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Recruiting is a Contact Sport
by Michael Beck
Copyright 2006 Exceptional Leadership, Inc.
There are many ways to go about finding prospective agents. Some of them are active methods, while others are passive. Active recruiting methods are things like Personal Observation, Personal Prospecting, Public Speaking, Agent Referrals, Networking, and Centers of Influence, while passive methods include internet recruiting, newspaper advertising and direct mail campaigns.
Passive and active recruiting will both produce results, however they differ in efficiency and effectiveness – and understanding those differences will make all the difference to you and your results. Passive methods are easy to implement, but they attract 1) “tire kickers”, 2) people looking for a job, and 3) people simply looking for a way to make money. Please understand, these methods do produce results and can uncover fantastic people who become great agents, but generally the quality of results is poor. When these methods are implemented, plenty of activity is generated, but few prospects become agents and fewer still go on to do well.
Active methods, on the other hand, take more time on the front end, but because they are so much more effective, end up being much more efficient. They are so much more effective because interviews are only generated with people who have an interest in working with you and also share your purpose. They’re often coming on board because they identify with you and what you stand for, they see it as a good opportunity to build a future, and they see the opportunity as one which offers unlimited financial growth. Not only are active methods more effective, but agents who are recruited through active methods historically are better producers.
Why Active Recruiting is More Effective
• A key to a successful recruiting program is to effectively identify candidates with an “owner” mindset. Candidates with an owner mindset are better at taking initiative while candidates with an employee mindset are better at taking instruction. Candidates with an owner mindset are self-starters who recognize the correlation between their success and the amount of effort they put forth — in fact, they thrive on it. They take initiative, they think independently and they tend to succeed when they’re given the freedom to do things their own way. These are the kind of candidates that make up the foundation of any winning sales force. Active recruiting allows you to better identify candidates right from the start who are inclined to be owners rather than employees.
• People who respond to recruitment advertising are generally looking for something better than what they have. Either they’re unhappy with their current situation or they have no job at all. Now… think about whether you’d rather have a prospective agent who is happy and productive where they are or someone who is unhappy and maybe even unproductive where they are? Most territory builders would always prefer a candidate who is already productive and happy. They want someone who has a positive attitude and good work habits. By seeking out candidates who are closer to your ideal with respect to productivity, attitude and drive, you end up with agents who are productive, positive and successful
• Ever get frustrated with the production of your agents and wonder how to motivate them? This is a prevalent challenge within the industry. The cause for this issue comes from how the agents were recruited. Not only are many agents recruited through passive efforts, but, often the manager doesn’t communicate what they’re passionate about. Without a worthwhile purpose, it’s pretty difficult to attract and keep the right kind of people – people who are happy, energetic and highly productive. In case you doubt the validity of this observation about the power of personal attraction, look over your agents and see who the highest producers are and/or the ones who are most responsive. Typically they’re the agents you personally recruited rather than the agents you “inherited”. When you actively recruit, you create the opportunity to let a candidate see what you’re about - what matters to you. You end up attracting like-minded people.
Active recruiting allows you to attract the kind of people you want on your team, allows you to interview only those people who are likely to succeed, and allows you to build a team of loyal, professional, hard-working, responsive and successful agents.
Break out of the internet/advertising routine and start powering up your recruiting and your success!
About the Author
Written by Michael Beck, “The Insurance Coach”. Michael, an Executive Coach and Recruiting Activist, helps insurance professionals succeed faster and easier. He can be reached at 866-385-8751 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit his websites to learn more: http://www.InsuranceAgentRecruiting.com
Permission to reprint with full attribution.
© 2006 Exceptional Leadership, Inc.
Tags: Start and Run a Business