Paul Carroll

Based on what you’ve written for us, I gather that the first thing an agency or brokerage should do in setting strategy is to think about carriers’ expectations. Could you tell me a little bit more about how that plays out in real life?

James Keane

it’s probably a little different this year than it has been in the past. Carriers’ expectations have changed so much, so fast.

In the past, their expectations were simple. They wanted you to write business, they wanted it to be profitable business, and they wanted you to write as much of it as you could, as often as you could. Now, their appetites are changing. But how quickly are they changing? How are their appetites different now than they were three or four or five months ago? Appetites are continuously evolving. Being able to have those conversations with your carrier partners is critical so you know exactly what’s changing throughout the year.

And you have to be able to measure everything so you understand what you’re trying to accomplish. If your goal is to write X number of policies from new business, are you able to build that in backward by saying, If I want to write 100 policies, and I have a 50% close ratio, that means I need to quote 200 policies? So what do I need to do to quote 200 policies? How many leads do I need to speak to get to those two hundred quotes?

And what’s the value of a policy? Even though your goal might be to write 100 policies, what if you can write 50 policies that are each twice as profitable? Is that better?

Understanding all the numbers is super critical for your agency to evolve and grow throughout the year and stay nimble.

Read the full article featuring SIAA’s Vice President, National Sales, James Keane, published by Insurance Though Leadership on February 14, 2024.