Heath Ritenour said brokers have to change with the times and become technology-savvy to do what they do best: sell insurance. If they don’t, someone else will. Most people believe that no insurance company will survive in the post-pandemic environment, Heath noted. However, they will do so because they are making a cultural change: They are truly customer-centric. Heath Ritenour emphasized that the insurance industry must get out of the model to create a profit-and-loss statement.
When Heath Ritenour thinks of a true 21st-century model, he thinks of the Sunoco gas stations and the station owners who use automation to reduce fuel prices at the pump. The consumers don’t care about a profit-and-loss statement; they care about being able to buy gas for the lowest price in town. Your job may not change too much, but for many brokers, their business model is changing.
Whether you’re a regional broker or a nationwide broker, you need to focus on different areas. Brokers that are good at managing relationships and influencing others will thrive, while those who are great at passing on technology and marketing will find it more difficult. You’ll also ensure you’ve got the right systems in place to stay up to date with changes and requirements in the marketplace.
Insurance companies need to keep evolving. One thing Heath Ritenour fears is that the larger insurance brokerages are going to become even larger. You’ll have these conglomerate carriers that have even greater reach than the smaller ones, and they’ll be exploiting the fact that the market is consolidating at that point.
People will not go anywhere without a smart device, and we will have to accept that we are relying on the same kind of data storage strategies as we are using now. That means the entire insurance industry will be operating from a single facility, a data center, probably in a New York-area metro area. Insurance companies that can get the kind of information from smart devices faster will react faster than the old-school insurers.