The Top 6 Qualities of a Good Insurance Agent
What are the qualities of a good insurance agent you should be looking for when you are searching for an agent? Your insurance agent helps you make important decisions to protect you and your family – let’s make sure you have a good one.
The Top 6 Qualities of a Good Insurance Agent
Here are the top six qualities of a good insurance agent:
- Educator Over a Seller.
- Good Listener.
- Problem Solver.
- Authentic & Likable.
Let’s take a look at each one of these qualities and why they are important.
1. Educator Over a Seller
No one wants to be just sold to. You want to be helped, informed and guided. That is why it is so important to pick an insurance agent that is an educator rather than a seller.
One of the reasons I encourage everyone to find an independent insurance agent is that independent agents do not have to push just one insurance company. This goes for Medicare, life insurance, health and even home and auto.
As an example, for those of you that don’t know me, I am an independent agent that specializes in Medicare insurance. When I meet with clients, I spend time helping them understand the two basic ways to set-up their Medicare. Then, I let them make an informed decision that is best for their unique situation. As a licensed representative for many companies I can feel like an educator and not a “salesperson.” This is an important distinction.
The Insurance Industry is constantly changing. Insurance companies roll out new products regularly. In addition, companies create new ways to use these products to best protect yourself and your family. You need an agent that truly enjoys learning about these changes and products so they can keep your financial plan up-to-date.
LTC “Learner” Example
For example, in the Long Term Care (LTC) insurance world, it is good to have an agent that can help you be creative with how to fund long-term care expenses. As the LTC products have changed and premiums have priced people out of the market, you need an agent that likes to learn about using different types of products that can meet LTC needs (like IUL riders).
The more information and insurance education your agent has, the more they can effectively meet your needs.
Medicare “Learner” Example
Again, to use my situation as another example, I sell Medicare and the Medicare plan landscape becoming crowded with options. In this niche, education is more important than ever. However, less agents are dedicating themselves to certify with all the Medicare options.
Medicare Advantage sales takes a lot of education. I had to take roughly 17 different tests on various Medicare Advantage (MA) plans offered in my service area just for 2020. In addition, all Medicare agents that sell MA must retake these tests every year as they are necessary to understand plan changes.
This is a big reason why independent agents that are fully certified in both Medicare Advantage and Medigap are difficult to find, but necessary for making informed decisions. My advice is it is worth it to have an agent that understands both well.
3. Good Listener
Insurance solutions should meet your needs and not the needs of the insurance agent. That is why being a good listener is one of the qualities of a good insurance agent.
You need to feel like your insurance agent has fully understood you, your family and your financial situation. Make sure you have an agent that asks lots of good questions. Moreover, make sure your agent actually listens to your answers.
4. Problem Solver
Creating the best insurance solution for your needs requires active problem solving. No two situations are exactly alike. We have already established that you should have an agent that is up-to-date on the latest products and trends in insurance. Then, you need an agent that can synthesize this information into a solution that meets your unique needs.
You may not realize it, but creativity is a big part of being a good insurance agent. Insurance is certainly used for asset protection, but it can also be a creative tool for retirement funds and estate building.
Honesty and integrity come as a package deal. Insurance agents should have both and demonstrate it actively to earn your trust. Enough said.
6. Authentic & Likable
You must like your insurance agent, and they must also like you back! Otherwise, you will dread working with them, and they will probably feel the same about you.
I know when I leave 95% of my clients, I feel energized and happy from our meeting. Consequently, I know they do too. I am always working to get this number to 100%. I purposefully search out clients I can be myself with. When I am my authentic self, I know I can do my best work for my clients.
In summary, there is a good agent out there for everyone. However, it might take a few attempts to find the one that is right for you. Just be on the look out for agents that are: educators, learners, listeners, and problem solvers. In addition, they should be trustworthy and authentic, but above all, you should like them!