Employee Benefit Adviser recently shared a link that piqued my interest.

This link takes you to a slide show that provides the following set-up:

6 reasons why it's great to be an independent broker
I talked with advisers like you across the nation and here's how they answered the question, "Why is it great to be an independent broker or adviser?"

The answers were more or less grouped around a similar idea:

Freedom to choose from a wide array of products from a variety of carriers so they could best help their clients by meeting their needs and having an impact on the business.

What struck me as interesting about this is that when it comes down to it, all of these brokers want to be able to have a positive influence on their clients' businesses. And they value that they have access to a wide variety of options with which to do so. I think the answers these brokers gave are very representative of independent insurance brokers and advisers. When we ask brokers this question, we usually hear very similar answers.

The impression I got reading through the slide show is that some of them were possibly comparing themselves to captive brokers where they wouldn't have the variety of choices to meet the client needs in such a flexible way. I completely see the attraction to that, and really, this is a great position from which to expand your comparative and your business offerings.

So, what if we take that idea of variety another step further?

What if they looked at client needs beyond the scope of the insurance needs they have?

What if they used other types of products and services altogether to meet client needs?

What if they thought of themselves as independent advisers who helped their clients manage risk or manage employees and all the complexities and nuances these areas include?

If you're helping clients manage their risk and their employees, it needn't be (and shouldn't be) limited to only insurance products. So the question then becomes, "How else can you help businesses better manage the nuances and complexitieis of risk and employees with things other than insurance products?"

What I'd like to do is challenge you – our readers – to think about this interally and come up with ideas that would expand your value proposition and enhance and expand the influce you are able to have on your client businesses.

When you can take your independent business and make it independent from complete reliance on another company's products, then you've got even more to be grateful for when you think about being an independent broker or adviser.


Photo by Kurhan