What is the biggest challenge your agency faced in the past year?
The biggest challenges for KLT Insurance this first year has been learning to service policies without the trusted account manager that I had worked with the past five years. I did not realize how much I utilized her and how much she had done to support me. Moving forward, I need to get to the point where I can hire a great account manager to help with the customer service. The other challenge has been that everything falls on me as an agency owner. I have always been good at generating business and working with my clients but never had to worry about accounting, social media, marketing budgets, and constantly updating the plan to move forward while making sure all of the bills are paid for the office. It has been a great learning experience and thankful I have had the time to learn this year before we expand next year.
Do you have a new tip or best practice you have learned and want to share?
As a new independent insurance agency trying to grow during a global pandemic, the most important best practice has been to develop a strong network of referral partners. Considering the way that life has changed, understanding which types of businesses continue to remain viable and then developing relationships with referral partners that can drive new business opportunities was critical. For example, with the strong housing market, our relationship with mortgage brokers was most valuable. And in these times, building those relationships required more creative use of digital resources, like using video conferencing as an example.
Why are you an SIA of Northern Ohio member?
I am an SIA of Northern Ohio member mostly because I trusted another agency owner’s advice when I was first thinking of opening my own agency. T.J. Worsencroft of Navigate Risk Advisors, a member agency for a few years, took the time to sit with me and help me understand the benefits of working with SIA of Northern Ohio and the great support that he received when opening his agency. I am very thankful for all of the guidance and support I have received over this first year of having my own agency.
What makes your agency unique?
My agency is unique because of our core values: Insurance for what is important to you. Our priority is helping our customers find the best coverage to protect what matters most in life. KLT Insurance provides personal service, takes time to explain coverages, and is available to our clients when they need us most. We let our clients know that we love what we do, and we want to be the one they KNOW LIKE and TRUST.
What causes does your agency actively support?
KLT Insurance is heavily involved in the community of North Ridgeville. After just opening the office earlier in the year, we committed to being a drop-off location for the annual Toy Drive to Support Community Care in North Ridgeville.