An Insurance Agent’s Guide to Deadlines
The word “deadline” gets thrown around a lot in newsrooms, but it’s just as important to the enterprising insurance agent.
While the word has an inherent pressure, it also forces one out of his comfort zone and gets him to start thinking in terms of action instead of theory.
Here’s what makes the deadline so important to the career of an insurance agent.
Deadlines generate activity
Working as an insurance agent gives you a great deal more freedom with how you spend your time compared to someone, who punches a time clock every day.
Unfortunately, that “freedom” is not without its down side. If you are not the type of person to self-motivate, then you could be wasting your time and losing money due to procrastination.
The simple act of setting a deadline gets you thinking about end results, and the only way to get from point A to point B is to start taking action right away.
Activity generates results
When you get active, you start thinking less in terms of theory and more in terms of the individual components that drive your business forward. This leads to results.
Now it’s important to state here that not every result you experience will have an immediate positive effect. Some of the results that you encounter might be considered failures. Others, break-evens. Others, successes.
When you take the sum total, however, you have data that you can build on. Without setting the initial deadline, you’ll never make it to that point where you start seeing outcomes.
Results lead to goals
Positive, negative, or neutral — each result leads you to a new road map for how to do business. You’re going to take some meetings that just don’t work out. You’re also going to have some unexpected successes.
There will be insurance leads ready to buy, others who drag their feet, and still others who fall off the face of the earth.
As long as you’re learning something from each outcome, you’re putting your business in the place where it needs to be to turn successful.
Goals produce growth
Once you start seeing the fruits (or the failures) of your initial deadlines, you’ll be able to create goals that drive the business forward.
Goals are different from activities because goals tell the overarching story of where you’re going. Putting it in screenplay or stage play terms, goals are your “act three.”
They give you a resolution to work toward, but they are not something you do. They are the product of what you do. And when it comes to sales, your “product” should always be growth.
Growth creates success
Deadlines help get you get to growth, which leads to success. There is no staying in place — not in the insurance industry. If you’re not learning, if you’re not building, if you’re not retaining, then it’s very hard to succeed.
Think about it like this. Running in place will not win you the race; lifting the same weight as a senior that you did as a seventh grader won’t make your kid a football star; getting straight A’s as a freshman in college won’t prepare you for a Ph.D.
Stagnation is falling behind, and without deadlines, it’s easy to stagnate.
Deadlines are great for keeping your focus as you deal with the difficulty that too much freedom and independence can create.
Especially if you’re just starting out and have never had a job that provided you with so much autonomy, you’re going to need a way to structure the days and get things done.
Holding your own feet to the fire is the first step.