March 7th, 2020 marks two years in my journey with Aflac! When I started with Aflac in March of 2018, I constantly heard veteran agents say that it takes three years to grow a good sized book of business. Even though I wanted to fast forward my career to be a third-year agent, all I could do was take it one day, one week, one quarter, one year at a time. After my first official year with Aflac I knew that I was fully committed to making Aflac my career. I was dedicated to making my second year better than my first and to set myself up for a great third year.
Looking back at my second year there are two lessons that I learned through the process. Two lessons that I will take with me as I dive headfirst into my third year with Aflac.
- Building Strong Business Relationships
I remember preparing my work goals for 2019 and saying that I want to build my Aflac business on relationships. I had spent a whole year building my business on cold calls and I didn’t want to rely on that again. A few days later I got a phone call about a networking group that was starting in Valdosta, GA called Business Network International. After I attended the interest meeting, I was a member!
The group was focused on making referrals but also taught a whole lot about building strong business relationships. Being a part of this group really helped me direct all my focus on what strong business relationships look like. This was able to help me pivot my business from selling insurance to strangers to being confident in asking for referrals. I was able turn to people who liked me, people who knew me and people who trusted me to ask them for introductions to people who could be my potential customers.
This new mindset of relationships not only helped me get new clients but also helped me elevate my level of customer service. I started taking my relationships with my clients very seriously. I would save their cell and policy numbers to my phone so when they called, I knew exactly who it was. I kept a strict calendar to make sure I checked in with each one of my accounts every quarter to see if there was anything they needed. I even took the time to send my new clients a thank you card to let them know how much I appreciated being their Aflac agent.
- Owning the role of an Aflac agent
For whatever reason, my first year and some months with Aflac I was kind of embarrassed to say that I sell insurance. It honestly took me a while to get in my groove and to believe in the ‘Aflac dream’. It wasn’t until:
- I was able to help a few people with their Aflac claims
- Understand what 40 hours in the insurance world looks like on a weekly basis, and
- Have consistent income coming in every month from work that was put in the year before
that I was really proud to be an Aflac agent!
Once I was able to see these three things happen was when I really understood what it means to be an Aflac agent. I look back and don’t understand why it took me so long to be proud of what I do every day, but I think it is all a part of the journey.
Now when people ask what I do I am so proud to say I am an Aflac agent. When they ask what that consist of, I get to say that I help people file their claim when they have a sickness or accident. I have answered phone calls when a client is in the face of cancer and they haven’t told their significant other, they called me, their Aflac agent first. I have sat through meetings with the death certificate in my hand of a policyholder who passed away from cancer, and I get to be the agent who files their last year of cancer claims. I get to be the agent who sees small business grow, watches employees get promotions and see families who struggle with infertility bring their miracle babies home.
I get to be a small part in all these stories because I AM an Aflac agent. And now, in my second year as an agent, am proud of myself and all the other hard-working agents.
Now that my second year with Aflac has passed, I am nothing but eager and excited for what my third year has to offer. It has already taken unexpected twist and turns but I trust in the process. I can hold my head higher due to the lessons I learned in my first year and the take away from my second year. It means so much to be with such a caring company and to be a part of something bigger than myself.
Stay happy & healthy,