For many years, I hesitated to take time away from the business to attend industry meetings and conferences. Obviously, things did not change as fast in the past as they do today. Further, as the chief rainmaker for my business, I liked staying close to my marketplace.

Suzy K. Johnson

However, in a desire to continue learning and keep up, I have recently been attending many more industry conferences. The following results have come from this:

  1. Two of my “game changer” producer/employees I met at industry meetings/conferences.
  2. I learned of our client HR onboarding and benefit enrollment technology platform at an industry conference.
  3. I met Kevin Trokey and Wendy Keneipp of Q4intelligence at industry conferences. Their prototype formats for building a sales plan and a business plan have helped our company focus on what is important so we can grow. I hope to work with them on marketing as we move forward.
  4. Most recently, I met and heard from industry coach Jack Kwicien with Daymark Advisors, who provided a brilliant idea to gather all of our clients’ adviser contacts (attorney, CPA and banker) and find commonality among our many clients so we could approach these adviser firms (many I already know and work with) to team up to hold joint client seminars and marketing events together — brilliant idea!
  5. Kwicien also offered to provide attendees with a free client written strategic plan outline, which will be helpful to use with clients as we move forward. I feel like we have been formulating a plan with our customers, but to actually document the benefits strategy in writing for each client and review annually is a powerful tool that I know our clients will welcome and value.
  6. Karen Kirkpatrick of On Your Mark Consulting recently provided a broker comparison checklist in her NAHU conference presentation that I am going to adapt to our marketing with prospective clients.

All of the above have the potential to pay off for our business in expedited growth. I recognize that sometimes I just need to get out of my own head and be receptive to learn great ideas that can lead to success from others.

I will continue to attend as many industry conferences as possible. I hope to see you there!

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Suzy K. Johnson

Suzy K. Johnson

Johnson, MBA, CEBS, RHU, CLTC, is president, owner and employee benefit specialist at Employee Benefit Advisors of the Carolinas.