Customer Service Basics


Did you ever notice that when you pick up the phone to make a doctor’s appointment, call your insurance company, call a retail store or just about any company, you almost always get some kind of automated system? The message often states that “We are busy taking care of another customer, but your call is important to us, and we will be with you as soon as possible. If you don’t wish to wait, we can call you back. Press one for a call-back or press two to stay on the line.”

Many times this turns into phone tag. Now … Read the rest

What It Takes to Be a Successful Sales Representative and Business Entrepreneur


Recently I was reading the article in Agency Sales magazine entitled, “The Talk Part 2,” by Russ Sorrells. After reading the article, not only did I strongly agree with what I read, but I wanted to share personal experiences of how exercise, good nutrition, and mental health play such an important role in being a successful business entrepreneur. Additionally, after working 23 years in business operations for eight different companies, and operating L.S. Wilson & Associates, Inc., for 25 years this September, I wanted to share what personality traits I feel make a good sales representative.

What personality traits make … Read the rest

What Makes a Great Principal?


I recently saw the movie Elvis, the story about the rise and fall of Elvis Presley. There is a man in the movie by the name of Tom Parker (“The Colonel”), played by Tom Hanks. The Colonel latched on to Elvis because he could see early on how talented he was. The Colonel, of course, had ulterior motives for connecting with Elvis, but I won’t tell you what those were in case you want to see the movie yourself. The Colonel took 50 percent of all the money that Elvis made. Needless to say, he “used Elvis.” As I Read the rest

MANA Helps Smooth the Road for Agencies


Recently I was going through some older business records to see what I could discard. There were copies of commission checks from two principals that I no longer represent.

Principal One terminated me and I terminated with Principal Two. Principal One informed me that I was not bringing in enough new business. This was when the market crashed in 2008. Prior to the market crash everything appeared to be fine. I was never told that I was not performing and there was concern on the principal’s behalf regarding the need to develop new customers. On the contrary, I was actually … Read the rest

The Importance of a Contract


A fellow sales representative on the West Coast, who happens to sell for the same principal that I do, recently phoned to let me know that the company management wanted to know from her, why I did not want to renew my contract. My initial response to her was “Why are they asking you, and not me?” I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised this took place given everything that has happened over the past two years.

This exchange occurred after my best principal — the one who inquired about the contract, and the one I made the most money … Read the rest