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Insurance Agent Career

Considering a career as an Insurance Agent? Find out all you need to know to decide whether this career is right for you.

What does an Insurance Agent do?

The role of an Insurance Agent is to provide clients with insurance options that suit their needs. Insurance Agent clients may be looking for various types of insurance such as property and casualty, life, health, disability and long-term care.

Some Insurance Agents specialize in one area of insurance. For example, Insurance Agents specializing in property and casualty will only sell insurance products that protect individuals and businesses from financial loss from vehicle accidents, fire, hurricanes, etc. However, most Insurance Agents are now finding cross-selling clients increases their ability to generate revenue dramatically.

The idea behind the success of Insurance Agents cross-selling, is the clients are already in a frame of mind to listen to the benefits of insurance products when they walk in the door. This is a great opportunity for Insurance Agents to propose other products that provide financial stability.

Insurance Agents have been known to offer such services as retirement planning, estate planning and setting up pension plans. Many are earning their license to sell mutual funds and various other types of securities.

During the course of an average day, you will prepare reports and quotes for clients, help policy holders file claims, discuss new options for your clients and actively seek out new clients. As an Insurance Agent, you will need a few skills to be successful. Since much of your time is spent with clients selling insurance products, you will need strong skills in sales.

Strong sales skills in the insurance business requires that you have an indepth knowledge of the products you are selling as well as their effect on individuals financial status. This is why hardworking individuals who have the ability to perform necessary research and who have a strong background in business or finance do well selling insurance.

Secondly, you will need strong interpersonal skills in the office setting. Many beginning agents do well initially due to veteran agents' assistance. It helps immensely to be able to solicit the friendship of experienced insurance agents when becoming established in the industry.

How to Become an Insurance Agent?

Educational requirements may vary slightly depending on the company, the area you wish to work and your previous work experience.

For most Insurance Agent careers, the minimum educational requirement is the completion of a Bachelor's degree. However, there are some organizations who hire individuals with an Associate's degree in Business or a related field.

Beyond a quality education and the development of skills necessary to succeed as an Insurance Agent, you will need to learn where to gain experience by finding career opportunities.

You will find Insurance Agent career opportunities by contacting a local recruiter or by contacting hiring firms directly. You may find Insurance Agent openings under newspaper or online classifieds (Craigslist or Monster.com).

What is an Insurance Agent's Salary?

As an Insurance Agent, your salary can vary significantly depending on your level of experience, your level of acquired education and size of the company you work for.

The median salary* for an Insurance Agent is $43,900.

The top 10% of Insurance Agents are pulling in an average of $115,100.

In order to boost yourself to this level of success, you will need to perform highly, develop years of experience at a respectable company and lastly, earn yourself an advanced degree.

Request information from some of the top online schools in the United States. Online schools are becoming more popular for the working professional and are already highly respected in the business arena.

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* Source: The Bureau of Labor and Statistics for 2006

How does the future look for an Insurance Agent?

Job growth in the Insurance industry is projected to be slightly below average. The reason for this is thought to be the increasing effect of technology on insurance sales efficiency. Many clients seeking insurance options are able to go directly to websites in order to find the options they are looking for. This might be decreasing the need for Insurance Agent's time.

However, those Insurance Agents who are branching out into other services and cross-selling their clients are still looking to make a very good living.

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