From Kevin Dorgan:
As many of you know I have joined First Choice Agents Alliance as Director, Technology and Marketing. For the past two years I have worked with First Choice as a consultant and I am excited by this expanded opportunity.
Why First Choice is My Choice? I know this is a critical time for Nationwide agents. The decisions you make in the next few months will impact your personal and business lives for many years to come. First Choice provides the best opportunity for me and our members to succeed in this new world.
• Experience and passion of the management team. Truly an Elite group leading this organization. I am humbled to be a part of it.
• The Nationwide pedigree. It would be hard for me to join an organization that didn’t have the Nationwide background.
• The Growth of the membership has been outstanding! In the past 24 months FCAA has gone from 50 members in 13 states to 250 in 24 states! And I feel like it is just getting started!
What FCAA offers the members:
• Educational opportunities. We have continual webinars from carriers, tech vendors, marketing companies, and myself.
• Peer Networking. To say the members know each other is an understatement!
• Revenue. FCAA is large and profitable.
• Annual Member Meeting.
• Vendor partners.
• Buy/Sell opportunities within the membership.
• Some of the most successful agencies I have worked with in my career. From Hall of Fame, to Presidents, to Champions, to Choice Plus, to agents just starting out. It’s great to be able to continue my relationship with them.
• Strong growth within their own agencies.
• Excellent loss ratios.
• Staying up to speed with industry trends and striving to be a Best Practice Agency.
I wish each of you success! And if you are thinking about joining, let’s go! Do business with people you know! Contact myself or one of our team members to learn more: https://fcaalliance.com/contact/
First Choice Agents Alliance is proud to welcome Scott Mudger to the family, as the VP of Personal Lines and Agency Development, effective March 18th, 2019. Scott is an experienced Business Development Sales Leader with a diverse background in the insurance industry. He has worked alongside exclusive and independent agencies and spent the most recent 24 years with Nationwide Insurance where he held numerous roles. His experience includes partnerships and leadership responsibilities in claims, claims management, catastrophe management, product underwriting, financial sales, merger and acquisitions, and sales management.
For the last 13 years, Scott served as a Sales Manager collaborating with agencies in South Carolina and Georgia. His passion is to build true and lasting relationships with the focus of increasing agency revenue through coaching, training, marketing, and accountable business planning. Scott has earned a number of conference awards and National Sales Manager Awards during his career at Nationwide.
Scott and Kim, his wife of 25 years, reside in Blythewood, SC with their two children, Carson and Callie. Carson is 21 and a junior at Presbyterian College majoring in Business Administration. Callie is 17, a junior in high school, and an avid competition cheerleader who is working hard on her college decision. Scott lives by the motto of the 4 F’s – Faith, Family, Fitness, and Fun. In his free time, he enjoys a competitive golf game.
1) Our #1 goal is to help you increase your agency revenue.
2) 100% commission on directly appointed carrier codes.
3) Immediate profit sharing and growth bonus opportunities (No minimum DWP requirements).
4) Over 98% of current participants are EA’s (with over 100 members and growing!).
5) Level set maintenance fees that are not tied to revenue.
6) Experienced leadership (we know your world!).
7) Fully trained brokerage staff.
8) Earn dividends based on FCAA profits.
9) Enhanced commissions on E&S and Flood business in most cases.
10) Agency E&O options through Liberty Mutual (plus commission).
11) FCAA sponsored annual meetings with carriers, agency management system vendors, lead generation vendors, etc. (Network with your peers).
12) You OWN the business!
13) Contracts with commercial and personal lines carriers on a National and Regional basis, including Nationwide.
14) We have the expertise to assist you with technology and marketing.
15) Our partnership with Wingman Insurance provides you the ability to offer a premier Cyber Insurance program to your customers.
For more information click here to watch a 30 minute webinar with our COO Diane Wagner.
By Diane Wagner, COO, First Choice Agents Alliance.
Change is coming and now is not the time to stand in place. It is the time to act and prepare for the opportunity ahead. Embrace the potential that independency offers your agency as you make the transition from Exclusive to Independent agency.
This new world is NOT for the faint of heart. There are a number of strategic and tactical things to consider as you make this change for your business (and personal) life. Are you up for the challenge? Do you have the time and resources to learn new systems and ways of doing business? From a strategic standpoint, do you have a plan? Does it include the foundations for success: Growth, Profit and Perpetuation?
1. The Sky is the Limit!
This is your business and the sky is the limit. What is your vision for your agency in five years? Ten years? What about the end game? Down the road, will you sell, perpetuate? Start building a plan with your vision in mind, from 30,000 feet.
Create a strategy to help bring you to your end game in bite-size pieces. Create 90-day plans with execution at a high level. Hold yourself and your staff accountable for the results you desire. Ask yourselves weekly, “Is what we are doing today as an agency bringing us closer to our plan or further away?”
2. You Get to Do What You Love!
What type of business do you enjoy writing and what would you like to write more of? If commercial insurance is outside of your comfort zone, are you looking to hire? A strong mix of business is a key to growth. Again, the sky is the limit and the past is the past.
What insurance company contracts will you need to achieve this vision and how will you feed those new relationships? If you don’t know it already, in the independent world, the insurance companies expect to be fed!
3. You Have Choices!
Start the evaluation of whether you will join a group or go it alone.
Take your time, don’t be swayed by one-time offers, such as reduced fees, to join now. There is plenty of time to properly evaluate the best program for your agency. This is a very important decision in the life of your agency and it should not be taken lightly.
What are the features and benefits of the groups you are considering for your agency based on your plan? What is the return on the investment? Joining any group should be an investment. Know your numbers and what the specific financial return will be. Understand what the contract says. What are your obligations and how specifically do you exit if it’s not the right program for you? Make sure you are in no way jeopardizing your existing contract!
4. You Can Decide on Your Technology.
Invest in your agency management system now.
The purchase and implementation of an agency management system is a massive undertaking and is a critical decision in the life of an agency. Don’t wait to be pushed into the deep end of the pool! Go now, go slow, and learn. The swimming will be a lot easier for you and your staff. This is not an area to skimp relative to time or investment. Do your homework. Every agency’s needs are different. What may be a good system for one may not be for another. There is no time like the present.
Diane Wagner is the Chief Operating Officer for First Choice Agents Alliance. She has 35+ years in the insurance industry, including 13 years as owner of a SIAA territory. She can help you build your plan for independency and evaluate any aggregator / cluster opportunities you might be considering.
First Choice is an aggregator group run by Nationwide agents with a mission to help Nationwide make the transition to independency. It’s important to know who you are aggregating your books of business with prior to making that decision.
We are here to help. Do business with people you know!
Absolutely! But understand there are minimum premium requirements. For the carriers to devote their underwriting resources to you, they expect you to devote premium to them.
Here are some questions to ask of yourself when considering getting a direct appointment with a carrier:
- Do you have the knowledge to sell the products the carrier offers?
- Do you have producers to tackle the market?
- Do you have the premium volume?
- What is your loss ratio?
- Have you had a contract terminated by an insurance carrier?
If any of these questions cause you concern, then they will be of concern to the carriers as well.
- Having direct carrier appointments, you can earn 30-50% more commission for business you broker today.
- With direct appointments you have direct access to your carriers. No third-party intermediary to deal with. Time is money!
- Growth incentives and Profit Sharing from Dollar One!
- Many regional carriers not available with most brokers.
- Middle Market Access as well as small commercial
- Excess & Surplus Lines arrangements paying 20% more commission than you could earn on your own.
- Flood contracts paying 20% additional revenue with Direct Access
- Chubb High Net Worth personal lines access
- Strategic Coaching and Education
- You OWN all business written through an alliance with First Choice
- You know us! You have personal friends using First Choice. Aggregate your volume with people you know!