The independent insurance agent.

April 9, 2011 § Leave a comment

So here we are, deep into this era of managed competition. What used to be an old boy network, unquestioned, vanilla flavored industry, when a renewal was a matter of course has exploded into a potpourri of choice, competitive rates and salesmanship. No longer is a phone call and a reassuring “I’ll take care of it,” the order of the day or enough to satisfy anyone. The insurance landscaped has changed and morphed itself into a caveman, a gecko, a waitress, Mr. Mayhem, and agents that appear out of thin air. Not even to mention things like “accident forgiveness,” “name your own price,” and savings from up to $350! And now all I have to do is go online, type in a few answers and presto, I’m insured. Maybe that’s okay if I live in a part of the country with cornfields on either side that goes on as far as the eye can see and the center of town has a church, police and fire station, a diner, gas station (who pumps it for you) and a town hall. Maybe it works out there, wherever “there” is. But round these parts, it’s not so simple. We, the public have been hypnotized, entertained and lured into believing these simplified truths in the hopes of saving money. There’s only one problem, it’s called “Insurance” for a reason. To insure against an unfortunate event. To protect oneself and ones’ family. To honor a code of ethics, to be responsible to be fair and to do the “right thing,” just in case. I know, times are tough, real tough. The economic climate has affected more Americans than that of the depression era. Not as hard, not as fast, but deep, protracted and all encompassing. Of course we’re all looking to save a few bucks and “get by.” Should we take a risk? Should we leave our families and our livelihoods in jeopardy? Just to save a few bucks. Chances are we won’t need insurance, we won’t get into an accident or have a loss. But what happens when we do? Is that 800 # working for you? Will Mr. Mayhem show up? Will the ever present reappearing agent? What happens when the red lights of a police car, the motor of the hydraulic lift, the emotional pain of an unfortunate accident, the fear, the shock of it all, what happens then? Who do you call? Whats next? It is the professionals who represent sound insurance carriers, the experts who understand the “ins and outs” of the insurance business and know how to cover you in the event of a loss. It is their expert opinion who understands the legal jargon and the 8 point type that I can’t read nor do I want to, who can tell me, this is what you need and you have nothing to worry about. That’s what they do, that’s what they’ve been doing for decades. And they have earned our trust. Because they know. Because they are the professionals. The are not salespeople. They are your trusted adviser. Do not make the mistake of believing the “agent” representing insurance companies is what your independent agent is.

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