Are you a young person trying to figure out what you want to do with the rest of your life? Are you a downsized employee looking to change careers? In both cases, insurance sales are an option. Human beings will always need insurance policies. Therefore, there will always be work opportunities for brokers and agents.
The most recent BLS data suggest there are more than 325,000 insurance professionals in the U.S. Some work directly for insurance companies, others own brokerages. Still, others work as agents underneath those brokerages, either as direct employees or independent contractors. Suffice it to say there are lots of opportunities for any aspiring insurance sales professional.
1. Different Product Lines
In addition to different types of jobs, sales professionals have lots of options in terms of product lines. When most of us think of insurance, we think of auto and homeowner policies. Health insurance is another big one. But brokers and agents can sell everything from long-term disability insurance to umbrella policies.
A sales professional’s product line often influences how they work. If you want to specialize in auto insurance, for example, your best bet for employment would be working for a local brokerage or starting your own agency. If you are more interested in health insurance and other employer benefits, you can join up with a brokerage or work independently through a general agency like BenefitMall.
2. Different Customer Bases
With different product lines come different customer bases. Consumer product lines are those products sold directly to consumers. We are talking about auto, homeowner’s, life, and umbrella insurance. Your customer base would be your friends and neighbors. They would be all the individual consumers who live in your town.
Health insurance brokers deal less with consumers and more with employers. That is because most health insurance policies are sold to employers as group benefits. So instead of contacting the people in your neighborhood, you are making contact with local businesses. You are dealing with company owners and HR departments.
3. Different Carrier Options
Insurance companies are known in the sales business as carriers. By now, you probably expect that there are different carriers for each different product line. That’s spot on. Just think about your own insurance needs. Chances are that your car insurance company does not offer health insurance. Likewise, the company that handles your life insurance policy probably doesn’t cover your medical care.
Insurance agents have options in terms of who they represent. An agent can represent one carrier exclusively. They can work for a brokerage that represents half-of-dozen carriers. Finally, they can be completely independent and sell products from any carrier they want.
4. Different Working Hours
The options continue for insurance sales professionals. For example, there are different working hours related to each product line. Benefits brokers typically keep a 9-to-5 business schedule because that is when they have access to company owners and HR departments.
Agents who specialize in homeowners and auto insurance tend to keep a 9-to-5 schedule as well. However, they sometimes work evenings and on weekends, too. As for life insurance agents, they tend to be more active in the late afternoon and evening hours. Those are the hours most suited to meeting with potential clients.
If you are looking for a sales-oriented career that offers more options than you can deal with, consider insurance. There is something for everyone. Best of all, insurance is a product that is never going to go out of style. As long as human beings roam the Earth, they will be looking for all sorts of insurance policies. You can count on it.