Insurance is a very profitable business and sales agents can make a ton of money. People need insurance so the market is not shrinking but growing as the population enlarges.
What amazes me is the hiring practices for most Insurance companies has not changed even though we are in a new century. Let me explain the typical way an Insurance company hires, trains and loses 80% of their first year agents.
1) A cattle call goes out to anyone with an insurance license or the willingness to obtain one - Insurance companies hit all the hiring venues to find people who have sales experience or wish to get into a sales position.
2) A presentation is given where the top earners and income potential are portrayed - it is very hard to listen to a presentation and hear about people earning hundreds of thousands of dollars when the average wage for a family of 4 is not $50,000. Add to that all the toys you can purchase when you earn a lot of income and the lifestyle is hard to not envy. Insurance companies use wealth to lure people into a sales position.
3) New agents are subjected to a lot of training - this is both a good and bad thing. Most companies have a canned presentation which they say results in the majority of their sales. Yet a lot of the veteran agents don't use the presentation because they focus more on a warm market. These people don't need the presentation new agents are taught.
4) Once trained, new agents are expected to go out and produce - With the heavy emphasis on training, many companies believe that once an agent finishes training he has all he needs to be successful. But the truth is, working for anyone seldom comes with no expenses. Yes new agents are trained. But they have two expenses to contend with everyday; their normal living expenses and the business expenses they incur from working this job. If agents don't generate income in a relatively short period of time they run the risk of being in a financial hole trying to work in Insurance.
5) Most agents only write business on themselves and their friends, then their business dries up - I consider this to be a bad decision. Yes, if you need insurance and you sell it, you should buy it from yourself. But if you only buy because of the new job then you are not truly a salesman. Like any business you will only survive in sales if you can generate enough activity from the public to support yourself.
It's time to invest in new agents with much more than training. Cover the cost of doing business so agents have a fair chance of succeeding.