You’re Either Growing or Dying — A Broker’s Guide to Success

Imagine if you could grow your brokerage by 25% annually — instead of 5% or 10%.

Small changes to your business can have a meaningful impact on year-over-year growth which when compounded can change the trajectory of both an individual’s or organization’s success.

With anything you try to accomplish in life, you are either climbing up the hill (hard work but exhilarating) or coming down the other side (relaxing at first but can also become stressful). Very little time is spent at the summit enjoying the view.

This is not to say you don’t want to enjoy that view. The industry just changes so fast that if you sit for more than a few moments, you can start sliding down the hill involuntarily.

Contacts at clients change jobs or retire. Competition bangs on our customers’ doors. Your employees lose their edge and leave if they feel stagnation in the company. The market offers new solutions. The list goes on.

Here’s the reality. You are reselling your value proposition almost every day both internally and to the external market. Or, at least, you should be.

Your ability to grow your brokerage likely hinges on four key factors:

  1. Attracting and retaining the right employees
  2. Using technology to differentiate your firm
  3. Retaining the at-risk clients
  4. Gaining efficiency to reduce expenses and free up time to focus more on strategy

Attract and Retain the Right Employees

Even the best strategy is hard to execute with the wrong people. Yet, keeping the right employees relies on showing them a clear vision for the firm’s success … one that is big enough for employees to see their own potential for success and growth.

A few strategies to building the right team include:

  • Utilizing role plays in the interview process and as part of the promotion process to simulate the real world environment as closely as possible. This will increase the quality of your team and cut down on turnover.
  • Clearly explaining your growth plans to employees and letting them know specifically how they can impact success.
  • Building competency maps, especially at lower to mid-levels in the organization. This not only helps less experienced employees fast-track their growth but provides a clear outline that enables managers to train employees and offload tactical work.

And perhaps most importantly, make sure your employees embrace change.

Commit to breaking old habits and creating excitement around cutting-edge strategies to grow your client base and your employees’ skill sets.

While change can seem difficult, sticking with doing things the way they have always been done leads to decline. Organizations stuck in the past are often characterized by long-term employees counting down their days and newer employees punching the clock.

If you want hungry employees looking to make their mark (especially those in the Millenial or GenZ generations), employees need to be open to innovating at all levels.


Leverage Technology to Win a Higher Percentage of New Business

Winning creates excitement and provides the fuel to enable organizations and employees to grow.

Commit to developing or learning about new approaches to set yourself apart from everyone else. If you look at other industries, companies that have a digital strategy are growing 30% faster than their competitors.

Stand out by providing prospects with strategic insights focused on their data, goals, and needs, rather than just pitching your capabilities and firms’ resources.

Leverage digital solutions throughout the prospecting process to provide:

  • A dynamic employer experience that differentiates you from competitors
  • Innovative marketplace solutions that require deeper explanations but provide greater value
  • Expanded benefit offerings to solve expanding employee needs

To learn more about how to grow your business faster, check out 5 Ways to Impress Prospects and Increase Your Closing Ratios by 20%+


Retain At-Risk Clients

Most brokerage firms can identify the 10% – 20% of customers who are at risk of going elsewhere.

To reduce churn, re-engage at-risk customers with a proactive strategy to help better understand their needs and win their confidence.

Proactively set a meeting with at-risk clients to understand their current business needs, and how their benefit goals can support those needs. Analyze their historical data and come armed with three to four new observations along with potential opportunities to improve their current programs, costs, administration, etc.

Review previous goals you established and test to see if they are still valid, suggesting refinements where appropriate. Share new capabilities or services your firm can offer that they may not be aware of.

Leverage this opportunity to reset the dynamic by demonstrating to your customer that you clearly understand their needs and are evolving to deliver more value to their organization.

At every step, you are reselling and strengthening your relationship by providing consistent value and innovative ideas.

For additional strategies and tactics, check out How Can You Stop Clients From Changing Benefits Brokers in Q1?

Gain Efficiency to Reduce Expenses and Free Up Time to Focus More on Strategy

Often, getting your presentation or analysis completed is a victory in and of itself. However, with increased competition, manual processes waste time you could be spending retaining clients, providing strategic guidance to customers, or working on the three bullets above.

Instead of relying on “the way things have always been,” commit to building systems and processes that make it easier to shine … rather than just get the job done

The right systems will help your existing team operate more efficiently and make it easier to onboard and leverage lower cost employees, reducing overall spend.

The combination of additional time and support provides an added benefit by enabling your existing talent the opportunity to grow and take on new challenges.

Enabling employees to advance means your organization will have more strategic thinkers and will rely less on a few key senior management personnel, thought leaders, or domain experts to ensure your customers are getting your organization’s best thinking at all times.

Leveraging 30 years as employee benefits brokers, the Vertical Fox dynamic benefits brokerage platform enables brokers to differentiate their firms to win new business, create stickier client relationships and create efficiencies and processes that enable your best employees to see a path for growth!

Reach out to schedule a meeting and learn more.



Differentiate your brokerage and grow your business faster.

Vertical Fox’s dynamic benefits management software can help you:

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