Confidence is essential to a successful career in any industry, but it is particularly the case in the insurance business. As agents find solutions for client/members, it’s important they show confidence in the products and services they sell.
1. Quit Negative Self-Talk and Visualize Your Success
We know constructive criticism, even from ourselves, can push us forward to bigger, better things. But too much negative thinking can hinder your confidence and job performance. Instead of focusing on what didn’t go your way, think about when you succeeded — and then visualize your future wins.
2. Increase Your Knowledge
Being confident in the insurance industry means staying on top of the latest news, trends and regulations. In addition to industry newsletters and professional organizations, take advantage of Farm Bureau’s vast network and education opportunities. For example, Farm Bureau agents from 14 states gather annually at the Sales Conference to hear from top industry speakers and learn key sales tactics to help grow their businesses.
3. Pick Up New Related Skills
Do you feel like you lack certain skills to excel in your job? There’s always room to grow as you advance in your career. Try out Skillshare, Lynda, Coursera or Khan Academy for online learning. If you’d rather take a class at your local community college or university, many institutes allow you to enroll as a non-degree seeking student.
4. Project Physical Confidence
Did you know that your body language can affect not only how others see you, but also how you see yourself? Start with your clothing — choose pieces that make you look and feel good. Speak assertively, but not necessarily aggressively. Adopt a “power pose,” a way of standing tall and presenting yourself that could boost confidence.
5. Practice with Friends and Family
As an insurance agent, you’ll spend a lot of time pitching to potential client/members. If that thought makes you squirm, remember that practice makes perfect — to get rid of fear and apprehension when public speaking, practice in front of friends and family members. Each time you present, you’ll become more self-assured.
6. Go Above and Beyond Whenever Possible
Whenever you are presented with a task, always ask yourself, “What more can I do?” By going the extra mile, you’ll feel an extra sense of pride in your work and yourself. And for client/members this can mean the difference between retention and drop off.
7. Ask Questions and Be Curious
While not knowing everything can make you feel insecure, you’re never going to have all the answers. Get comfortable with asking questions — they’ll help you make better decisions and offer even better solutions to your client/members.
8. Listen Deeply
That goes for working with client/members, too! You can have all the confidence in the world, but it’s all for naught if you don’t truly listen. To fully understand your customer’s needs — and close the sale — take a step back and truly hear their concerns, hopes and dreams. Effective communication starts with deep listening.
9. Rely on Your Farm Bureau Support Team
One of the best ways to build confidence in sales is to surround yourself with quality people who lift you up. At Farm Bureau, you have an entire support team to turn to for advice, expertise, and mentorship.
10. Be Prepared
Do you have a big client/member meeting coming up? A significant factor in developing sales confidence is planning and preparing. Anticipate potential questions, practice presenting and be sure to have all of the necessary materials you need.
11. Ask for Feedback
Helpful feedback, both from client/members and from managers, provides you with the opportunity to improve your sales job performance — and boost your confidence in the process. Remember, you’re surrounded by coaches and colleagues who want you to succeed.
12. Handle Rejection the Right Way
You’ll inevitably face rejection in your insurance career, and it’s easy to take it personally. When things don’t go your way, consider a new way to move forward. Take this chance to review your current sales strategy and identify what went wrong — and what didn’t. Use this information as a tool to focus on your next sales opportunity.
Don’t forget to pat yourself on the back and acknowledge your career successes! You’ve come so far, but Farm Bureau can help take you further. To get started on your journey, learn about our Developing Agent Program and connect with a District Manager.