American Income Life Leadership Is No Gimmick

Domenico Bertini VP of Field Operations for American Income Life

Domenico Bertini VP of Field Operations for American Income Life

One of your managers just announced she’s leaving. What do you do?

Since you are running your own business you will probably conduct an exit interview (I hope) to try to learn all the reasons for the person’s departure. And, in the case of talent, you’ll also have what’s known as a stay interview to see if there’s a way to keep this person on.

The information obtained from an exit interview is extremely valuable for discovering and correcting some of the weaknesses in your Agency. Therefore, sitting down to talk with a departing manager should be a matter of course.

You’d think that your managers are leaving for more money or better opportunities. But the question “Why are you leaving?” often reveals that there are other issues which don’t always go back to money.

When you find out those things, you should try to put a plan in place to address those issues with current managers on an individual basis.

Doing so can diminish future turnover among the rest of your management team and make you a better leader. If the departing manager is one you’re glad to be rid of, you should still hold an exit interview, because even your marginal or low performers will tell you things that you can use to light the fire in the rest of your team.

“What can we do to make you stay” is certainly a question you should ask if you don’t want to lose a good manager. At that point, you’re conducting a stay interview and doing some negotiating to see if you can reach some kind of compromise. Lose the attitude of “We don’t want you here if you don’t want to be here.”

Also, talk to managers who have been there for a while and ask what’s keeping them there. Here are some tips for retaining talented managers:

  1. Show them the money.
  2. Encourage camaraderie. Promote activities that build rapport.
  3. Offer support. Lend a hand and be willing to make concessions when managers encounter personal difficulties, such as an illness in the family. This can be just as effective as money in promoting loyalty.
  4. Provide praise. Simple actions, such as writing a thank-you note can go a long way toward enhancing morale.
  5. Give them a break when they go the extra mile. Everyone needs time to recharge to perform at his or her best.

In the end it’s all about how strong of a management team you build that will determine how strong of a sales force you’ll have. Leadership is no gimmick!!

About Mark Ting

Mark Ting is a Staff Writer at Torchmark Corporation, writing about American Income Life and National Income Life Insurance Companies. Google+

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