Professional Development: More than Continuing Education

"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest."

Benjamin Franklin


It's one month, two weeks, or that last weekend before your insurance license expires, and you're cramming coursework in and begging for a friend or co-worker to be your proctor.

Can you relate? If so, you're one of many that are shortchanging their personal and professional development by viewing continuing education as a chore and not an opportunity. Keep in mind that continuing education isn't limited to coursework and testing to maintain your license. There are several ways you can continue to challenge and educate yourself to possess the knowledge and confidence to be a leader in your field and the trusted advisor that your clients expect:


  • Networking – one of the best ways to educate yourself is by learning from others in your field that has faced similar challenges and found solutions to overcome them. Fresh insight can ignite new ideas and allow you to work through issues in a manner that will resonate with you more deeply. Networking opportunities can present themselves through the local chamber, small business group, and insurance and technology conferences. In some instances, these conferences offer credit toward your continuing education hours. Networking can also open the door to a mentor. Consider asking someone to be a mentor to you or vice versa. In both ways, you will continue to learn from the thoughts and experiences of others in your industry.  At Assure Alliance, we have a growing network of 181 agencies that are continually encouraged and provided opportunities to network together and build that rapport. Who knows what you are going through better than those who have been through it or are going through it. 
  • Technology/Software Training – development shouldn't be limited to sales and coverage education. Consider how much time you spend working in multiple software applications during a typical workday. Rarely do we know and understand the many capabilities that these systems offer, leaving us room to absorb improved processes and tips/tricks to perform our duties more efficiently. There are easily accessible how-to videos on the software companies' websites or YouTube that will help you maximize usage of the advanced processing systems you are using.
  • Marketing – We live in a digital age. Although insurance basics remain unchanged, the methods for marketing yourself, your agency, and what sets you apart are continually changing and becoming increasingly digital. Staying educated on the latest offerings and strategies to stay relevant online is an area of education that never stops. Assure Alliance offers the Training and Learning center through SIAA, where there are also hundreds of training courses that will take your marketing to the next level. We also provide training and development in-house to our all-in-one marketing platform, Accelerate.


If we take professional development to the agency level one step further, all agency principals need to establish a formal education program for growth and retention purposes. Training solutions offered are critical to the health and morale of your business as an investment in the education of your staff results in a culture where employees feel valued. Remember: when your employees feel valued, they'll work harder for your agency.

Education is an invaluable resource in creating lasting success and retention in your agency. The key to utilizing education is viewing it as a backbone from where other limbs operate—the stronger the spine, the stronger the body. The education and professional development of you and your staff are critical. Making it a focal point rather than a chore is an excellent way to add value to the agency's body.





Category: Agent Success