This issue of Insurance Journal features exclusive results from the 2018 Young Agents Survey where more than 500 young agents nationwide shared their views on the insurance industry and their experience as an agent. (See page 18 for the full report.)
Overall, young agents seem happy with their career choice and the industry. Year after year young agents cite the freedom and challenges that come with the job of an independent agent as perks of the job. However, there are some things young agents would change about the insurance industry or their career if given the chance.
When asked about what they would change about the industry, a number of young agents wrote in the survey that they would add more opportunities for women in leadership positions. Young agents responding to the survey also noted that if given the chance to change things they would include more young, diverse professionals across the industry.
Several young agents said in the survey they would ask their carrier partners to listen to their pleas for better technology. Underwriting takes too long, several added.
Several agents commented that younger professionals need better training and mentoring. One young agent wrote in the survey: “The independent agency channel is a challenging one. I think if there were a better IA road map, that carriers can share with their agents, it would help more people succeed.”
Young agents want more support from the insurance companies they work with, not just their own agencies. “Unless you’re an employee of the insurance company, they expect you to perform/sell more and more, with less and less support,” one agent said in the survey.
Better and easier lines of communication between agents and carriers was cited as something they would change as well.
Likely the most common complaint of young agents in this year’s survey was the industry’s use of technology. As one agent stated in the survey: “I really want the industry to catch up with technology particularly on the carrier and agency management system side.”
Perhaps the one area that young agents hope would change is the reputation and negative “stigma” often placed on the insurance industry itself.
One agent wrote in the survey: “I’d like to see the industry become more respected. To some we are just a little better than used car salesmen.”
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