My Vision for Insurors in 2017
Let me begin by saying what an honor it is to serve as the President of this great Association. I am humbled that I was elected and I am proud to follow in my father's footsteps, as he served as President in 1992. I promise to work hard to make sure I uphold the legacy and reputation of this Association.
This year is well underway and I already feel like it is flying by. Since my swearing-in at the 2016 Annual Convention, I have spent a lot of time talking with your Insurors Board and staff. In fact, as I write this we have just completed our first Board meeting of 2017, and I am very excited for what's to come. Let me share a few of the things that I am focusing on for 2017.
Agency Growth Conference
This will be the fourth edition of our Agency Growth Conference, a Spring event built around education, technology, sales, marketing and best practices. I am excited that we are bringing the event to East Tennessee for the first time, as it will be held March 8-9 at the Hilton in downtown Knoxville. Our staff has put together a great lineup of sessions and speakers for this event, and I hope you will join us. Check out the details or register now at insurors.org.
InsurPACTN and Insurpac National
Although we continue to receive a good response on donations for our State and National political action committees, I think we need to do more. Why? Because the amount of money it takes to make a difference continues to increase, and there are issues in front of us that are of great concern.
The funding of InsurPACTN helped us make a difference in our fight with the Opt-Out workers' comp bill, and that issue may return. We also have uncertainty with the ACA and agent compensation on both the State and National levels, as well as issues like Flood insurance, Federal regulation, the "Cadillac: Tax and more. Please consider a new donation or an increased donation so that our Association has the backing it needs to represent our interests. I'd like us to hit a new goal of $75,000 for 2017.
Education and Development
One of the hallmarks of Insurors of Tennessee has always been education. From the days of Chuck Bidek teaching classes across the state to the partnership with National Alliance to our entry into the Agents and Brokers Education Network (ABEN), we have tried to stay at the forefront of industry education. Now I think it may be time to go further.
There are a million ways for industry professionals to get "cheap CE" online or in person. However, a lot of that CE is not providing the education our members need and our clients deserve. We are looking at opportunities to both increase our offerings and improve on what is out there. Stay tuned on this issue.
Young Agents and New Talent
I continue to think the Young Agents program is critical to the future success of our industry. I also believe that finding talent and developing new employees is an issue that we must take the lead on. You've heard all the statistics on the "aging industry," and now we are seeing that come to fruition as more and more of our agency principals are retiring, perpetuating or selling their agencies.
We all know how hard it is to find new employees and bring in new talent. We cannot assume this issue will resolve itself. Insurors is working with the Insurance program at Middle Tennessee State University and looking at other avenues to generate new talent. Once we find new employees we must commit to giving them the training and resources they need. I truly believe that Insurors should be one of those resources, and that Young Agents should be one area of involvement.
Thank you again for the honor of serving as your Insurors President. I am here to represent our members, so please help me help you.