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Bringing Your New Employees Up To Speed

The insurance train just keeps on rolling, no matter what is happening on the internal staffing side of your business. If you've just lost an employee and you need to hire, it can be hard to add employee training to your already packed schedule. How can you bring your new employees up to speed while maintaining your usual business schedule? 

Learn More About Your Employee

If you've hired a new employee, that person likely has a lot of qualifications for the job. However, she may not have all of the qualifications you need or know how you do things at your insurance agency. Read over your employee's resume and ask your new employee about gaps and needs for training, so that you can customize your training as much as possible. When time is short, you don't want to retrain an employee who already knows how to do key aspects of your business.

Know Your Training Process 

Before you begin training someone new, go through the process of training yourself so that you know what to do. This will save you from scrambling trying to find resources as you train your new employee. Entrepreneur suggests that "going through it yourself from the perspective of a new hire can help." Preparing your training in advance allows you to: 

  • Specifically, address questions that new employees may have 

  • Collect training resources 

  • Solicit feedback from other employees 

Give a Primer on Your Business Culture 

One of the most important elements of your business is your business culture. It determines how you value and communicate with your clients and what you put first every business day. Give your new employees a sense of your mission and values and talk about how this works in everyday business life.

Get Your Employees Up to Date on Problems or Focus Areas 

Make sure that your employees have a handle on your insurance office's breaking news. Whether you have a few clients that require extra focus or you are implementing a new computer system, your new employees are going to be immersed in these issues sooner rather than later. Give them some background information so that they feel more prepared when they jump into the fray.

Create Notes

As you prepare for and move through the training process, take notes and encourage your new employee to do so as well. Notes allow your employee to refer to these notes once the training is complete. When you go out of the office, you want to know that your new administrator knows how to lock up for the day – or that your insurance agents know how to manage a crisis on the phone.

Consider adding some of your notes to online training resources as well. According to Better Team, "Technology enables everyone to learn on the go. Tiny screens everywhere can now become powerful training devices."  Webinars and ebooks become tools for learning, no matter where your employees are located.

Set Up Mentorship Relationships 

New employees don't just get trained once. They get training many different times by many different people. As you try to get a new employee up to speed quickly, consciously set that employee up with others who can answer specific questions so that the employee doesn't need to feel self-conscious or wait until you are available. Create future training opportunities for your employees as well, so that they know when they'll receive additional information or skills. 

At American Agents Alliance, we're here to support you during business transitions. Whether you're posting business jobs or need advice about hiring, our community of independent insurance agencies can help. Contact us today and learn more about our membership benefits.

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