The Policy Works Blog

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on August 13, 2015

Beating the chameleon curse: 3 steps to creating more consistent documents

One of the things we routinely see when working with new clients is that their documents tend to take on the personality of the person generating them. We call it the “chameleon curse.”

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on August 10, 2015

Every proposal tells a story, too

If your submissions tell a story to underwriters about any given risk (the subject of our last blog post), then your proposals should tell the same story, but to a different audience – the business owner. How well you tell that story - the prospect’s own risk story - is often the difference in winning the business from the incumbent broker.

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on June 23, 2015

What stories do your submissions tell?

Every submission tells a story. From small floral shops to large manufacturers, the submissions your brokers create tell the stories that end up becoming policies.

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on June 8, 2015

Switching BMS systems? Keep these 3 points in mind

We’ve been hearing from more and more brokerage principals that they are switching BMS systems for their personal lines. The common thread from all of the conversations is a focus on the benefits that will come from the improved features, or functionality, that the ‘new’ software will bring. 

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on May 25, 2015

Being busy is not being valuable: 2 keys to increasing staff value in commercial lines

I recently visited a brokerage client, one you would call small to mid-sized. One of the primary commercial account executives talked about the frustration of working on ‘waste of time’ activities like generating certificates or processing endorsements for small accounts that really didn’t generate a lot of revenue.

Make no mistake, this is a common scenario. Many account executives and producers tell us they spend too much of their day on time-consuming, service-oriented tasks that take away from their primary job – making sales. This is part of the sales trap: taking any and all money that comes in through the door, without much thought to the cost to service the business.

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on May 14, 2015

Are new commercial staff not 'getting it'? These 4 steps will help.

Overheard at a brokerage recently: “We can’t seem to hire the ‘right’ producers.” A similar comment from another principal: “When we bring new people on, they don’t ‘get it.’”



We hear these refrains from brokerage owners and managers on a pretty regular basis. It’s a reality summed up in the old truism: “good people are hard to find.” Or are they? You really have to ask: exactly what aren’t these new hires 'getting’? 

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on April 29, 2015

The E&O scare: Three ways to reduce exposure at your brokerage

A mid-size brokerage had a longstanding commercial policy with an office maintenance and clean-up firm. The account was coming up for renewal just as the senior producer who handled the account was on a two-week vacation. The maintenance company informed a junior account manager, who was covering for the producer, that it was expanding its business into industrial cleaning, including some chemical and oil spill remediation.

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on April 22, 2015

Creating commercial lines success: Is there a better way?

 

Imagine your management team is in a meeting room with a huge white board. The question of the day is simple: How does your brokerage define success in commercial lines? Write it down.

The quick responses come easy. Profitable growth. High retention. Client satisfaction. Efficient operation. Trusted employees. Access to valued markets. Solid reputation. Visible brand. These are the business outcomes that will help you grow and become successful. The challenge is, how do you turn desired business outcomes into actual success?

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Posted by Steve Pieroway on April 14, 2015

Are you an office hero?

Have any of these situations happened to you recently:

  • an experienced CSR quits abruptly and leaves a large share of commercial clients temporarily “orphaned";
  • your account manager needs to process a renewal for a client but can't find the Word document on your server, or;
  • a producer loses a key account at renewal due to an aggressive price/coverage bid from a competitor.
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Posted by Steve Pieroway on February 25, 2015

Commercial staff turnover: 3 ideas to help reduce chaos when someone leaves

One of the most common reasons brokers turn to an automated solution for commercial lines is because a staff member, typically one with the most experience in commercial, is leaving. Many brokers don’t think about the state of their brokerage's commercial book until a key staff member gives notice, and at that point it's often too late.

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