Dynamic Insurance Brokers was the brain child of two insurance agents who decided to pool their resources and experience with the vision of being the largest general line insurance firm in Western Canada. They each had thriving agencies with a core of great employees around whom they planned to form the nucleus of the growing business. Success was rapid and within 18 months the firm had agents and offices in 12 of the major Western Canadian population centers with strongly increasing sales.
At that peak, when the future looked as bright as a star, there were nagging problems that kept coming back to slow down the continued growth trajectory. Sales began to plateau, renewals started to drop off. Issues of moral, staff turnover, customer complaints and general staff dissatisfaction became more frequent and more serious.
The partners spent six months talking to employees, developing new recruitment practices, as well as sending employees to sales training courses and customer service programs. Just after the 4th anniversary event all the employees at one branch resigned, on the same day, and there seemed to be some feedback that there was mounting dissatisfaction at other locations. It appeared that the hard work and push for growth was coming to a sudden and unfortunate end.
Canadian Training Partners were called in to consult on the issues, to reverse the trends, and reestablish the growth dynamics of the organization. CTP spent considerable time interviewing the management team, the top sales agents, the office staff, and (with permission from the partners) they reached out to some of the employees who had resigned during the previous six months.
The feedback identified a management team that was inexperienced, out of touch with the needs of employees, with poor communication skills, and generally poor understanding of how to encourage and work with staff. CTP provided several recommendations to help Dynamic improve their HR practices and management structure to flatten the organization and create a more aggressive culture of ownership and responsibility by the managers and employees. One of the strongest contributors to the malaise at Dynamic was the lack of experience and preparation the management/supervisor group had in the art of leadership and management. In most instances the managers had been great sales agents and were nice people who were often promoted simply because they were the longest serving employee in the location, but they did not have the knowledge, skills, or training to assume the management/supervisory roles they were asked to fill
Based on the recommendations made by CTP, Dynamic brought in a professional HR organization that helped restructure many of their processes and management structures. They also worked with CTP to develop and implement a training program for all levels of supervisor and manager.
The objective of the training program was to create a consistent employee/manager interface designed to help employees become great; to excel at their job, see a future within the organization, and to be a contributing partner in the continued growth of Dynamic Insurance Brokers.
The results of the changes and the training initiative allowed Dynamic to stabilize their organizational structure, so it was positioned for rapid growth, create a positive employee centric culture, develop a planned approach to training and development of managers, and create an organization that once again attracted people to seek employment at the firm.
When CTP did a follow up 1 year after the training program was completed Dynamic reported that they were once again moving forward, although more slowly, and had added two offices to their operation. They also reported that staff satisfaction had greatly increased, and they were successful in attracting some new, high profile talent to the organization which was allowing them to consider expanding into the other half of Canada.
The solution for this organization, 5 specific skills development courses for the management team, was implemented and branded as the:
Dynamic Insurance Brokers Leadership Academy
- Coaching and Mentoring
- Performance Management
- Employee Motivation
- Delivering Constructive Criticism
- Team Building for Managers
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