AM Best News Article Interviewing Troy Korsgaden

AM Best Review Magazine released an interview with Troy Korsgaden. Embedded in this 3 minute read is a video blog with Troy discussing Specialization. Today everything is moving so quickly, and you can't be an expert at everything. We want to be, but as a generalist, you just never can learn everything.

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Author: Agents Need to Transition From Generalists to Specialists

In his book, Troy Korsgaden discusses why agents need to change their organizational structure to grow their businesses.


Specialization: The Master Key to Agency Transformation

As insurance agents look to grow their businesses across various lines of insurance and meet evolving customer needs, it's important that they shift from being a generalist to a specialist to increase efficiency, retention and revenue, said Troy Korsgaden, founder and principal of consulting firm Korsgaden International, and author of the book Specialization: The Master Key to Agency Transformation.

Following is an edited transcript of an interview with AM Best TV.

Why is it important for agents to transition from being a generalist to a specialist?

Today everything is moving so quickly, and you can't be an expert at everything. We want to be, but as a generalist, you just never can learn everything. By focusing your team members on one thing, they learn more quickly. They become profit centers faster. They give a better experience to the customer. Today it's all about putting the customer first in everything you do. You need a collaboration of experts or specialists.

What if agents are resistant to making that change?

It's not only agents who are resistant but also current team members. It's also tough for firm owners because they need to get out of the old mindset. Many want to, but they're afraid of their current teams pushing back.

You have to get everybody on board with the idea that the next person who comes to the agency is going to be a specialist and it's going to be good for everyone. When you get that buy-in, it becomes very easy. You might start with business lines and have somebody just be an expert at business. It might be auto insurance or home or flood. You begin with one area and keep building on it.

How have you helped agents in your own agency become specialists?

I lucked out when I first started. My company gave me a big old book of business called the phone book. I know what it's like to scratch out an agency and work by myself.

When I started putting on what I call productive capacity, people to do what I did and do it better, then I grew. We went from zero employees to 25 in our agency firm.

What do you hope readers will take away from the book?

It's a quick takeaway for them to start the process. We know what customers want and what firms need to do into the future to become a gateway to all things insurance and financial services. That helps block out existing and future competition. If you do that, then it's easy to start to execute. Execution is everything. Ideas are awesome, but without execution, we all know it is delusion. It's all about doing and doing it now.

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