How is a “life insurance practice” different from a “life insurance business”?

When I started in 1977, most everyone thought of this as a “career”. We talked about “business” and then “practice” became popular. It’s too bad too.

There is a lot of self-important talk about “practitioners in practice” today, but it hasn’t helped most advisors be more effective or productive. It has even made life worse for many. They are waiting for calls rather than making them.

Talk of “practice” comes from two mistaken beliefs. The first is that this is a profession like medicine or the law. It isn’t. It doesn’t have to be either. We are “dictionary professionals” who “make a trade of a specific endeavour, vocation or calling” to be sure. But, we aren’t doctors or lawyers, and that’s a good thing. Financial planning is much more an “art” than a science of higher learning anyway.

The second reason is that their work embarrasses many financial advisors – especially life insurance. They think that if they use “professional terminology”, they escape reality. They don’t. So, we get many “practitioners” in “practice” who can’t even afford to put sandwiches in their lunch pails – but they’re “professionals”. So what?

There’s a reason for this. No one needs financial planning. Clients can be made to “want” it, but they don’t “need” it. (It’s called professional selling.) However, sometimes you just have to call a doctor, a lawyer, accountant or engineer. It’s the law. Conversely, almost no one calls their financial advisor until they are in such bad shape they are beyond help – and no law prevents it.

The most successful advisors are happily in business. Other professionals only wish they had the freedom to build their businesses as you can. Aside from compliance prohibitions against misleading, exaggerating or overpromising, you can do what you want. Being in business is a tremendous advantage unavailable to professionals.

If you want to make success easier, be in business. Think and act like a businessperson. Position yourself properly. Present effectively. Promote regularly. Perform professionally. Consider the needs of your audience. Take care of your “customer”, first, last and always and they will always take care of you. Do profitable activities. Cut out unprofitable ones. Your purpose is to help your audience but your objective is to make a profit. Be in business. Do it professionally.

Learn from All Star Icon Advisors!

Advisorcraft is an insurance advisor professional development firm like none other. No other coaching firm has more experience, expertise and enthusiasm for the business than Advisorcraft. Our ICON Protocol™ approach is based on decades of personal research by our founder Jim Ruta, himself a former successful insurance advisor and executive manager of one of Canada’s largest life insurance agencies. Advisorcraft is committed to preserving, promoting and propelling the life insurance based financial advisor business with the tactics of the best of the best – the icons. For us, nothing is more gratifying than to watch ordinary people become extraordinary performers in the life insurance business. 

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