How Do You Make Money for Your Clients?

I have a question for you today. As a producer, what are you doing to help your clients make money? Do you even understand what I’m talking about? It’s okay. Don’t worry about it. That’s what we’re going to talk about today.

Do You Make Money for Your Clients?

What do you do to make money for your clients? This game isn’t all about us. I mean, it’s nice to get commission checks, but the fact of the matter is we have to do something to earn them, right? Well, it’s more than just a service. It’s more than just issuing certificates. It’s more than just making sure we’re there to answer insurance questions or file claims. The fact is you have to be an advocate for your clients sometimes in ways you didn’t think you needed to be. I ran into that situation this week. And the question that I pose to you is, what would you have done if you were me? Now here’s the scenario. I flew up to St. Louis to meet with a friend who represents a general contractor that was not qualifying for construction jobs because their Experience Mod had gotten to a 1.1.

Sometimes Clients Don’t Listen

Now, this particular agent had told his client multiple times that he needed to get a return to work program into place.  He explained that he needed to make sure that all of the safety programs were on lockdown and that they had a plan to ensure that indemnity stayed off worker’s comp claims. And well, as it happens some times, his client let that information go in one ear and out the other. He reached out to me and asked me what I would do. And I told him, I’m going to be in your area anyhow, so let’s go ahead and meet, and we’ll walk through what we need to do step by step. So, he had the experience modification worksheet. He had all the loss runs, and he had all of the payroll audits for the last several years. And we poured through all of that information.

What Would You Have Done?

Now, my question is, what would you have done in this situation? Would you have told your client, “Eh, look, I told you all of this, and you didn’t listen. So I’m sorry that you’ve lost out on several million dollars worth of work because you can’t qualify, but it’s going to take a couple of years for your Mod to come down based on your lack of loss control”. Well, if that’s what you would have done. I want to let you know that you’re who I compete against every day, and it’s one of the reasons why I’m able to close so much business. What we did is we dug deep. We looked at the loss runs, and honestly, they weren’t that bad, but they had a shock loss that was much larger than I would have expected to see. So, I asked the question, “Tell me a little bit about this loss?”

The Story Behind the Story

And guess what, I found out that it was a loss that didn’t even happen on a construction site. The client has a part-time cleaning lady that cleans their office for them. The client instructed her not to go to the second floor because some roof damage resulted in a leak.  The leak resulted in the floor rotting, but she chose not to listen. And she went to the second floor and immediately fell through the ceiling and fractured her arm. We also found out that this same employee had four prior workers’ compensation claims filed. Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding. Think we noticed a trend here? But that’s not where we stopped. We not only looked at the loss runs, and we validated the Experience Mod, but we took that claim out of the Experience Mod. For illustration purposes, what do you think happened? That Mod dropped from 1.11 to 0.96. Every year before that claim showing up on the Mod, we had been 0.86 to 0.96.

History Repeats Itself

So, now we had a history framework that we could appeal to the company, who decided that our client wasn’t safe enough to work for them. The next thing we did is we showed them that this person had had four prior workers’ compensation claims, and we fell on the sword and admitted that we probably should have done a more thorough job in checking before we hired her. But guess what? We adjusted the company policy, and we check that information in the future now. And we represented that to them. The other thing we did is we calculated the DART rate, and we wanted to do this because we wanted to show that the days away from work were much, much better than the average construction company in their state. And some of those companies have Mods that are below one. And we began to make the case that it’s not all about the Mod.

The Proof is in the Pudding!

The last thing that we did was we sent them a copy of the paragraph that’s at the bottom of the experience mod worksheet. Do you know what that paragraph says? It says, “This information is only for use for insurance rating purposes and rate determination. It should not get used for safety scoring in bid awards.” My question to this firm’s risk management department is that if NCCI is telling you that their data is not accurate enough to be used for this qualification process, why are you putting more faith in their data than they are? This situation shouldn’t even be a consideration for you. We’ve shown you all the reasons why it shouldn’t be. So we’re respectfully asking that you please allow our client to bid for these jobs because the things you’re trying to avoid are not present in this operation. This one claim is a fluke, it’s a one-time deal, and it should never happen again.

That is how you make money for your clients. You open up their ability to go out in big jobs again. People, it’s not just issuing certificates. It’s not filing claims. Yes, those are part of our job, but it’s going above and beyond and having the expertise to understand that no, that’s never the final answer when somebody tells you. It means not right now. And in our case, it means I don’t have enough information. Guess what? We worked, and we put together that information. If you can take the extra two minutes to do those types of things and to put great case studies together for your clients and you fight to defend them, and you act on their behalf, you’re going to kill it, commercial insurance.


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