an agency owner to invest in your staff. Just think if you could stream line the process, make staff happier because they are less stressed, and close more business. To further my agency in the process of enhancing communication with our customers, we implemented a 36 point digital touch system that plays a huge role in our communication skills. The whole deal about making more money in this industry is to find ways to communicate better both within your agency and with your customers.
The moral of this short story is to invest in your staff and the returns will be huge. It’s the best investment I have ever made and I cannot wait to see our agency’s numbers continue to grow.