My Most Important Takeaways from 2023 by Agent Kim Benton

2024-02-09T17:08:03-05:00February 9th, 2024|Coaching & Team, Efficiency, Mindset|
With Kim Benton, Agent & Insurance Agency Optimization Coach 
Length: 6:16

In this episode, Agent Kim Benton shares her top three takeaways as an insurance agent from the year 2023. Her insurance insights underscore the importance of reflection, adaptability, and technological readiness for success in the insurance industry.


My 3 Most Important Takeaways from 2023


My 3 Biggest Takeaways from 2023

Hi everyone, it’s Agent Kim Benton and I’m here today to share with you my top 3 takeaways from the year that was 2023.

While 2023 was filled with its challenges, it also brought great prosperity for many.  Whether it was your best year ever or you’re ready to move on and forget it ever happened, I think it’s important to take some time to pause and reflect, and think about what learnings you can take away.  So, let’s dive in to the three things that stand out most to me about my 2023.

My first takeaway centers around the importance of gratitude when market conditions are favorable. As an insurance agent, it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day hustle, but when the market is thriving, take a moment to be thankful. Maybe take more than a moment honestly. It’s so easy to get bogged down in all of the negativity that can come with rate increases, claim challenges, team turnover, you name it.  So, when things are going well, allow yourself to celebrate the blessing that you have been given.

Now, Once you’ve done that, I want you to make darn sure that you are taking full advantage of the opportunity that’s being presented.  Our 2023 took off like gangbusters.  Our rates were beyond competitive and we were bringing in business at a higher rate than ever before… Then, the issue of profitability arose and we saw a shut down in online auto quoting and a HUGE shift in eligibility for new business.  If you could see the chart that maps out our auto and fire production, you would see it sharply taper off around June and July.

Thankfully, we had done a great job of starting the year strong and were still able to hit our gain targets by year end.  I had a fully staffed agency that was trained and ready to go.  How important is that? To be working ahead instead of from behind.  Had we not been in a position to really push forward at the beginning of the year, I know it would have ended much differently.  (And honestly, there’s a part of me that of course wishes we had been able to do even more early on!)

That leads me right into my second takeaway—and that is that you need to be incredibly nimble in order to truly thrive in our business.  Think about the situation that I just described to you.  Thankfully I’m in a position that we don’t rely on internet leads for new business, but I have been very active with paid search—and now the option for my ad to drive someone to my website for a quote is off the table.  Not only did we have to shift our marketing strategy, but I also had to keep my team’s morale up in the face of these changes and shift their focus to another way to find success.

How did we do that?  Sorry folks, but I’m going to circle back to my love of the 12 week year.  Because we break our year up into 4 12 week periods, it’s SO much easier for me to pivot and send my team down another pathway if the market conditions warrant it.  It’s not even a big deal for their mindset b/c they are USED TO the change.  So, for our 3rd 12 week year, we shifted away from P&C goals and focused on our life, health & bank conversations.  It created a way for the team to win, and for us to readjust ourselves to the market we found ourselves in.  If you aren’t currently using the 12 week year for your planning and goals, I can’t recommend it highly enough.

My third and final takeaway revolves around the rapid evolution of technology. In 2023, we witnessed remarkable advancements, and we as agents need to be prepared to keep up. Staying technologically savvy is no longer an option but a necessity.

Technology is transforming the way we operate. From streamlined processes to enhanced customer experiences, embracing evolving technologies is a must. As agents, we need to stay informed, adopt new tools, and integrate tech-driven solutions into our daily operations. It’s not just about keeping pace; it’s about leveraging technology to stay ahead of the curve.  How can you utilize technology to be more efficient?  Can your team implement a tool that will save them time and allow them to reach more people? Can AI tools help you with creating content? Whether that’s for social media or even for training your team? All important questions that we need to be asking.

In that same vein, we need to be prepared to hold customers hands through some of the transitions that are required with new technologies.  My agency is in a pretty rural area with two thirds of my book being over the age of 50.  Talk about resistant to change?? Yea, that’s our world here.  It is our job in the agency to help educate customers about technological advances within our company and help walk them through getting adjusted to new ways of doing business—hopefully even showing them the advantages to utilizing some of these options! Whether that’s as simple as paperless billing or as complicated as artificial intelligence or the use of drones in our claim handling or reinspections, we have to be that positive voice advocating for these important updates!

As I wrap things up today, my biggest takeaways from 2023 can be summarized this way:

Be thankful in good times but be prepared to take full advantage.

Embrace the power of the 12-Week Year for agility

And always stay technologically prepared.

In the dynamic world of insurance, these insights will help propel you forward to incredible success.

No matter what your year may have looked like, I challenge you to pause and take the time to reflect. What went well? What didn’t?  What things were inside your control? How can you make adjustments in order to move forward in a more positive or productive way?

Spending time analyzing the recent past in order to plan for a better future is always time well spent.

Is your agency optimized?

Are you consistently:

  • Connecting with key community influencers
  • Posting on social media
  • Having team meetings
  • Holding your team accountable
  • Staying on top of industry updates

You know what to do; you just need a hand. That’s where we come in.

> Schedule a demo now!

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