I work for a non-advised sales company. This means that I cannot advise a customer what is suitable for their needs. I actually think that this is the best sales method. Afterall, as a customer, you should know what is best for yourself and your home, and not rely on someone else to tell you.
Gone are the days when sales people could frighten, cajole or badger customers into making a purchase. Now the onus is well and truly on the customer. If they don’t know what they want then we cannot help them.
However, we still have potential customers ringing through, who expect us to tell them what is suitable for them. Yes, we have x-ray eyes and can see straight into their homes. We know exactly what insurance they already have and what they don’t have. Afterall, we are omnipotent. We know everything about the person calling us.
Think I’m being sarcastic? Well, I would hope so. But one such person called me during this past week. To top it off, this potential customer had been looking on the web at our insurance policies and requested a certain cover for his own home and his several rental properties.
Now we have a section on the web for landlords. This deals specifically with landlords policies. He quite clearly had not even looked at this section.
I informed the customer about these products to which he informed me that he had the landlords section open. I asked him what he wanted covered for his rental properties and he told me about a non-landlord cover.
I then explained that this particular cover was for where he lived himself and that it could only be set up online. He didn’t like this and had a go at me. I didn’t say anything – I had told him it was only available online so there was nothing more to say about it.
I then began to run through the landlords policies for him. Yet again he wasn’t happy. He wanted me to tell him which cover was the best for him. I explained that we are non-advised and that only he could decide what cover was best for his needs. All I could do was to explain the policies that we offer. This enraged him even further.
‘Your attitude stinks!’ He told me.
He proceeded to advise me that our competitor had given him lots of advice. I bet they had. They are also regulated by the FCA so work on a very similar basis to ourselves.
He then demanded to speak to a manager. I put him through. He complained about me not advising him which policy he should have. Of course, the manager told him exactly what I had told him. He wasn’t happy and hung up.
As sales staff we would very much like to bully people into taking a policy. We have targets. Badgering people and frightening them gets them to buy policies. However, we are not allowed to do this. This is for the customers benefit as well as ours.
Customers can be assured that when they ring insurance companies they are not going to be pestered into taking out cover. They can make a simple call to ask for a price and they now know that that is what they will receive and they will not be nagged into buying.
This is a much better way of doing things for everyone. Customers can feel more relaxed about making that phone call. So if my non-advised sales attitude stinks, then so be it.