On Tuesday, Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance announced the winners of the 2020 Agent for the Future Award, which included several Big “I" members. The award celebrates agencies that are leading the way into the future.
2020 will be a year remembered for many things. For the independent agent channel, it's meant uncertain market conditions and a new set of customer expectations. In response, the most forward-looking agencies have cultivated new capabilities, accelerated their digital presence and pivoted to find new ways to attract and retain customers.
Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance created the Agent for the Future™ Award to celebrate these kinds of agencies—the ones leading the way into the future.
On Tuesday, Agent for the Future announced the winners of the 2020 Agent for the Future Award, which included several Big “I" members.
RiskSOURCE Clark-Theders earned the National award title for the agency that best embodies the three critical qualities of an Agent for the Future: innovation, creativity and impact.
Majdas Touch Insurance was named the Emerging Leader, a category that celebrates an agency that took an unconventional path to building and growing their business and is early in their journey to becoming an Agent for the Future.
Eight additional winners were named across the country, based on their region. They include:
All 10 winners exemplify the three ways innovative agencies have adapted to a marketplace that looks very different than it did just a year ago:
1) Top agents were shifting to digital well before the pandemic hit. While COVID-19 impacted every business in some form, Agent for the Future Award winners were ahead of the game with digital tools and were able to continue doing business with little interruption.
Some of the winning agencies were already operating as remote, digital agencies before the pandemic hit. Others were able to quickly move their staff to remote work and continue serving customers, even if their physical office closed.
These agencies not only continued “business as usual," they found ways to continue growing. Despite the challenging marketplace, many even reported an influx of business as customers sought out agents that could meet their needs digitally.
2) Forward-thinking agencies take an omnichannel approach to communication and service. Winning agencies know that consumer expectations are rapidly changing. They take an omnichannel approach that lets clients communicate with them through whatever channels they prefer.
For example, many of the Agent for the Future Award winners have a self-service portal to allow clients to perform simple service tasks online. Most have invested in texting tools and set up automated email touchpoints with their clients throughout the year. And all use video to connect with clients for yearly policy reviews or proposals.
3) Agents for the future are always striving to evolve. Forward-looking agencies are always seeking to grow and innovate. They view digital transformation as a journey, not a destination.
These agencies know there is always room to grow. They constantly evolve their strategies to streamline operations and better serve customers, all while finding new ways to keep employees engaged and investing in the future of their business.
This year's award winners exemplify the trailblazing, innovative spirit that drives the independent agent channel forward. Congratulations to all the winners—you are truly a source of inspiration for the entire independent agent channel.
Tyler Asher is president of independent agent distribution at Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance.
Agent for the Future is a resource that Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance offers for the entire independent agent channel. Now in its third year, the Agent for the Future Award celebrates the most digitally savvy, forward-looking agencies. Learn more about the award winners.