Benchmark Business Group

Asking Powerful Questions

November 16, 2021

How well does your team ask powerful questions?

´╗┐Within the financial services industry it’s easy to fall into the trap of becoming an order taker instead of being a trusted advisor. If your team has the right information, they can get your clients quotes and seemingly do a great job, while passing over the opportunity to add real value.

It’s a trap we see many exceptional agencies fall into because they are busy, or often because team members are not sure what to ask or say. When an agency is “too-busy” it’s hard to stop and ask powerful questions because there’s another person waiting, another quote to finish, and even well-meaning team members can skip over asking the questions that should be asked. These questions include topics surrounding policy-limits, the need for umbrellas, cross-selling opportunities, and more. And while there’s always time to ask questions, your team members are less likely to ask if they don’t have the right training.

The problem is that most of your prospects and clients don’t truly understand the risks and opportunities that your agency could help them with. In other words, they don’t know what they don’t know. So, until something happens and it’s too late to put a policy in place, your clients and your business might not realize that there’s a potential issue.

This week, we’re challenging your agency to stop and discuss if you’re truly in the position of being a trusted advisor or has your agency started to become an order taker? Is your team trained to see and hear when questions should be asked? Do they know what to ask/do/say if a client/prospect:

  • Only has state limits on their car insurance?
  • Just had a new baby or grandbaby?
  • Is getting married?
  • Bought a house?
  • Has an expensive hobby?
  • Has a collection they take pride in?
  • Has built up their assets?
  • Owns a business?
  • Wants to insure their house at a lower limit?
  • Has a security system at their house?
  • Is building a new house?
  • Works a dangerous job?

The list above is just a start. There are many other life events, situations, and requests that your team needs to be trained to listen for and trained to act on once they are heard. It’s the difference between being an order taker and a trusted advisor. And often the conversation is opened up by asking a powerful question. A question that is short, simple, and gets the client/prospect to think differently.

Powerful Questions such as:

  • Tell me how your family would be impacted if….
  • What would happen if?
  • Have you considered…
  • Tell me more about…

Your team can listen in a caring way that clients/prospects appreciate, but still be order takers. Listening and asking powerful questions is a different way of interacting with your clients/prospects. It’s about creating more conversation. It’s taking the time to educate clients about possible risks and opportunities. It’s a proactive conversation that most clients/prospects don’t even know that they need.

The real question is, which type of agency do you want to design?

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