Podcast Guests from Keystone Insurance Group Share What the Best Agents Do Differently
We have a special double-feature for you today. Not one, but two guests from the revered Keystone Insurers Group have joined us for an information-packed episode.
What do the best do differently than the rest? This is the question we pursued in this lively conversation. And if anyone knows the answer it’s these two guests. Long-time industry insiders. Now, they both have a bird’s eye view on what’s really working in the field.
George Wynne and Josh Morgan are high-ranking executives with the Keystone Insurance Group, one of our industry’s most respected networks. They share freely how they see the agency force dividing into three different groups. (Pay attention here: only one of those groups will own the future.)
Don’t miss this important and lively conversation about the future of insurance!
What are other agents & brokers doing to thrive? What are the biggest trends affecting the retail insurance agent & broker? What are the most important strategies and tactics you need to grow faster? Find out here in the Connected Insurance Podcast, where Michael Jans discusses the biggest issues affecting the independent insurance agent and broker with the industries leading figures.
One More Thing! What do you think? How will you and your peers use this to grow your agency or brokerage? Share your thoughts in the comment section below, subscribe to get updates delivered to you and *please share this if you found it informative.
[Transcript] George Wynne, Senior Executive of Corporate Development, and Josh Morgan, Vice Preisdent of Keystone Insurers Group
Michael Jans: All right, so this time I’ve got two guests and I’m going to try to keep this organized so that it doesn’t turn into a circus affair. Josh Morgan and George Wynne, both from the same organization, Keystone. One of the highly respected, some people call them clusters, but we’re not going to do that, but you are a network of agencies so first of all, thanks to both of you for joining us.
George Wynne: Certainly.
Michael: Okay, [laughs] and secondly, we’ll take this one at a time. I’ll ask you to introduce yourself. George, you’ve been in the space for a while, tell us what you do there at Keystone and what your job is?
George: My actual title is the Executive Vice President of Corporate Development. We have — Keystone has approximately 15 divisions, okay? A lot of those divisions work with me to provide the evaluated services that we believe Keystone gives to our partner agents.
Michael: Before this call is over, we’re going to dig into what some of those value-added services are.
Michael: Hang with us to the end of the podcast, George. [laugs] All right, and Josh, you’ve also been in this space for a while, what’s your job?
Josh Morgan: I work under George. I’m within one of those divisions called the Organic Growth Division and my title is Vice President and I work with agencies on all topics around organic growth. I speak on the topic, I advise our partners, I do produce the recruitment, onboarding, compensation, plan development, training guide, the whole bed, but it largely focuses around producer development.
Michael: Got it. Well, organic growth is something that gets my juices going and I think it gets our audience’s juices going so we’re going to be digging in some of that stuff as well.
You were in the industry before you joined Keystone, You were with Marsh Berry?
Josh: That’s right, yes.
Michael: Yes, okay. George, you’ve had a long career in the industry, I think you said you were with Carriers.
George: Yes, I’ve started in the business before the earth gold and started with a company out of Pensylvania. Erie Insurance, I was a Senior Vice President with Erie Insurance and Erie some office and then I left there in 1995 and started my own insurance company. I didn’t raise the capital. I was given a capital by W. R. Berkley Corporation out of Greenwich, Connecticut and then we created our own property casualty company, and then it was in 2005, quite honestly, I thought about hanging up my spikes and doing something else, but then Keystone was my largest agency when I had my company.
When I had my compnay, I did $21 million worth of business with Keystone. I was very familiar with them. They approached me about coming to work for Keystone, which I did.
Michael: Okay, while we’re on the topic, give us the thumbnail for our listeners who don’t know Keystone or maybe those who have heard of Keystone and might have some misunderstanding of what it actually is. Real quick, what’s Keystone?
George: Okay, well, you said, we – actually, we are, we don’t like to admit it because it’s a very small portion of what we do, but we are a network of independent agencies. We have 108 employees that work 24 hours a day for our Keystone partners. We have 270 some partners who are at our 12 states that we do business at. The average size of our agency would be probably, I think there’s some misconceptions, but the average size is probably between $3 and $10 million in revenue.
Michael: Okay, you said 108 employees, did I hear that right?
George: Yes, that’s correct. 108 actual employees at the Keystone mothership.
Michael: Had somebody asked me prior to you saying that, I would have had no idea that the network was that large. Congratulations and I know Keystone’s reputation and I’ve had plenty of Keystone agencies as clients of mine. My observation is, not only is Keystone a pretty strong organization, but you’ve got some premier agencies in your network. I guess enough of my obsequiousness but I really do mean that. I’m going to dive into some of the insights, observations about the industry in general because both of you have so much experience working with agencies.
You and I, we’ve all talked before, the three of us, and one of the insights that one of you shared I thought was really interesting. It parallels a lot of other conversations that I’ve had with other guests, and that is that you divide the agency force into three categories. Am I right about that?
George: Yes, that’s correct. I always say — Go on.
Michael: Yes, well, George, yes, well, tell us about those three categories of agencies.
George: Well, I’m not sure where I got this from but I didn’t make it up myself, but I call them ROAD agents R-O-A-D. They are agents that I say are retired on active duty.
Michael: R-O-A-D, it’s an acronym, okay, I got it, all right. They’re not spending much time on the road, they’re actually retired on active duty, okay.
Michael: Before we go through all three of these, I’m going to dig into each one. Who are they? What are their characteristics? Are they doing okay? What’s their long term future?
George: I think their long-term future is very limited. They’re just kind of sitting there, sitting on the business that they have had over the years. They’re not growing their business and quite honestly, that that business is just kind of going away. That’s why I say they’re retired and sooner or later, quite honestly, it’s a very big disservice to our industry, because, as opposed to selling the agency or perpetuating the agency, some of these people just allow the business to go away because they believe they can make more money by not even service in the business than they could if they sold it.
Michael: Got it, okay, so they’re living off the tail.
Michael: Now, you don’t have to answer this question, but my presumption is you don’t have a lot of those agencies in the Keystone group?
Michael: Got it, all right, but they’re out there.
George: That the only way we might get one of those would be if one of our partners comes to us and says, “I want to buy this agency down the street from me in a couple years, how about if we consider bringing them into Keystone, so that when I have an opportunity to buy them they’re already part of Keystone?”
Michael: Got it, okay, got it, all right. Then we’ve got the second category of agencies. I think you called them the already rich.
George: Exactly, there are agencies that have been very, very – and we have some of those. I’d be the first one to admit that — [crosstalk]
Michael: Yes, well, fair enough. Well, I think what we might discover is there are a lot of them in the industry right now, okay?
George: Exactly, and they’ve done very well. They could be a second, third generation agency, they could be a scratch agency that was just successful by doing the things that good agents do. Now they’re just kind of sitting there, and the typical thing you would hear from them, I mean I think what we’re going to talk about is how rapidly this business that we’re in is changing. These are the people that have made money, they’ve got a lot of money. They don’t really care about losing their accounts and they’re always saying, “I wish it could be the way it used to be.’
Michael: I think you’ll agree with me on this. I don’t think wishing is going to make it happen.
George: No, I agree with you.
Michael: All right, so now it seems to me that those two groups, the road agent and the already rich, that they have some similarities in terms of, or maybe the lack of contemporary ambition, not embracing the change, right?
George: Exactly, yes.
Michael: Okay, and so the long-term future for both is that they’re probably not going to be a long-term force in the industry. The road agent, it’s going to wither away, they’re already rich. Presumably, that’s a professionally run organization, and somebody’s going to knock on their door and they’re going to sell.
George: Yes, we have to convince those people before it’s too late to start a perpetuation program.
Michael: Okay, got it, all right, so then we get —
George: Now, you have some of these agencies that are very successful and they made a lot of money, but they did not have a perpetuation plan. Now it takes more than one producer or more than one person to buy the agency. People have to plan down the road like, “If I’m going to be a very successful agent, it’s going to take a lot of money to buy me out so I’d better be figuring out how I’m going to do that right now.”
Michael: Okay, and most likely, they’re not going to see an internal perpetuation, it’s going to be external.
George: Exactly, yes.
Michael: All right, so then we have category number three, I’m not sure what you call these guys.
George: I call them pedal to the metal, they’re embracing everything that’s going on. They’re adapting to change. They’re in the digital world. They’re in the analog world. They’re doing just everything and they take, they are students of the business and they take every opportunity to be, I guess I would say to be intentional. They’re proactive, they’re always doing things or trying things which they believe are going to make their agency grow.
Michael: Okay, I’m going to ask you to make a generalization here. With category one, category number two, let me test the presumption. They’re mostly baby boomers?
George: Exactly, yes.
Michael: Okay, category three, let me make another presumption that there are a lot of millennials or Gen X-ers that are in that group, and there are baby boomers who perhaps have a second generation that are in that group, and that there are probably some baby boomers who just are perpetual entrepreneurs and are willing to embrace technology and other things like that that are in that group?
George: Yes, I would agree with that 100%, yes.
Michael: [laughs] All right, but the first two groups, boomers and the second group, do you see, frankly, I had another podcast interview this morning with a super successful agent. He’s not a NewArea, he’s not a Keystone agent, but he’s very successful, clearly aging, a baby boomer, but he embraces the technologies like he was 26 years old. Now he may not execute on those himself, but he’s got somebody on his team that can handle that.
George: I read an article, what’s interesting is that you bring that up, because I read an article the other day that said essentially the same thing, that some of the boomers spend more on the Internet and with social media than the millennials.
Michael: Now they’re actually, the latest research that I did, it demonstrates that boomers do spend more time online than millennials do. The distribution between devices might be slightly different, but as a whole, yes. There are those of us who are baby boomers who just dig technology. I have a feeling that whether it takes courage or just ambition or interest, those people that are in your category three have an active relationship with technology.
George: Yes, I definitely agree.
Michael: Okay, all right, so I don’t think we need to talk about category one and category two a lot, because I don’t think that they’re the future in the industry [chuckles], right?
Michael: Category three, let’s talk about them. First question is, what do you see as the differences in behaviors of the agency owner, if they fit into that pedal to the metal category?
George: Josh, you want to take a stab at that one?
Michael: All right, Josh.
George: You know a lot of the principles and what to look for when recruiting agent producers.
Josh: Yes, so from an owner’s perspective, number one, most agencies significantly underestimate the amount of producer hires that are necessary to hit their own growth goal. Putting aside perpetuation means if an agency needs to perpetuate out one owner, in most cases, they need to hire or have two perpetuation candidates. Given certain hiring success metrics, if 50% of your producers don’t make it that means that you’d actually have to hire four producers to have two perpetuation candidates. The agencies that are doing it right know that and understand that and are hiring at a much quicker velocity than those that are not. They’re building systems that allow them to do so.
For instance, one of the recommendations that I have for agencies that I work with is that they have an offer letter ready to go. When they have a producer candidate rather that they’ve identified has all the makings of someone great, that they have an offer letter that is ready to go, so that there is no time wasted between whether they’ve made the hiring decision and they put forth the offer. If it is truly a great candidate in today’s type hiring market, know market, they have other options. Those other options may be more swift with their hiring methods, and so the top performing agencies are figuring out the system to hire more effectively, hire smarter, and hire more swiftly than those who are not.
Also hiring more often too just because they need to grow organically and they need to perpetuate their agencies. It’s out of necessity that they are hiring, but by the same [unintelligible 00:22:22], all of these tactics are improving their agency value. In many cases, the same practices that you employ to perpetuate your agency, you’re increasing your agency value if you did chose to sell externally. The choice is the same for either outcome. Now it’s arguable which is better for the agency owner, how much more financial benefit there is in one direction or another, but the tactics are largely the same.
Michael: Okay, so I want to zero in on something that you had said and that is that agencies who are in this category three, pedal to the metal. They’re hiring more generally, you say they’re hiring more producers, right?
Josh: That’s accurate, right, yes.
Michael: That they generally have some systems in place to make that happen, so I got a couple of questions. Number one, when you’re talking about production and hiring producers, are you specifically talking about commercial lines over personal lines?
Josh: Yes, employee benefits, commercial lines, yes, that’s where I focus.
Michael: Okay, so that’s your area focus, okay. Then the other is kind of the, and it’s really an interesting concept here. One of my mentors, Dan Kennedy, used to say that the most dangerous number in business is one. The agency principal who has one producer, very dangerous because he’s vulnerable, but even, it would seem based on your methodology, the agency principal who hires one at a time, in other words, does not do it systematically, is in a little bit of a dangerous position. That in other words, the real business strategy is to build a system that attracts and recruits and then trains and manages producers, not just having your one or two good producers.
Josh: Absolutely, yes, you should have a job description that’s ready to go. You should already know what interview questions you’re going to ask. You should already have a job offer that’s already created, you should already have an onboarding system that’s put together before you actually make the hire. The fact that you have all these things done ahead of time just allows to put the process into play. If something’s not working in the process, you could make an adjustment in one of those areas. The best agencies have those things down pat and that’s what allows them to hire more often and also identify a talent when they see it. They don’t have to wait. They don’t have to maul about it, the hiring decision is actually easier when you know what you’re looking for.
Michael: Got it, all right, so that’s item number one is producer recruitment, is producer recruitment, producer management. What other behaviors do you see your most successful pedal to the metal agency owners, what behaviors do they execute? What makes it –?
George: They run their business as a business. It just happens to be they’re in the insurance business but they treat it, they run it as a business, and the most successful, without a question, plan, okay? They know where they want to be, not just this year but they know where they want their agency to be five years from now.
Michael: Okay, got it, so I’m breaking that down into two chunks there. Running the business as a business, so let me give you an example. Again, I’m calling on the interview that I had earlier this morning with a very successful agent. He clearly, he’s been around for a while so he did say for several years, he was selling insurance, but there came a point, he was still a very young man he’s, so now I think he says about 30,35 years ago. He has not sold the policy personally for 30 or 35 years. If we need proof that at least for him this was a successful strategy, he’s got the largest single owner agency in the state. When you say this principle of running the business as a business, what does that mean?
Let’s talk to the agent right now like, he’s showing up to work on Monday morning and he’s got a whole bunch of stuff and a lot of it’s insurance stuff, and maybe he’s got clients calling, whatever fills his day. What does that mean to run the business as a business?
George: To me, it means to be proactive, to be intentional about what you do, so when you get there on Monday morning, you’re not just reacting to people who happened not to be able to get a hold of you over the weekend, so you have other people to do that. You’re active, you’re going to spend a portion of your day looking for agencies to buy. You’re going to spend a portion of your time looking for new producers. You have a business plan as to how you’re going to run your business.
Michael: Okay, all right, so that gets to the second part of your earlier comment, that they have a plan. I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to hear you say that, because this is a conversation I’ve been trying to have with the industry for 25 years. I’m going to make a wild unscientific statement here, premise here. Most agencies, if you knocked on the door of the average independent insurance agency in the United States or Canada today, and they trusted you and you said, “Can we sit down so I can review your plan?”, they wouldn’t have one. Is that a safe statement to make?
George: Yes, I think it’s a very safe statement to make. We actually have a division, what we call agency management and it’s the best practices. This person is on a retainer with us. He teaches, he works with agents on business planning.
Michael: Okay, got it, so when you say, excuse me, an agency has a plan what are the elements of the plan?
George: Well, it would be the same thing that I said before. The best thing about planning is, I think the best thing about planning is that it makes you take a look at where you are today, and realize that most of the agencies I think operate that if they get X number of dollars of commission income during a month, and their expenses are less than the commission income, then they’ve had a very successful month but that’s not running a business. You’ve got to think about the investments, so you’re going to make an automation, the investments in social media. The most successful agents today have marketers. Okay?
Michael: Yes, all right, okay. I’m sorry to interrupt you but you just got me really excited. I interviewed Manny Barbosa from Safeco last week or a couple of weeks ago. In that conversation, he said that, according to their research, 56% of – and I presume they’re their agency, Safeco agencies, had a marketer, might not be full-time but had a marketer. In 2016, it was 52%. Now, this is a conversation I’ve been having with the industry for decades but it seems like somewhere around 2015, 2016, we hit a tipping point and more, at least, of the professionally run agencies had marketers than those that didn’t. Does that sound right?
George: Yes. I would agree with that 100%.
Michael: Well, it’s a radical shift because traditionally, any marketing that was done well back in the old days, it was the agency principal sat down where the Yellowpages rep and the Yellowpages rep said, “Let me design an ad for you.” Of course, that wasn’t their area of expertise, their job was to sell an ad. Then, if commercial lines producers wanted leads, they had to go get leads themselves and knock on doors like Fuller Brush salespeople. If they wanted personal lines leads, well, then the approach was to eagerly wait for the phone to ring.
Now, we’re actually seeing more agencies have somebody on the team whose responsibility it is to communicate with the marketplace and to draw that marketplace in in a trusting way into the agency. Thrilled to hear you say that. Now, when you look at that term marketer, at least in your observation, what are some of the responsibilities of that person?
George: Well, Josh, you chime in here, I know that Safeco does have a wonderful program and I think it’s — I think their marketing program is, I believe, is almost a year long where they’ll work with the marketing people. I guess what we see today is the most successful agencies are also niche agencies. They develop an expertise in a certain line of business or several lines of business and, as I say, they’re proactive. They’re going after the business where they have that expertise. If you’re a reactive agent, you do not have relationships, okay?
George: You’re there waiting for the phone to ring. The phone rings and then you do what we call the quote hope and hope game. You quote the business, you hope you got the best price and you hope that the person that wrote the business before you got there did it the right way because all you’re doing is copying what he or she did.
Michael: Yes, right on, okay. Right.
George: We’ve turned, we’re critical of the business and we talk about the direct writers. The guy goes out of the world and what we have allowed to happen is we have turned our business into a commodity business. If we’re not proactive about going and developing relationships, then the only thing we have to do is react when somebody calls. The only thing you can do is hope that you get the cheapest price because that’s where they’re going to go or in most cases, like 20% of the agents right, 80% of the business, it’s out there, okay?
George: The 80% that are still out there, all they’re doing is quoting against all the other people that are the 80% of the other quoters. It’s almost a death spiral unless you — It used to be that you could and I’m not saying, being critical in some places this is still possible but it used to be that you had an office on the Courthouse Square. You sponsored the little league team, you belonged to the Kiwanis and the Rotary and the business came to you.
Michael: That was marketing back in 1985, right?
George: Right, right.
Michael: Maybe 1995. Okay. All right.
George: That doesn’t work today.
Michael: It doesn’t work today. I want to ask, throw out a question and either of you could take this one because you talked about selling on price, selling a commodity. In other words, in the absence of any other distinguishing feature, price is the only thing that matters and insurance becomes a commodity. Now, you’ve got agents in Keystone or agents you’ve probably observed all over the place who don’t have to sell on price and who are able to, number one, stand out from the crowd in the marketplace, look different and actually deliver on that difference.
Then when they’re in a relationship with the client, when they get that relationship with the client, even though price is – they might be able to find a cheaper price somewhere else, that agency has created a relationship that engenders genuine loyalty. How do you see successful agents do that so that they don’t fall down that commodity trap?
George: Josh, you want to — We have a person that Josh works with and he teaches the techniques that the 20% of the agents that write 80% on the business, he teaches the techniques that they use and it’s what we call off cycle. In the old days, we’d go out and we got an X date, and then 120 days before that X date, we’d go out and copy all the policies and bring them back, and then we’d go back to them in a couple of weeks and we want them to divorce their current agent and come with us, okay?
George: We believe in off cycles selling. The best time to go in is just after the prospect renewed their policy, and then you have an entire year to start to build a relationship with them. I think sales statistics show that you’re probably not going to make a sale until you’ve had at least 8 to 11 customer experience with that prospect. It’s an ongoing process of building, developing relationships.
Michael: Do you see more and more of your agents or the agents that you’re observing delivering some of those touches and they can be meaningful touches and they can be delightful touches but do you see them delivering more of them in some online fashion, some digital fashion so they’re not having to schlep their way over to the shop 10 times to knock on this guy’s door?
George: Yes, I don’t think there’s any question about it. That’s got to be your marketing program. Then, that’s why I say niches because if you get into a certain niche or several different niches, you can gather information that’s going to be beneficial to the people within that niche as opposed to just shotgunning things out there.
Michael: Got it.
George: I think Safeco and some other companies do a very nice job on the personal line side of things but, “Oh, by the way, it’s hurricane season.” “Oh, by the way, you’ve got to check your pipes to make sure they don’t freeze.” That type of thing.
Michael: Got it.
George: There is information out there that’s available to most agencies but far too few of them take advantage of that, the materials out there.
Michael: All right. In the world we’re all living in right now. This is 2018, clearly, you guys have been around for a while. This is not 1995, it’s not 2005 and really I don’t even think it’s 2015. There’s been a lot of change in consumer behavior, a lot of change in available technologies, a lot of change in the maturing of the millennial generation and now we’ve got about $10 billion of venture capital and other fundings, funding startups and insurer techs, some of which are friendly to the agency force like Agency Revolution but a lot of which are not friendly. In this world right now, what do you think an agent needs to do? Strategically, what do they need to do to thrive, not just get by?
Josh: To me Yes, it goes back to the relationship, the personal relationship of the trusted adviser. That is what trumps anything that, these insuretechs that operate entirely through a chatbot, or a call center, or just an online interface. The personal relationship that agents have will always, in my belief, trump over those types of format. Now, however, buyer’s appetite for purchasing and their purchasing behaviors are going to change. It’s being spread over a larger spectrum. Some people do want to buy insurance through a chatbot and some people do just want to operate entirely over the phone.
Agencies have to make the decision, is that business that they want to retain or go after to generate new, or do they want to double down on personal relationships? It’s just a decision that they have to make, and I think it’s going to differ based upon the geography of where they are located and also the customer type that they seek. If they’re going after larger accounts, larger accounts it’s more of a white glove in-person type of sale.
You’re building relationship, it’s a long term sales cycle. If you’re buying renters’ insurance, maybe Lemonade is an option through one of their chatbots or what have you, for $7 a month or whatever it is. That maybe business the agency wants to see go away because they want to focus on larger account sizes. It’s going to be different depending upon the agency’s strategy and their goals, but at the end of the day the relationship is going to trump most of what any of these insuretechs can offer. I don’t think the agency would give a lot of the focus on that.
Michael: All right. Let’s talk a little bit about the contribution that you guys at Keystone are making to the industry. A little background noise, if somebody maybe wants to mute their phone. Keystone, so correct me if I have any of these wrong. You’ve got, I think you said about 270 agencies, you’re in 11 states, you’re about to go into another one I think Wisconsin is that right?
George: That’s right.
Michael: Yes. You’ve got over 500 locations, you’re doing over $3 billion of sales. Tell me what is it about Keystone? It’s clearly one of the success stories in the industry. What is it about Keystone that you think has made it such a force?
George: I think it’s because we as the company employees, we do not sit around and dream up things to do. In our newer states we typically have, what we call four partner meetings a year. Over more established states, sometimes it’s three meetings a year. We’d listen to what our people say, what they want. Probably an excellent example, is just before the Affordable Care Act our agents told us they wanted us to get into the benefits business.
We went out and we found one of our partners that 50% of their revenue was benefits and 50% was P&C, and we bought the benefits side of thing. Of course, then, the Affordable Care Act kind of changed, the economy went down the tombs and we lost a lot of revenue. It turned out to be a very wonderful thing, because that gave us an opportunity to share our expertise as far as the Affordable Care Act, then compliance and all those things. It’s listening to what our partners want us to do, and then, I believe we’re very good at executing once we determine what they need, well.
Michael: Okay. Not too long ago, I had an interview with Neil Stanley. Who you obviously, we both know very well. He may be the industry’s expert on networks, or clusters, or whatever we want to call these organizations. First of all, he stunned me with a number and I can’t remember what it is, but it was really big. I think it was over 50%. That over 50% of independent agencies affiliate with some kind of a network.
I thought, “Wow, that’s really changed since the early days when clusters started to appear on the horizon.” And made it very clear that clusters are different than each other, they’re not all the same. What do you think it is about Keystone that is a differentiator? In other words, if there’s an agency listening and thinking, “It’s really time I take a look at affiliating with a network organization.” What do you think distinguishes Keystone? I’m not just saying we’re better, but what makes you different? What services do you provide that are different?
George: Josh, you pipe in here too. There are a lot of different aggregators, clusters or whatever we want to call them, out there. I think they’re all good, they all serve a purpose. We’re just a little bit different, because we’re not just a market provider. There’s nothing wrong with market providers because some people need that, because it’s more difficult to form relationships or to have a significant amount of volume, to have any influence on an insurance company.
There are other things that are important. We have our benefits division. The reason we do that is we have some agents that are very sophisticated in benefits, and then we have some that have always shied away from it because they didn’t want to ruin their good property causality clients. For those that are sophisticated, we can provide back room sources for them.
For those who are not as sophisticated, we have our sales teams in every state in which we do business, and we’ll actually go out and write the business for them. Of course, they’re either split in revenue, but we do the same thing on bonds, we do the same thing on– We have a whole division that it focuses on bonding, we have financial services, we have carrier relations people, we just do a lot of different things.
Once again, I don’t say that I know what every group out there does, but I think we do many things that an agency regardless of their size, could not do on their own. By putting 270 agents together, now we have resources that we can develop and share those resources with our partner, because our prime objective is to help our partners grow the value of their agency, by being in Keystone than they could do on their own. Every decision we make, it is to help our agents increase the value of their business.
Michael: Got it, okay. Josh, is there anything you want to add to that?
Josh: If you’re out to perpetuate your business and you want and need all of the same resources, as the much larger broker, the publicly traded, the private equity back, and you’re seeking a way to do that, join Keystone. Keystone partners have nearly all of the same tools as a much larger agency, but yet, they’re able to operate out of their local footprint, and operate without the large corporate culture that many have of the larger brokers might have.
It presents significant competitive advantage for our Keystone partners because when it comes to recruiting, when it comes to the ability to pay their people effectively, they have numerous advantages that others who do not operate in a similar type of network have. I think that’s a significant point.
Michael: If any of our listeners would like to get more information, or reach out to you, or if they have a question, either about something that you shared on this conversation or about Keystone, first of all who should they reach out to and how should they do that?
George: I’m not even sure I have her number. We have a lady who’s vice president of– What do we call her Josh? Vice president of state expansion. Her name is Elizabeth Schenk. Actually, her office or her cell phone number is 7-1-7-5-8-0-3-1-6-2. For an agency that would be interested, they could reach out to her. We have state Vice Presidents in every state in which we do business, and she would be able to either handle them directly or put them into contact with the state Vice presidents of whatever state they may be in, if we’re doing business there.
Michael: All right. Do you know the address or the URL for your website, for Keystone’s website?
Josh: It’s keystoneinsgrp.com.
Michael: Got it, all right. Josh Morgan and George Wynne, has been a delightful conversation. I want to thank you both for sharing your time and your insights with us, and a very good possibility I’ll see you at a Keystone meeting, I think it’s in September, in St. Louis, so I look forward to that.
George: We’d love to see you there.
Michael: Yes, indeed, again. On behalf of our listeners, thanks, for joining us.