Some Suggestions For NAIFA From A 32-Year Producer

To The Editor:

As a 32-year life agent and now more comprehensive financial services sales representative, I agree with Jack Bobos desire to see the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors improve, as expressed in his May 26 column, “Time For A Fresh Start.”

After being a member for 30 years, I am no longer as I have retired partially, and the expense is simply beyond what I can justify. Also, NAIFA is properly aiming to help the newer agent, so most of the meetings are of little to no value for me.

I have remained a member of the Society of Financial Service Professionals: a better content match for my needs, but missing the industry support, especially the PAC (to which I have contributed over $1,500).

It seems to me that NAIFA could have an emeritus (or similar) membership category with a greatly reduced membership fee that would include the monthly magazine, ability to attend meetings that are of value for a per-attendance charge, and access to the Web site and other features that either do not add to the associations costs or are covered by costs.

This would enhance the number of people receiving the various appeals, would give the association more political clout by adding to the headcount when making presentations and make advertising more attractive to those using the association. It would probably increase the PAC contributions some, too.

This alone is not an elixir to solve all the problems but might be a part of the solution.

I want to thank Jack for his many years of providing insightful commentary on topics of interest and importance to our industry.

Robert S. (Bob) Niccolls, CLU, ChFC


To The Editor:

Re: Jack Bobos May 12 column, “Education Comes In Many Forms.”

Like Mr. Bobo, much of my life insurance education over the past 40-45 years has come not only from the association meetings but also from the volunteerism with the association. We now have fewer career managers to encourage fewer career agents to attend fewer associations that have less association volunteerism.

Mr. Bobo stated that almost everything comes with a price…pay me now or pay me later! This wilting vine of the career agent system needs cultivating from the top!

We need more “Financial Services Corporations” with their new fancy logos to step back and take another look at the life insurance sales system. We need more “Financial Services” people to say, “Hey, life insurance really is a great product! Just look at how our annuity sales have increased since the market went in the toilet! And boy, people are living longer and our life product portfolio is showing increased profits.”

Now, even the brokerage houses are advertising the value of guaranteed principal!

Who knows, maybe this education we are talking about should begin at the top!

Harold J. Jones, CLU, ChFC, CFP
Past President, NAIFA-GNO
New Orleans, La.


Reproduced from National Underwriter Edition, July 7, 2003. Copyright 2003 by The National Underwriter Company in the serial publication. All rights reserved. Copyright in this article as an independent work may be held by the author.