Bridging the Gap: How to Foster Great Relationships Between Insurance Vets and New Agents
Posted by: Cornelia Winn
It’s no surprise that the insurance agency has never been known for attracting millennials. In fact, the average insurance agent is 59 years old. But in the next three years, the insurance industry is expected to change dramatically as nearly 25 percent of insurance agents are projected to retire.
This is an interesting time for the insurance agency, as it creates both the challenge of getting new, young talent in the door and the challenge of preparing for when this happens. If you head a team of insurance agents, one of the best things you can do to prepare for this shift is understand how to help build positive relationships between your employees, young and new. Not sure where to start? Read on to learn four ways you can help foster great relationships between insurance vets and new agents.
Celebrate a New Employee’s First Day
Starting a new job can be intimidating for anyone — especially if you’re just beginning your career and are working alongside seasoned insurance vets. Fortunately, if you lead a team of agents, there are lots of ways you can help new employees feel confident in their new position and assimilate with their new colleagues. For example, try catering lunch on an employee’s first day and have everyone introduce themselves, their position and a unique fact about themselves. This will help ensure everyone is introduced to one another and is a fun icebreaker for all.
New agents just starting out in the industry often find it difficult to have their voice heard. That’s why restructuring meetings so that both veteran agents and new agents can voice their opinions is a great way to bridge the gap between the two groups. Try having some meetings be run by tenured professionals, and some by millennials. While it may take some time for employees to get used to the new structure, this method will ultimately provide an opportunity for all agents to gain respect for one another and even help inspire each other too.
Develop a Mentorship Program
Developing a mentorship program for your insurance agency touts serious benefits. Not only is a mentorship program an easy way to create bonds in the workplace, but it is essentially an inexpensive educational tool that can increase employee satisfaction and retention in the process. We recommend having insurance vets who have been in the industry for years pair up with a newer agent. How you want the program to be structured is completely up to you, but holding weekly one-on-one meetings and encouraging new agents to shadow their mentors is a promising place to start.
Create Networking Opportunities
Whether you rally your team for an after-work happy hour or attend a national event held by industry leaders, scheduling networking events for your team to attend can boost camaraderie and improve employee satisfaction. Better yet, networking events can help get the entire team involved in hearing from and speaking with some of the biggest thought leaders in the industry.