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Old 07-08-2009, 01:40 PM
 
25,169 posts, read 34,410,134 times
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A friend of mine is entering the insurance sales industry as a sales person. Every wage seems to be based on a commission. They are not paying the person wage for the several days of orientation. Nor do I believe a contract has been signed yet. I'm a bit weary and suspicious; however, I've never worked in insurance before so I could be wrong.

Does anybody have advice and insight into the field of selling insurance? Any pitfalls my friend should know about?

Last edited by artsyguy; 07-08-2009 at 01:57 PM..
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Old 07-08-2009, 02:17 PM
 
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Very few people succeed in insurance sales, and it's pretty much always commission based only.

My family business growing up was insurance, my father owned a brokerage that sold promarily commercial insurance, although he also wrote homeowners and auto. It was a lot of work, although he did slowly build the company into a propserous one. He also managed to get in at the start of what would grow to be a large suburban area, and for many years he had virtually no competition in town for commercial policies.

I have a friend who sells for Aflac, she's working at night as a bartender because she hasn't made enough sales to make a living at it. She's giving insurance one more year, and if she can't at least cut back on the night gig she's going to quit the insurance job.
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Old 07-08-2009, 02:36 PM
 
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I'm looking into a couple of insurance/ financial advisor positions and I would definitely tell your friend to stay away from places that are completely commissioned based (especially if she's going in without a decent book of people to whom she can sell). I've gotten a bunch of calls to come in for interviews from a lot of financial/insurance places and the only people I give the time of day are those who offer base plus commission (with some sort of training salary) or at least those that offer some small base salary (plus commission) for the first year for newbies which then transitions to strictly commissioned based. At least then you have a safety net to learn the ropes and develop business.

It's just too sketchy an economy to bank on a completely commissioned position. As annerk pointed out, I would advise your friend to have a second job.
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Old 07-08-2009, 06:12 PM
 
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Great information. Any others?
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Old 07-08-2009, 06:51 PM
 
Location: Nassau, Long Island, NY
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Insurance sales = unpaid job. You work for free UNLESS you earn them MORE money (price of a policy) than they have to pay you (your fraction of what you sold, aka, a commission).

They also will expect you to exhaust your friends and family list and harass them to buy from you. If you say "no" prepare to be harassed by your sales manager because when it comes to new insurance salespeople that is the only business the vast majority can bring in, especially in this day and age when there are so many providers of financial products. Then once your friends and family list is done and you can't make a go of it cold-calling, that's it for you. Result? Insurance company = got a few policies via your friends and family list. You = wasted a lot of time working full-time at a job that doesn't pay you anything unless you bring in much more money for them. Why do you think sales is a revolving door? Those insurance places are notorious for hiring ANYBODY too. They don't care. They don't have to be choosy because they are not putting themselves at risk. The employee takes all the risk.
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Old 07-08-2009, 07:01 PM
 
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Agreed. If you want to actually make money in insurance sales, learn the commercial side of it and get licensed for P&C. Commercial lines account executives make a decent living and are respected. Expect to learn and earn from the ground up, but commercial lines are the way to go in insurance.
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Old 07-09-2009, 08:09 AM
 
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I have a few relatives who are insurance salespeople, and I would say be GOOD at it. If you are good at the job you can easily pull in six figures. If you are bad...well, you won't last long. It seems to be a hit or miss kind of profession. Some people have the right personality to excel at it, some don't. It seems like you will either be very good at it, or struggle to survive. There doesn't seem to be an in between.
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Old 07-09-2009, 08:16 PM
 
25,169 posts, read 34,410,134 times
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Great. I will tell my friend this.
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Old 12-13-2013, 03:04 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
1 posts, read 752 times
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Default How to go about hiring a sales person

Hi,
I found this forum trying to find out the best way to find motivated sales people.
I realize it is quite old, but maybe you guys have an idea about how best to go about it.
We are a prescription eyeglasses retailer and want to target brokers, as a health benefit.
Any thoughts?
Thanks in advance for your ideas
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