AGENCY

Insurance - - CONTENTS -

The Bot­tom Line Max­imis­ing pro­duc­tiv­ity has al­ways been a con­cern to agency lead­ers. Richard W. Sawyer shares dif­fer­ences in re­sults of two sur­veys car­ried out in the early 1990s cov­er­ing con­cerns such as the need for im­prove­ment of the bot­tom line of pro­duc­ers; they were quan­tity of time, qual­ity of ac­tiv­ity and pro­duc­tive use of time; staffing is­sues, del­e­ga­tion of work, and ef­fec­tive­ness ver­sus ef­fi­ciency, amongst oth­ers.

Along-stand­ing con­cern of MDRT mem­bers has been how to max­imise pro­duc­tiv­ity. Ad­mit­tedly, “pro­duc­tiv­ity” is a loaded term with many dif­fer­ent el­e­ments fac­tor­ing into what makes one mem­ber more pro­duc­tive than an­other. These is­sues are var­ied and not al­ways eas­ily ex­plained. Is it the amount of staff a pro­ducer has, or how much a mem­ber del­e­gates that de­ter­mines his or her level of suc­cess? Is it just a gen­eral de­sire to work harder and longer? Or is it some­thing else en­tirely? The re­cently com­pleted Bot­tom Line Sur­vey takes great strides to­ward an­swer­ing these ques­tions.

His­tory

The first Bot­tom Line Sur­vey was con­ducted in 1990 at the re­quest of the late David H. Hil­ton, CLU, ChFC, the 1990 MDRT pres­i­dent and 42-year mem­ber from Win­netka, IL, who made it one of his pri­or­i­ties to im­prove the pro­duc­tiv­ity of MDRT mem­bers. The first Bot­tom Line Com­mit­tee iden­ti­fied three pri­mary fac­tors needed to im­prove the bot­tom line for pro­duc­ers: quan­tity of time, qual­ity of ac­tiv­ity and pro­duc­tive use of time. The fol­low­ing year, the next Bot­tom Line Com­mit­tee fo­cused on how these fac­tors re­lated, us­ing the re­sults of a mem­ber sur­vey with find­ings that were pro­vided in the 1992 “MDRT Pro­duc­tiv­ity Guide.” The con­clu­sions were as fol­lows:

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5. Mem­bers tended to stay within their com­fort zones to in­crease po­ten­tial sales con­tacts. Mem­bers con­trolled most as­pects of their busi­nesses and were un­will­ing to del­e­gate non-sales ac­tiv­i­ties to gain more sell­ing time. Mem­bers were not suc­cess­ful in net­work­ing with other pro­fes­sion­als. Mem­bers were un­der-utilised and not en­gaged in re­ally fo­cus­ing on their busi­nesses. Court of the Ta­ble and Top of the Ta­ble mem­bers clearly demon­strated in­creased suc­cess due to im­proved use of staff and net­work­ing, as well as more will­ing­ness to take a chance to get out of their com­fort zones.

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