Choosing an AR network that will match you up with the right Appointed Representative principal for your ambitions, and suit your individual needs as a self-employed broker, can be a tough decision.
You need to be with an AR network that will stretch you and encourage you to achieve your business goals, but also provide the framework of support that will give you the mentoring and occasional pep talk that every entrepreneur needs when they encounter a few obstacles whilst building up their own insurance brokerage.
On the other hand, you need an AR network that has done a lot of the hard slog and groundwork for you and which will continue to give you the benefits of its investment in systems and management teams going forward. One that leaves you free to sell, network and bring in your own insurance clients and business, should be the one you have your sights on.
To help you judge whether Gauntlet’s AR network is right for you, here are 10 reasons to join Gauntlet Enterprise:
1. CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT
Gauntlet’s AR model is a carefully honed one. We’ve tested some elements along the way and learned from our experience. We’ve also added new elements to the Appointed Representative model as we’ve gone along, in the spirit of continual improvement. We listen to our ARs and, if we hear that something could work better for them, we’ll consider it and implement it, if we think it works for all. We are a responsive AR network, not
one that is set in stone.
2. SPEEDY INSURANCE BROKERAGE SET-UP
We know that, once you’ve made the decision to cease being a salaried insurance account executive and become a self-employed insurance broker, you want to get your new insurance business up and running as fast as possible. We can do this for you, literally within just a few weeks, from a starting point of no business name or branding, to new website and launch press release. Whilst you may be under covenant, you can at least start working on your business plan, discovering where your networking groups and potential new clients can be found and getting out and talking to people, knowing they can check you out online once you’ve left their office.
Increasingly, clients are looking for their suppliers to have a better customer focus – one based on professionalism, customer-centricity and competence. Gauntlet has built a reputation second to none in its sector and sets its bar high. It has retained an integrity within its Appointed Representative network, by offering AR opportunities to only the best of the best and, as importantly, to those willing to work hard to put the effort in and optimise the benefits emanating from the model.
We do lose ARs, but we tend to lose those who did not put in the hard yards to make the model tick, or who found it hard to live up to our service delivery and general business expectations. What should be noted, however, is that we also attract top quality ARs from other networks, who have realised their mistake and want to be part of a more robust and professional set- up that is geared up to helping them be as successful as possible. It’s not an easy ride and that’s not right for everyone. It may, however, be exactly right for you, depending on the degree of your ambition. We have Chartered Broker status for a reason and we do not compromise on our standards. If you can live up to our expectations, you will probably go a long way towards achieving your income and lifestyle goals.
Insurance and financial services compliance is a necessary evil and we know that red tape can throttle a fledgling business. For this reason, we take much of the compliance and reporting out of your hands and have also developed tools and systems that make it easy for you to comply, without eating into your sales or client time. This is a godsend for most of our ARs.
Getting precisely what you want when it comes to technological innovations and solutions takes time and we have patiently worked, over the past few years, to develop what will be an industry-leading IT system that will transform your new brokerage business and make it easy for you to assess where your sales are coming from and how you could be better realising your sales potential. Our current system is already far better than others, but we wanted to be further ahead of the game, not chasing it. We have invested considerable amounts in the IT development, but it will be a game-changer that takes Gauntlet Group to the next level and well worth the time, investment and effort of both our developers and our internal team. Now is the time to come on board, as we prepare to launch it in spring 2019, after robust ‘road-testing’.
6. BROKING EXPERTISE
We have in-house broking expertise that can only be attained by those who have the right contacts, in the right places. We also enjoy an earned right to request or secure industry-leading schemes, due to our commitment to giving insurers volume but quality business, and not wasting insurers’ time by asking them to consider hundreds of risks from customers who are not truly interested in what they have to offer. This approach has given Gauntlet access to some of the very best schemes and policies available, from across the whole of the market. Such access is the Holy Grail for many brokers, so why wouldn’t a new brokerage want to be able to tap into this, place business and often offer clients the best cover available in the market?
Gauntlet has acquired an industry reputation, and earned the respect of the media, based on its ethical approach to its business. There are no skeletons in the cupboard and no PR crisis waiting to be unveiled. If you work with Gauntlet, you are working with a business and Appointed Representative principal, that has PRINCIPLED running through it top to bottom, like words impressed in a stick of rock. In a world of fake news and mistrust, such an ethical stance ticks the boxes of consumers. It should also be ticking yours.
We have shaped our internal team in such a way as to provide our ARs with not just an in-house broker, but also a mentor who can help them see the wood from the trees – something that is not always easy to do when establishing your own brokerage and seeking to work independently, on a self-employed insurance broker basis, for the first time. Our mentoring helps new ARs get their focus right and can mean the difference between a new insurance brokerage’s success and its failure.
9. MONEY HANDLING
Gauntlet’s ARs do not have to worry about mastering accounting systems, managing credit control or handling money, as our back-office team do most of that for our Appointed Representatives. Again, this leaves our ARs free to do what every new business must do as a number one priority – find new clients. By taking all of the non-core functions out of our ARs’ daily work schedules, we also free them up to do that other fundamentally important thing – retaining clients. This helps our ARs work towards their goals and their ultimate bucket- list, by addressing the leaky bucket syndrome that can scupper all businesses – letting business enter one door, only to exit via another door a year or two later, due to customer dissatisfaction.
10. FLEXIBILITY AND EXIT PLANS
Gauntlet can tailor its model to work with those who have particular insurance expertise that offers added- value to Gauntlet Group, so it is not a one-size-fits-all AR contract that is on offer, but one that can have added attractiveness and incentives built into it, for the right AR. Similarly, Gauntlet Group can offer exit route options to ARs wishing to sell-on their business, once they have achieved their income or lifestyle goals and are ready to enjoy the fruits of their labours. This is hugely advantageous for those hard-working, highly respected brokers who have something special to bring to the table.
If you have the drive, determination, work ethic and principles to be part of Gauntlet’s AR network and want to build a solid, profitable and thriving insurance brokerage, we would like to hear from you.
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