President Reagan once remarked, “Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.” That tongue-in-cheek statement may underscore the dissatisfaction and need for change expressed by the voters two weeks ago. The founders didn’t foresee a full-time legislature or – worse yet – career politicians.
Too often, the driving force of permanent politicians is their nearly pathological need to be re-elected. That imperative outweighs all other factors – frequently including their desire or willingness to listen to constituents. When that happens, they go into “transactional” mode, just like that “other” profession.
Thirty-five members of the House and four new senators have no political experience. The lamestream media is aghast at this development. They wonder how anything will get done with these political rubes in the mix. If being an amateur means retaining the ability and desire to listen to their constituents, I suspect we’ll do just fine.
In our industry, the best advisors and carriers listen much more than they speak. Years ago, a New England insurance company brought together a group of their field people. They were tasked with being the driving force behind the development of a new and revolutionary disability insurance contract. The field people in turn sought input from their most prolific advisors. Working together with the home office, they created a contract that mirrored the needs-based approach, so many of us learned as the bedrock of our sales process.