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Article: HS/0001

16 April 2012

Ideas that give You SHAKTI

Quality vs. Quantity in agency recruitment

Are you too confused on the eternal question that development officers and unit managers ask their bosses regularly: Should I recruit a large number of agents or should I recruit selectively for good quality? Let me clear the air on this question. Quality comes from quantity.

It is quite impossible to predict who will be a successful agent. I have known housewives without any selling skills becoming corporate club members. I have seen stammering agents achieving MDRT qualification. I have seen a very poor young agent submit Rs.80,000 as annual premium within 3 days of receiving his agency code. None of these persons had a typical sales person attitude that we read about. There is no system of pre-selection evaluation that can throw up such agents.

The general myths of agency recruitment (that people from a particular community will succeed, or people with a good past track record will succeed, etc) do not work with any degree of certainty. In agency recruitment, the proof of the pudding lies in its taste. Select a person and let him experience selling life insurance. Time will tell whether he will succeed or not.

So how do we get agents who will be successful? To answer that question let me ask you another question. You want to buy a house. How do you ensure that you get a good house within a reasonable budget? You have to look at a number of houses right? The same goes for life insurance agents. This is called the economics of search. The more you search, the more the chances of getting the kind of agent you are looking for, that is the particular qualities you are looking for.

Quality therefore is a function of the quantity you recruit. The more you recruit the more the chances of having a good team.


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SHAKTI is an acronym denoting strength. From the SHAKTI tools of IIST you will get the strength to learn, to improve, to excel and to master the science and art of selling life insurance. The full form of SHAKTI is Skills Habits Attitude Knowledge Training Interventions. Learn the selling skills and working habits, develop an attitude to excel, and acquire the knowledge of life insurance and products. Give yourself the SHAKTI to succeed in life.