Sales workforce is custodian of brand, need proper training
18 September 2019
They say, “Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman, not the attitude of the prospect.” This statement is a true reflection of sales in the life insurance sector.
While life insurance forms a crucial component of one’s financial portfolio, it continues to be a push-product in India. Meaning, advisers have to educate and then convince an individual into buying a life insurance, as opposed to other financial instruments like FDs, which are common in an Indian household.
According to latest available data, the life insurance sector’s penetration is at 3.7% (calculated as first new year business premium to GDP), showing the massive potential of the Indian market. In such an underpenetrated market and an advisory-driven industry, the need and availability of the right talent is paramount.
A sales workforce plays a very important role for any company. Besides bringing in a steady stream of revenue, a salesperson is your direct point of contact with the customers and is a custodian of the brand. He determines the customer’s experience with the company and is responsible for creating trust and loyalty for the company.
The organisation plays a huge role in determining how that salesperson treats the customer. While life insurance sales can still be imagined in the traditional sense, there are several peripheral factors that have now changed. With the advent of the digital age, the customers have become smarter and far more aware than in the olden days. This has pushed accountability to a greater degree — for both the company and salespersons.
With the evolving customer behaviour and ecosystem, there is now a higher onus upon companies to groom and train their sales workforce in the right practices. In the life insurance sector, an organisation plays a crucial role in ensuring that the noble purpose of the vocation is deeply entrenched in its sales workforce — the purpose that you enable customers to protect their dreams and aspirations. A company must recognise that it is not just about the ‘monthly targets’ but it is also about acquiring and retaining quality business.
It is necessary that every organisation provides the requisite training to its sales force to be able to provide the right advice to its customers. It also must equip them with the right, quick and easy tools to help customers determine their financial needs on their own before they make any financial purchase.
Life insurance as a career option
‘I am a 37-year-old widow with two school-going children — my husband left us a year ago. With the claim settlement of my husband’s policy, I have been able to rebuild our life economically. It has helped me run the household without any interruption, which has brought a sense of stability in the family.’
That right there, in a nutshell, is what life insurance is — a rewarding career choice, both financially and personally. While the life insurance sector lacks glamour and is often perceived as a lastresort profession, it offers the much-needed stability and earning potential to fulfil your dreams. It also provides a fulfilling sense of purpose, which is helping people protect their loved ones and secure them from a future uncertainty.
While it is a source of a regular income, it can also help achieve your entrepreneurial dreams. Some insurers in the industry currently offer several incentive-based programmes that provide adequate business as well as management training that can help you grow at a fast pace within the company. Additionally, these provide a separate office set-up, allowing you to work as an individual business unit.
Furthermore, if you are working as a personal finance adviser, known commonly as an agent, you have the opportunity to qualify as a member of the global elite Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT). This is an elite trade association, consisting of the top 1% of global insurance professionals.
But most important of all, a career in insurance shifts and moulds your approach to become more inclusive, rather than exclusive. The entire basis of working in this sector is to create opportunities for people to protect their loved ones and bring them under the security of insurance. With numerous benefits and opportunities for growth at every step of your career, a job in the insurance sector is every bit fulfilling and exciting. If you’re within the insurance spectrum or plan to jump into the domain, now is the time to take action.