Three things you can do right now to be a better leader

| 12 Sep 2017

After being a highly successful insurance adviser, you are now struggling in the pursuit of your agency management path? Fret not. Whether you are an aspiring agency leader, experienced organisation leader, or even climbing the corporate ladder, everyone needs to constantly learn new things to become better at what they do. Here are three things you can do right now to be a better leader to those you serve.

1. Study people who have done it

Pick and choose at least three mentors. Are there agency leaders in your group or company that you wish to emulate? Get to know them, speak with them and ask for help. Many have walked the same path and they understand the challenges you face. And you would be surprised, just like when you were going for the “impossible” clients as an adviser, oftentimes, all you have to do is take the first step.

These mentors do not even necessarily have to be people you know. They could be CEOs of a company or thought leaders from outside of your industry. Watch their interviews, read their books and articles, understand their insights and mindset, and get to know how they run their company.

Every problem you are going through right now someone else has solved, so try to see it through someone else’s perspective. Pick mentors who have what you want, and have been where you are. And study them.


2. Talk to your team

This can be done in a three-minute one on one with anyone on your team. Take the time to get to know them, to praise them for what they have done well lately or just to show appreciation for all their help rendered in your agency building.

You can lead better if you care deeply about who you are leading, and what goals and dreams they hold. Make an effort to let your people know that they can talk to you about any concerns. Get to know them outside of the office too by going out to dinner with them and their family members.

Be humble and ask for feedback on what can be done better. You will never know who will surprise you with a brilliant idea or show you a better way to make something happen. These are the people who will be helping you grow your vision, and for that to fully happen, you need to trust them, know what makes them tick and how to motivate them when needed.


3. Be a role model

It is a lot of pressure, especially if you are starting out on your agency management journey. But how you act sets the tone for others to follow suit. Show them the hard work and effort you are putting in to grow your team and the genuine care you place in helping your team members achieve their aspirations. And in addition, if you continue to keep up your productivity as an adviser, you will have a team of advisers who will put themselves on the line to help you achieve your goals too. 

Follow the rules and policies you have set and show them how to conduct themselves in the office. When you make a mistake, take full responsibility for it. When you reach a goal, celebrate it with them. Be transparent with them on what’s happening and do not be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Show them that it’s okay to fail, as long as you learn from it. Be the best person you can be, and they’ll follow suit. If you want people who are dedicated and loyal, be dedicated and loyal to them too. Being a leader is a two-way street: you can only get what you give to others.

And even if you do not aspire to be an agency leader at this point in time, at the end of the day, leadership is not a tittle or role. Be a leader in your team even as an adviser. Keep learning and improving so when the time is ripe, you will be well prepared for the opportunity.

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