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Important Characteristics of an Insurance Agent

Comparing and deciding on insurance plans can be a challenge, especially if you’re not sure how insurance works. That’s where insurance agents come in. We are here to help guide you into making a decision that’s best for you. When seeking out an insurance agent, you want to notice their characteristics, for this will tell you a lot about the way they work with and for you.

Here are some important characteristics for an insurance agent to have:

1. Your insurance agent must have good people skills. The insurance agent should find it important to put the needs of the client first. We are here for you, the client. The most important aspect of our responsibility is to do what is in the best interest for you, the client.

2. Your insurance agent must have good customer service. You never know when a question is going to come up related to insurance and/or your coverage. You want your agent to be available to answer your questions.

3. Emotional intelligence is important in any relationship, including client to agent relationships. You come to an agent with specific needs and wants. We should listen to those needs and wants. We should also be able to empathize with our clients. If we are not able to understand how you feel, it will be hard to solve your problems (at least with what we can do with health insurance).

4. It is also important to have an agent with high level energy. If your agent is not excited and eager to share what they can do for you, there’s not enough passion. We are here to help. We should love what we do. (The tricky part with this is not all agents have the visible energy levels, but still have the passion).

5. As important as wanting to help is, it is also important to know to keep moving. We can’t help everyone. Some people don’t want help. Some don’t need the help. It’s okay. We need to be persistent and keep moving forward. We can help the next person.

6. Again, something important in all relationships is honesty. Of course, this would be a professional relationship, so the agent still needs to keep that in mind. You want an agent to be honest. All agents should be honest, but unfortunately not all are. You want us to be honest about coverage, cost, network, and everything else related to health insurance plans. You don’t want to be surprised and disappointed.

7. There are two types of health insurance agents: captive and non-captive. If they are captive, they can only have a contract with one carrier. Non-captive agents are also known as brokers. Brokers have options. We have a large array of products and services. The variety gives us more options to help clients. Not only the number of carriers, but the services: private plans, marketplace plans, Medicare Advantage plans, Medigap plans, dental, vision, and so on.

8. Technically, insurance agents are in sales, but a sale is not the goal. You want an agent whose goal is to educate. We would rather you walk away with a new piece of knowledge. We want to help you. That is the goal. Product knowledge is important: your agent should be able to explain processes, terms, differences, similarities, and other factors. Again, knowledge is key.

This is not the end. I could go on and on. There are so many more characteristics that are important. We have a fiduciary responsibility to be ethical. Integrity, friendliness, professionalism, and so much more may be expected but are not always included. You may have your own personal preferences and ideas for important characteristics as well. Don’t lose sight of that either. No one is perfect. That’s okay. As long as what truly matters is there, you can’t go wrong.

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