Most final expense insurance agents have asked themselves this question before: is a commission job really right for me? Although many sales jobs come with a base salary, the commission becomes very important very quickly to salespeople making this career choice. So how do you know if you will be successful at commission sales?
According to our seasoned sales staff, work ethic is the number one deciding factor between a successful final expense insurance agent and one who is struggling. Commission salespeople need to be motivated, self-disciplined, and energetic. Commission jobs can be frustrating and overwhelming, so attitude needs to affect work ethic in a positive way. When you sell for a living, you don’t have a boss or a manager hovering over you, monitoring your every minute and reminding you to stay on task. Hard workers don’t mind that at all—but it can be a problem for some people.
Successful commission salespeople have common personality traits. They are confident and positive conversationalists. They are good listeners, and spend much of their time hearing instead of talking. They are often reflective people who set goals for themselves and feel motivated to achieve for the sake of achieving. The best salespeople are patient. They know that commission sales, especially in the final expense insurance world, are not get-rich-quick jobs. Patience and perseverance lead the pack of qualities that quality salespeople have.
As my now-retired final expense sales mentor once told me, “Sales is a schoolroom from which you never graduate.” If you love to learn, if you research in your spare time, if you have an insatiable hunger for knowledge, commission sales might be right for you. The sales practice is not something that you master and move on from—it changes on a regular basis. Every client, every product, every circumstance changes your sales procedures, and the only thing that can be counted on is that sales will change with every decade as well. People who love to research new methods and try new techniques will love commission sales jobs.
Most people I’ve spoken to agree: if you’re looking for a 9-5 job that you can separate from the rest of your life, commission sales may not be right for you. Being your own boss has lots of perks if you like flexible hours and working outside the office, but final expense insurance does require a certain amount of networking, building a clientele, and calling and emailing from home. The great thing about this flexibility is it really puts your success into perspective: if you’re struggling to meet your quotas, it’s probably directly related to the amount of work you’ve put in. If you’re feeling a lot of success, you know it’s your performance that has brought those results.
Commission sales can be exciting, fulfilling, and challenging. Though many people find sales to be their career calling, it is not the right path for everyone!