5 Tool Players Have Technical Knowledge

If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you know that I believe you have to be a hybrid to succeed in the sales game. Reading blogs like this and listening to podcasts will help you with your sales technique, but you got to get in school to get that technical knowledge up. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today. Number one in our five-part series is you got to have technical knowledge.

You Must be a Hybrid

If you’ve been following me for any length of time, you know that you have to be a hybrid. I mean, that’s just the way that it is in today’s game. Many people are good at sales and have no technical knowledge, and there are many people with excellent technical knowledge, but they’re not great at sales. If you can marry those two, you’re going to crush it, but you can’t do it with just sales ability. We can help you do everything you can to get better in that area of your game. But you got to look for the experts when it comes to technical knowledge. I would be a hypocrite if I didn’t tell you that was the case. I’ve got letters behind my name, and you should earn them too.

With COVID Came Opportunity

When COVID hit, it changed the landscape of continuing education and designations. You can go to the National Alliance website right now, and you can buy a subscription. It’s around $700 a year. And that subscription is going to let you take as many of their classes as you want. And you can test and get your designations. Isn’t that crazy? $700 bucks. It would be best if you were a sponge. That is one of the premier insurance education places in the country. That’s where I got my CIC. And that’s where I got my CRM.

I think it’s important, though, to understand that you’re not getting your designation so that you can vomit insurance-speak all over the table when you’re talking to clients and prospects. Quite frankly, they don’t care. I know that many of you will probably get your feathers ruffled about that, but honestly, clients and prospects don’t want to hear the ins and outs of the insurance.

You Must be an Interpreter

You need the technical knowledge because you’re the one that’s going to have to be the interpreter. You’re going to have to take those complex insurance things and break them down into layman’s terms so that you can relay the things that are affecting those people. Business owners don’t want to do insurance for a living. If they did, they wouldn’t be doing what they’re doing right now. But if you can master the technical end of our game, and then you can take those technical insurance concepts and put those into terms that your prospects will understand at the point of sale, you’re going to kill it when you get in front of that. But you have to temper that. And that’s where the sales ability comes in.

You Must Listen

A good salesperson knows that they should always listen more than they should speak. So if you can take these technical insurance concepts and learn to ask open-ended questions so that your prospect gets led down a path to comprehension of what you’re trying to get them to understand, you’re going to win way more than you’re going to lose. Still, you can’t do that unless you have the knowledge to do it.

Look for Other Educational Opportunities

Now, there are all kinds of other places you can get technical insurance knowledge. Insurance carriers offer a plethora of webinars and live training events, and call-ins. So do wholesale brokers, especially when it comes to more complex things like cyber. And even the property market in a lot of the parts of the country now. Take advantage of these things. They inundate my inbox. And I think that we’re often concerned that they’re going to try and sell us something. That’s not where we should focus. We should be worried that if they’re advertising it, it’s essential and we need to know it. If nothing else, so that we know what to listen for at the point of sale.

Real Life Stings

I ran into a situation with one of my producers this last week, where I went back and listened to a phone call with a prospect. And this thing could have been a Saturday Night Live skit. The producer got entrenched in what he thought the prospect needed, and the prospect got ingrained in what they felt they needed. And neither one of them ever said what they were thinking. So they continued down a path that was leading to nowhere. As I listened to the call, I kept thinking that it was my fault.   If I had just made sure that this person was invested in ongoing continuing education to get their game on point on an even higher level than it is right now, that conversation would not have lasted as long as it was. But what happened was it ended up costing us an account. And because it cost us an account, I drilled down. And you know what? As the leader in the organization, it’s on me. I’m the one who has to make sure that my people follow through on our value proposition.

I’m the one who needs to make sure that as Florida risk partners, we’re practicing what we preach. So here’s what I’m going to challenge you to do. You’ve got just about six months between now and the end of the year. Make it your mission to become the best version of yourself, technically, between now and then, because as the country opens back up, those subscriptions from the National Alliance are going to go away, and it’s going to cost you a lot more money. What better time to invest in yourself than right now. And when you decide to do that, you’re going to kill it in commercial insurance


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