Have you ever seen the film “Shallow Hal” starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Jack Black? You’re probably wondering what that has to do with insurance sales.
In the Hollywood film, Hal is portrayed as a guy who only recognizes the outer beauty of a woman. Hal is put into a hypnotic trance where he can only see the inner beauty of all people. While under this trance, he meets a tremendously overweight woman; yet; he can only see her for her inner beauty. In his eyes, she appears outwardly as a supermodel. He finds love and professional success because of this spell of seeing inner beauty. His best friend, selfishly concerned for Hal, lifts the hypnotic state by saying a secret phrase. Suddenly, all the inner beauty he saw within people were now blinded by his former perspective of only valuing the outer visual shell. You must watch the movie to learn how it works out; I won’t spoil it.
Our story is the very opposite. We should condition our minds to see inside our client’s proverbial outer shell, exactly opposite of Shallow Hal and use this vision to recognize the client’s needs that sometimes are hidden from sight. We must recognize things that could tragically devastate the beautiful outer appearance of our clients and not give up probing, as a surgeon trying to fully remove a life-threatening cancer. While we can’t eliminate all the threats; we can, however, provide a barrier of insulation around the potential hazards. “When” tragedy does show its ugly head, we have taken steps to prepare and protect against the consequences and fallout. Our duty is to keep that threat from causing financial destruction in the lives of our clients.
The true mark of a great salesperson is the ability to see the potential risks and effects before it happens. These same salespersons are “measured” by their ability to insulate their clients. It’s your ability to empathize PERIOD. If you do not empathize with your clients, you are purposely holding back the cure to their disease. You can be compared to a doctor that goes in to perform cosmetic surgery, seeing a tumorous cancer, and chooses to ignore it. You could simply ask a few questions and, if needed, bring in a specialist. Perhaps you sell them Property and Casualty, and they are now a trusted client. You spend an hour meeting them, getting to know them; yet, you never ask a few simple questions to see if they are properly covered. Is it right to perform cosmetic surgery and leave the tumor ignored? Of course, not! So why then is it o.k. for us to ignore protecting a client? It’s not o.k.
In another scene, Hal see’s the most beautiful young girl in the hospital, picks her up and says, “I will never put you down, you are so beautiful.” Later, when the hypnotic trance is lifted, he revisits the hospital and does not even recognize the girl he once gave so much attention to. In reality, she was a burn victim with 90% of her face damaged from a fire. All he could see was her inner beauty. This is the moment he realized the mistakes in his previous views. WE MUST SEE THE OPPOSITE OF HAL. Right here is where you must start seeing the ugliness many cannot see or perhaps chose to ignore. We have beautiful clients with beautiful families. We must see the burn victim inside. We should see the ugliness of what “could” happen in their lives. Many times, clients are simply not aware of the need they have for our professionalism. And this is frustrating sometimes, I know. But if you believe in yourself and believe in your products, you will make a difference in your client’s lives.
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