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How to Motivate Your Producers

How to Motivate Your ProducersGetting your producers to perform at their best can often be a challenging task. Many agencies invest huge amounts of time and money in order to motivate their employees and improve morale.

Though it may be a challenging endeavor, motivating your producers to perform their best day after day is very rewarding to the business as a whole. Steven Balzac, president of the organizational development firm 7 Steps Ahead, states, “You can’t threaten or compel people to perform at a high level; top level performance comes only from a highly motivated work force.”

Here are some effective ways to motivate your producers.

Create a Positive Work Environment

A negative working environment is one of the major factors behind poor productivity. Employee happiness is directly linked to motivation according to the National Institute of Health. Creating a positive work environment can have a tremendous effect on producer motivation. Here are some suggestions to creating a positive work environment:

  • Look in the mirror and ask yourself, “What kind of leader am I?” or better “Would I follow me?”
  • Create a productive and constructive work environment through positive reinforcement. It is important to maintain focus and stay upbeat even when things are challenging.
  • Build producer confidence by establishing routines, setting realistic/challenging goals, and remind producers of past successes instead of failures.

Be Generous and Share the Company’s Success

The sense of contributing to the overall goals and success of a company can be a tremendous motivator for producers. After all, no one wants to feel as if the work they do does not matter to the success of the whole. By enabling producers to share in the success of business success, you ultimately enhance productivity. Some examples are:

  • Profit Sharing
  • Company Stock Options
  • Weekly meetings to discuss company goals and successes with employee recognition for a job well done.

Set Goals and Reward Success

Goals set should be attainable and applicable to the success of the employee and the business as a whole. Provide detailed information to producers how these goals fit into the overall business strategy and both company/ employee success. It is also imperative that the goals provided to a producer are relevant to their current work responsibilities.

While rewards are an important outcome to goals achieved, it is important that they not be the main motivator for employee performance. Rewards do not need to be monetary; instead, try using feedback or appreciation for continued hard work.

As owners/operators of a “small business”, we at SIS understand how challenging it can be to motivate employees. Through our collective wisdom we have learned that one of the best motivational tools out there is to always look for reasons to celebrate success, no matter how small. This provides everyone with an opportunity to stop and appreciate the fruits of their labor. Aside from providing a solid software to help agencies run better, we aim to provide assistance in key business initiatives such as those described in this blog.

For more information, please feel free to contact us at 800-747-9273 or [email protected].

Getting Started with Google+

Google Plus for Insurance AgenciesStaying ahead in a wired world is not as challenging as you think. Setting up a Google+ business account is simple to do and a lot of fun as well! If you are interested in getting started today, click here. Google+ will walk you through the steps necessary to set up your account. You are also given access to tutorials on how to use the various features. Some helpful hints to remember are:

  1. If you do not have a Google account, you will need to set one up before you get started with Google+. You can sign up for a Google account by clicking here.
  2. Set up your Google profile, which includes a bio, contact information, and links where other companies or individuals have mentioned you. Make sure to review the visibility settings and set them according to preference.
  3. Once both steps 1 and 2 are complete, you’re ready to set up your Google+ account. Remember that Google states that Google+ is “the new way to communicate across the Google network.” Have some graphics and a few blog topics ready to post if you want to start your Google+ account off with a bang!

Below are a few examples of Google+ business accounts from the insurance industry. We hope to see you on Google+ soon!

This post is part of a series on Insurance Marketing Strategies brought to you by SIS.  At SIS we view it as our job to make all the behind the scenes tasks that go into running an independent insurance agency simpler, so you can focus on growing your book of business.

We do this by doing what we do best – listening to our clients’ needs, constantly working to build a better agency management system, providing outstanding ongoing customer support and looking for the next “best way” we can help you out.   

If you are interested in learning more about SIS or our Partner XE agency management system please give us a call at 800-747-9273 or fill out a short contact form and one of our representatives will be in touch soon.

Another Reason to Embrace Google+

Google Plus for Insurance AgenciesRecently, Steve Anderson wrote a follow-up to Stop Whining: Embrace Google+ titled Another Reason to Embrace Google+ . In this article, Anderson points out that most insurance agencies are local businesses, and local businesses need to advertise locally; hence the need for local listings. “As a local business, you want to be found and do business with people who live and work within a small radius of your physical office location.”

Anderson states that 43 percent of search queries with Google are local and 74 percent of these local searches are done using mobile devices such as cellular phones and tablets. Now that Google+ has replaced the old “Places” in their search engine with “Google+ Local”, businesses should merge their Google+ Local listing with the agency Google+ Business page.

In his article, Anderson also mentions some additional benefits to creating a presence on Google+. The benefits mentioned include:

  1. Improved Search Results
  2. Expanded Visuals
  3. Direct Interaction with Customers
  4. Assigning Multiple People to your Google+ Local Page
  5. Multiple Pages for Multiple Locations
  6. Friend Recommendations

Summing up the article, Anderson suggests your next steps to creating a Google+ account or how to optimize your Google+ Business page if one has already been created. He reminds readers that if they already have a “Google Places” listing, they already have a “Google+ Local” page as well. Linking the Google+ Local page with a Google+ Business page is the next step in establishing a strong internet presence.

This post is part of a series on Insurance Marketing Strategies brought to you by SIS.  At SIS we view it as our job to make all the behind the scenes tasks that go into running an independent insurance agency simpler, so you can focus on growing your book of business.

We do this by doing what we do best – listening to our clients’ needs, constantly working to build a better agency management system, providing outstanding ongoing customer support and looking for the next “best way” we can help you out.   

If you are interested in learning more about SIS or our Partner XE agency management system please give us a call at 800-747-9273 or fill out a short contact form and one of our representatives will be in touch soon.

SIS Adds RPost for Messaging Compliance

August 28, 2013 – Columbus, OH and Los Angeles, CA – Strategic Insurance Software, providers of Partner XE, a leading agency management system for independent agents, today announced their release of the Partner XE Outlook Plug-in version 2.0.  The plug-in includes a seamless integration with RPost – a market leader for Registered Email® delivery proof, email encryption, and e-signatures.

The integration of the two products allows agencies using Partner XE & RPost to speed application and contract execution, increase data privacy and security, and track proof of all communications in their secure, SaaS based agency management system.

“By adding RPost email encryption, e-signatures, and email delivery proof to SIS’s insurance management platform via the RPost Registered Email® service extension, SIS has demonstrated its commitment to providing the insurance sector with leading-edge agency automation,” said RPost CEO, Zafar Khan.

“Heightened enforcement of privacy laws has spurred a need for many insurance companies to change how they communicate electronically, and we are pleased to provide SIS’ Partner XE users with an easy, integrated, and privacy compliant way of doing so.”

The SIS team is also enthusiastic about the partnership and the opportunities it will provide its clients.

“Our partnership with RPost aligns well with our market vision of allowing agencies to leverage Partner XE as the hub for their agency operations, while integrating with other best of breed technologies,” said SIS CEO, Alex Deak.

“The enhancements we’ve recently made to our Outlook Plug-in make it a best in class solution for Outlook integration.  Adding RPost’s functionality to that gives our agencies the chance to streamline their operations, offer their clients safety and security with their email communication, and track compliance for E&O purposes.”

“RPost is an easy to use product at a great price point,” added Paul Fuller, EVP of Product Management. “The integration with Partner XE was smooth, and our team is ready to bring this integration to our current and future clients.”

New Partnership with SEMCAT

Strategic Insurance Software (SIS) today announced its partnership with comparative quoting provider SEMCAT Corporation. SIS is the maker of Partner XE, a leading agency management system for independent agents. Because of the partnership between SIS and SEMCAT, Partner XE users will benefit from access to integrated rating and agency management capabilities.

This new integration allows agencies to rapidly provide accurate automobile insurance quotes based on information contained in Partner XE. This integration will save agencies time and money in their quoting process.

Paul Fuller, EVP of Product Management for SIS, is excited about the new capabilities SIS can now offer to Partner XE users: “Our partnership with SEMCAT aligns well with our market vision of allowing agencies to leverage Partner XE as the hub for their agency operations, while integrating with other best of breed technologies to support critical agency tasks. This relationship offers our mutual agencies an all-star pairing to meet their agency management and rating needs.”

Bill Schneider, SEMCAT’s EVP for Carrier Partnerships, said, “Our integration with Partner XE offers independent insurance agencies using Partner XE seamless operation with the nation’s only 100% accurate comparative quoting solution. This direct integration will eliminate tedious and time-consuming data entry and allow our mutual customers to affordably serve their clients with speed and accuracy.”

This integration will be available with the release of Partner XE 2.0 in September.

SEMCAT is a quoting solution company based in Lincoln, Nebraska that is focused on bringing efficiencies to the insurance marketplace. Since 2007, SEMCAT’s primary goal has been to assist the independent agencies. It helps independent agents quote with accuracy and serve with speed. For more information about SEMCAT’s Comparative Rater, visit http://www.SEMCAT.net or call the company at 1.402.218.1495.

Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, Strategic Insurance Software (SIS) is the team behind Partner XE–an innovative web-based insurance agency management system that helps independent agencies streamline workflow and grow their business. Built on a foundation of strong technology and exceptional service, we’re moving forward with a constant eye on innovation that will make independent agents’ lives easier.