The R.U.T.A. Report: Be an employee, NOT a business owner

by 28 Nov 2014
Despite what you’ve heard, it’s time to treat yourself like an employee, NOT like a business owner.

Shocking? Read on.
 
Practice management consultants have been saying for years that advisors have to be more like business owners to be more successful. To them, the business owner idea makes people more productive, but I think it backfires. I sense that some advisors suppose that they now have ‘people’ to do work and they do less.
 
Look at the facts.  This practice management idea has been out there for years but are advisors more productive or less productive? The facts are clear, it’s less. CLHIA tells us that life production has fallen from 22.5 policies per advisor in 1990 to just 7.2 in 2013. Business owner-type productivity? I don’t think so.
 
Here’s a better way of thinking about your work rather than thinking you are the boss or a business owner.  Think and act like an employee. Yes, an ‘employee,’ not the owner. Change your perspective. Think and act like the best employee you can imagine working for the owner of your business. Act like the most productive employee you want for your business. Have the courage you would want your best employee to have when selling your service. Demonstrate the commitment you expect from key employees.
 
Then, advise yourself like you would advise your best employee doing your job. Coach yourself like you would coach someone who had to do what you have to do every day. Set and meet goals that matter to you as an employee and the boss. Report to yourself like you would expect a key producer to report to you.  Be accountable to the business the way you would want your employees to be accountable.
 
I know that this is just another way of thinking about being in business.  But, I think it’s just what you may need to be more productive every day. I know it helps me keep myself moving in the right direction.
 
Bosses have people. Bosses can blame others. But, you are ‘your people.’ You have no one to blame for your results but you. You also have no one else to credit with your success.  So, be the best employee you can be and your business will take care of itself – with your help.

The RUTA Report – Real Usable Tactical Advice – is provided exclusively to the Canadian Life e-newsletter each week by veteran financial industry consultant, speaker, writer and media commentator Jim Ruta. Starting at age 22, he led one of Canada’s largest insurance agencies by age 40. Jim has been featured around the world including the MDRT Main Platform and has several best-selling books to his credit. He is Managing Partner of Boston-based InforcePRO Software, a unique automatic presentation from existing policies system.