As clients demand more from their benefit brokerages, the insurance generalist has become an endangered species. In addition to affordable health coverage, employers also expect industry-specific solutions, which requires advisers to have an intimate knowledge of their clients’ industries.

“Overall, clients are not interested in the generalist anymore,” says Jim Blaney, the health and benefits, mid-market practice lead for North America at Willis Towers Watson. To help them appeal to employers, his firm gives its producers access to industry experts, which lets them speak intelligently about different sectors. “Your brand becomes recognized in that industry,” says Blaney.

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