As a staunch supporter of the independent agency channel and someone who is proud to serve the IIABA, I am inspired when I see agents and other professionals banding together to help one another become more successful. Recently, I had the opportunity to witness an extraordinary example of this while attending the inaugural PRMA Summit in Chicago.
The Private Risk Management Association (PRMA) is an independent, not-for-profit “community of collaboration” that is dedicated to growing the high-net-worth (aka, private client) personal risk management niche through education, awareness and advocacy. The group was started by veterans in the niche who recognized that a significant percentage of wealthy Americans do not have comprehensive risk management programs in place that reflect their unique needs and significant assets.
Launched in March of this year, PRMA has already attracted nearly 350 members from across the United States, representing disciplines that include insurance (carriers & independent agents), wealth management, fine art appraisal & advisory, personal security, and various others.
Nearly 200 professionals from 28 states packed a ballroom at The Westin Magnificent Mile for the association’s first annual conference known as the PRMA Summit. Among them were 108 licensed agents and brokers, as well as 39 carrier representatives, including senior members of high-net-worth specialist insurers ACE Private Risk Services, PURE, Fireman’s Fund and AIG Private Client Group.
The first day of the Summit was designed to help attendees understand how to create more value for their high-net-worth clients and their centers of influence. In the process, I found it refreshing that a number of challenges that agents face were addressed by speakers and discussed openly within the audience. For example:
Accessing wealthy clients with significant assets to protect is difficult, as is securing their loyalty. What can I do to access more and earn their loyalty? In her presentation, “A Macro View of the High-Net-Worth Universe,” Hannah Shaw Grove, co-founder and executive editor of Private Wealth magazine, provided data that showed 80.5% of clients with a net worth in excess of $10 million find their advisors (including insurance and risk management professionals) through other professional advisors.
She also noted that only one third of the super rich consider themselves truly loyal to most categories of advisors. The one interesting exception to that rule: Fine art advisors have a loyalty rate that is double the average of others. Fortunately, Grove offered insights on how to create more value that will result in greater access to advisors and their clients, as well as earn coveted levels of loyalty and referrals.