5 Characteristics of Successful Insurance Agents

What Distinguishes Top-Performing Insurance Agents from Those Who Can't Achieve It?

Designations, technical knowledge, systems, and processes are important. However, there are several key characteristics I see in the most successful insurance agents. Here they are:


1.They Are Disciplined

Discipline is the difference between failure and success. Most people don’t fail because they don’t know how to do something. After all, professional skills can be learned. Marketing ideas can be learned. Prospecting techniques can be learned.

People fail because they are not willing to do what is necessary to succeed. Successful insurance agents are those who are disciplined enough to take action, even when they don’t want to. They focus their time and energy on what needs to be done, without procrastination. Self-discipline is the art of delaying short-term pleasure for long-term gains.


2.They Genuinely Care

You can’t fake caring.

A universal truth in sales is that people buy from people they like. The big secret is that if you truly care about people, it’s hard for them not to like you. All else being equal, the person who exudes the most trust and credibility will win the business.

A successful career is built around clients who know you care about them and realize that their gain is your top priority, not your own. Caring is the genuine desire to understand other people and create positive outcomes for them.

But desire isn’t enough. You must show people you care by repeatedly doing things that benefit your clients and prospects. This means you will care after the sale is made too.


3.They Take Initiative

You won’t succeed by waiting. You have to take the initiative.

Your dream clients won’t magically call your phone or email you asking for help... at least not most of the time, even with an inbound marketing machine.

Initiative is only hard at first: once you start, momentum is on your side. Newton’s first law of motion states that an object at rest tends to stay at rest, and an object in motion stays in motion, unless acted upon by an external force. Your prospects are at rest and will continue doing what they’re doing (not doing business with you) unless you become the external force acting upon them.

If you don’t take the initiative, someone else will, and they’ll steal your market share.


4.They Are Optimistic

Deep down, I always thought positive thinking books and videos were a bit cheesy. What difference does positive thinking make?

A huge difference!

I placed this characteristic right after "they take initiative" because they go well together. If you are a negative thinker, your pessimism will kill your initiative. After all, if your prospect has already said no twice, what’s the point of calling again? The pessimistic thinker will assume, once again, that they will be rejected.

Pessimism is the thief of dreams. It seduces you to make excuses, rationalize your decisions, and exempt you from any responsibility. It protects and shields your ego but at the cost of success.

Optimism will push you towards success. If you are optimistic, you believe things will work out for the best, and if you believe this, it’s much easier to take the necessary actions to gain more clients and build your book of business.


5.They Are Persistent

Optimism gives you the power to persist: see how these traits combine?

My favorite book of all time is "Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill, and the chapter on persistence is my favorite chapter. However, I never took the time to understand what persistence really means.

What comes to mind when you see the word “persistent”? If you’re like me, you think it means taking action over long periods of time.

Here’s the definition: “persistence is the firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition.”

That means there WILL be difficulties or opposition! You can’t be persistent without it. Persistence is NOT taking the same mediocre actions every day. By definition, there HAS to be some kind of difficulty, so when I say that the best insurance agents are persistent, I don’t mean they prospect every day (though that should be done). I mean they encounter difficulties or opposition and continue on their course of action anyway.


Thank you very much for taking the time to read this post! If you know someone who could use this, please share it!

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