What's your current role?
I educate our internal teams at Flexport about insurance because although our main revenue driver is freight, we also offer an insurance product. If there's any coverage questions, I'll hop in to help answer questions. Although other freight focused projects at the company don't impact me, I understand that having a variety of service offerings helps the company grow its bottom line.
Which type of companies are going to win in the future of insurance?
Direct to consumer is not as big or as easy as people expected them to be. You can look at general market share and premium dollars written and the top seven are still your brick and mortar shops. Five or ten years ago, everyone thought if you just build it, people will come but now we all realize it’s not as simple as that. There’s still a consultative aspect to insurance - companies that are able to blend the consultative relationship with a great customer experience will be the most successful.
What’s your advice for folks trying to break into insurance?
Get in early and get in often. If you’re a 25 year old and you have a few years of insurance under your belt, then it’s going to set you worlds apart. It might not be the sexiest thing to talk about at a bar, but you’ll be setting yourself up to be ahead in this industry where there’s a lot of financial stability and buy the bar eventually! I started in my late 20s—and I wish I had known to just get into it right out of college.
What’s the best way to learn about selling insurance—especially in a new area?
If you’re a salesperson like me and you’ve got a candy manufacturer that’s looking for a general liability, cyber, and worker’s comp, then where do you start? Do you know which markets to go to? Which rates are best? Which coverages are excluded? Do you even know what an exclusion is? It’s a lot to learn, but it’s not impossible. One of the most important things if you don’t know anything, is to read the insurance form. That can put people to sleep, but understanding the form and the coverages is the foundation. Once you understand that, then you can have a more nuanced conversation about how to market that account. Knowledge is so important.