I’ve heard stories from other insurance people who, like me, got their start in insurance completely by accident. Years later they are successful insurance professionals. I can talk all day about folks I have met along the way. Today, I interviewed long time insurance producer, Michelle Van Sciver.
Michelle works as a senior underwriter for American Collectors Insurance. This year she is celebrating her nineteenth year as an insurance producer. I sat down with Michelle to talk about her career so far.
The big question first – How did you get your start in insurance?
Michelle: I began in the insurance industry in 1998 at the office of an independent broker. I was able to bring my baby daughter to work with me, so it worked out good. I started as the office assistant. I became interested in the insurance industry.
This was a small agency and, once I was licensed, I handled the personal lines portion of the business. I designed the website, handled the walk-in business, and soon became the office manager.
IA: Do you think it is a career for any young person? Have you brought anyone in?
Michelle: I have made the suggestion to many people in the insurance industry. Yes, I have brought a family member into the business. We have several college graduates at my current job who have excelled and become successful underwriters.
IA: What are three qualities insurance people should have before considering an insurance career?
Michelle: I would say they would have to have knowledge of insurance. Product knowledge is extremely important. They would have to have above excellent customer service skills. The ability to think on your feet with a smile is not easy to master. So, they would have to have a great deal of patience. Not everyone gets insurance. Being able to slow down and explain is part of the bargain.
IA: Why did you stay for nineteen years?
Michelle: I thoroughly enjoy working with people and being able to provide a level of protection to the things that they value. My clients aren’t just customers, I have made some friends along the way.
IA: If you could choose any insurance related position – what would it be?
Michelle: Claims, possibly SIU investigations. I love to research and solve problems.
IA: Thank you for helping out today and being a guinea pig for me.
Michelle: My pleasure.
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