Ask Our Leaders: EFC Javier Rodriguez on Annual Reviews

We here at First Financial Security, Inc. are starting a new blog column to give field leaders a platform to impart their wisdom on all our agents. We ask leaders how they maintain success, the best ways to stay motivated and other topics of interest to the field. Welcome to a new series called Ask Our Leaders.

Last month, Executive Field Chairman Javier Rodriguez took time during a Champions Club call to give us advice on how to keep up with annual reviews and use them to connect and check in with your clients. We caught up with him afterward to ask him to elaborate on his presentation.

What advice do you have on staying successful in a turbulent year like 2020?

Javier: The key to succeeding in any year is staying in touch with your clients. For example, National Life Group just paid out its first COVID-19 death benefit a few weeks ago. This is really big news, so I have been using it as an opportunity to call every client I have to check in on them. I ask how they are doing and tell them the story, then I see if they need any coverage changes or have any questions for me.

Do you have any other events or moments you use to check in on your clients?

Javier: I talked during the Champions Club call about how the annual review is the most important time to get in touch with people — this is a built-in, recurring time in every client’s policy that’s the perfect chance to call them, but some agents still don’t reach out. Everyone should be keeping track of when policy reviews are approaching and using this opportunity to show the client that they are looking out for their interests.

We hold an FFS Business Opportunity Presentation not only to present the benefits of the FFS opportunity to prospects but also to resell the dream to existing agents. It’s there to remind them why they joined in the first place, and the same is true of events. The annual review holds the same function, and not just to show clients the numbers but also to remind them of why they got the policy in the first place — for their kids, their grandkids, their legacy, and for living benefits.

Do you have a system for staying on top of annual reviews?

Javier: Spreadsheets are your best friend throughout this whole process. First, you have to know who needs a call, which starts by gathering clients that have an upcoming review or have increased activity in their account. You find this information through the carriers. Company log in portals, such as National Life Group's portal, often give you phone numbers and email lists that you can export.

Once you’ve gathered this client list, start by calling anyone who has increased activity or recent premium increases. Always open the call by asking them how they’ve been doing. First and foremost, you are there to give them your time and check in on them. Then, resell them on why they got their policy in the first place — this will help get them to schedule their review. Tell them you have an important tool that can help their family as well, then bring an Emergency Binder as a gift to the meeting. This is how you can lead by giving.

What other advice do you have for agents right now?

Javier: Staying productive is important, but it’s not all about being busy. I have a saying, “You can be busy and not be in business. You can be busy and not be profitable.” Instead of focusing on being busy, I say focus on staying connected with clients. People tend to say we’re in this to make money and help people, but I urge everyone to flip that around — we should be helping people first and then making money.

Check out our recent post on Life Insurance Awareness Month to see why 2020 is the year we need life insurance the most.

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